Iowa's Megan Gustafson named finalist for Lisa Leslie Award

Dargan Southard
Hawk Central

Megan Gustafson’s dominance has been well-established this season, so much so that she’s in line for national recognition.

Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder congratulates Megan Gustafson for her 1,000 career points before the Hawkeyes' game against Northern Illinois at Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017.

The Iowa junior was named a top-10 finalist for the Lisa Leslie Award, which recognizes the best women’s basketball center in the country. Gustafson is averaging 24.5 points, 12.5 rebounds and 2.3 blocks through 23 games this season and has been the driving force behind the Hawkeyes’ year-long success.

In Thursday’s win over Michigan State, Gustafson tied the career program record (men and women) for double-doubles. She has 48 such performances to date, including 21 this season, and will likely own that record by herself in the not-so-distant future.

Gustafson currently ranks in the top seven nationally in eight statistical categories. She leads the country in field goals made (207), ranks second in double-doubles (21) and field-goal percentage (66.1), third in total points (527), fourth in points per game (24.0), sixth in defensive rebounds per game (eight), and seventh in rebounds (271) and rebounds per game (12.3).   

The winner of the 2018 Lisa Leslie Center Award will be announced during ESPN2's telecast of the national semifinal games in the 2018 NCAA Women's Final Four in Columbus, Ohio, on March 30.

The 10 Finalists

Kalani Brown, Baylor

Azura Stevens, Connecticut

Megan Gustafson, Iowa

Hallie Thome, Michigan

Teaira McCowan, Mississippi St.

Kaylee Jensen, Oklahoma St.

Marie Gulich, Oregon St.

A'ja Wilson, South Carolina

Mercedes Russell , Tennessee

Monique Billings, UCLA

Dargan Southard covers preps, recruiting, Iowa and UNI athletics for the Iowa City Press-Citizen, The Des Moines Register and Email him at or follow him on Twitter at @Dargan_Southard.