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Huskers Shine in Preseason All-Big Ten Honors

Wednesday, October 4, was a remarkable day for Husker Women’s Basketball, as stars Jaz Shelley and Alexis Markowski grabbed Preseason All-Big Ten accolades. Both coaches and media unanimously recognized the pair’s prowess.

This double distinction places Nebraska alongside Ohio State, the only other conference school to have two players celebrated in the Preseason All-Big Ten lineup.

Spotlight on Jaz Shelley

The 5-9 guard hailing from Moe, Australia, Jaz Shelley, is no stranger to accolades. After her stellar performance in the 2022-23 season, she had secured a spot in the first-team All-Big Ten. Notably, she was also under the limelight as a candidate for both the Naismith Trophy and Ann Meyers Drysdale Award the previous year. Showcasing her all-round skills, she averaged impressive stats with 14.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, and led her team with an average of 6.2 assists per game. Additionally, with her 79 three-pointers, she claimed her rank among the top players in the Big Ten.

Shelley’s past performances mirror her recent accolades. She was crowned Nebraska’s MVP in 2023 and had previously made her mark as a second-team All-Big Ten pick in her debut Husker season (2021-22). She held a unique distinction in the 2021-22 season as the sole Big Ten player featuring in the top 20 across all five primary statistical categories.

Having played 65 games over two seasons with the Huskers, Shelley’s tallied an enviable 896 points, 361 rebounds, 366 assists, 113 steals, and 52 blocks. Outside her college commitments, Shelley has donned the green and gold for the Australian National Team since 2020 and was part of their squad for the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup.

The off-court, Shelley excels academically. Having graduated in advertising and public relations in May 2023, she was chosen for the College Sports Communicators Academic All-District in 2023. Shelley is also an attendee at the NBA Student-Athlete Summit, marking her second consecutive summer there.

Introducing Alexis Markowski

Returning for her second straight Preseason All-Big Ten honor, Markowski’s consistent performances have not gone unnoticed. In the 2022-23 season, this 6-3 center boasted an average of 11.9 points and 9.8 rebounds per game, placing her at the forefront of Big Ten’s players. Notably, she was the singular conference player to score an average double-double during the previous season’s regular Big Ten games.

A contender for the Naismith Trophy in the 2022-23 season, Markowski’s star began rising early with her being named the 2022 Big Ten Freshman of the Year. Her contributions were pivotal in Husker victories against AP Top 10 opponents and their advance to the 2022 NCAA Tournament.

This Lincoln Pius X High School graduate’s Husker journey reflects 803 points and 587 rebounds across 66 games. Markowski’s skills also earned her an invite to the USA AmeriCup Team Trials in May 2023. Besides, she was an Academic All-Big Ten pick in her sophomore year.

Huskers at Big Ten Women’s Basketball Media Day

Markowski and Shelley, alongside Maddie Krull and Head Coach Amy Williams, will represent Nebraska at the Big Ten Women’s Basketball Media Day. Fans can catch them live at the Target Center in Minneapolis on Monday, Oct. 9, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

2023-24 Preseason All-Big Ten Selections:

Coaches Picks:

  • Husker Stars: Alexis Markowski, Jaz Shelley
  • Also featured: Players from Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio State, and Penn State.

Media’s Choice:

  • Husker Honorees: Alexis Markowski, Jaz Shelley
  • Other notable picks: Players from Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio State, and Penn State.

Predicted Big Ten Top Teams:

Coach Projections:

  1. Iowa
  2. Ohio State
  3. Indiana
  4. Maryland
  5. Illinois

Media’s Forecast:

  1. Iowa
  2. Indiana
  3. Ohio State
  4. Maryland
  5. Michigan

With the season around the corner and the Huskers making waves in preseason honors, the stage is set for an exciting and competitive year of women’s basketball in the Big Ten.

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