South Carolina star Aliyah Boston declares for the 2023 WNBA draft
South Carolina Gamecocks star Aliyah Boston is declaring for the WNBA draft. She is projected as the top overall prospect in the upcoming draft class.
"In this moment, I am truly breathless as I make the next best decision of my life," Boston said in a statement. "I have decided to further pursue my dream by declaring for the 2023 WNBA Draft."
Boston will head to the WNBA after a dominant collegiate career. She earned several top honors throughout her illustrious tenure at South Carolina. Boston became a three-time AP First-Team All-American and won the 2022 John R. Wooden Award.
Last season, Boston led the South Carolina to a NCAA national championship. She also set school records with 30 double-doubles and became the fifth player to eclipse 1,000 career rebounds.
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Additionally, Boston made history by becoming the first collegiate athlete to win both the Naismith Trophy and the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year.
"It’s no secret that I love the sport of basketball," Boston said. "The invaluable experience I have gained cannot be measured. The sheer magnitude of the guidance I have received from the coaching staff will continue to follow me well into the next chapter of my career."
Boston finished her senior season with 12.5 points, 9.4 rebounds and 2.6 blocks. However, her impact was just as important off the court. She leaves after establishing a new culture at South Carolina and growing into a well-round athlete.
"She has learned it's really not about the accolades," South Carolina head coach Dawn Staley said, via ESPN. It's more about her growth."
AWARDS: Caitlin Clark, Aliyah Boston headline top NCAA award winners
God makes no mistakes❤️ this program has been so good to my family and I. Wouldn’t trade these past 4 years for anything. With love gamecock nation❤️ #forevertothee pic.twitter.com/tM2iY0lMet
— Aliyah A. Boston (@aa_boston) April 1, 2023
The Indiana Fever hold the No. 1 selection in the 2023 WNBA draft. Gamecocks head coach Dawn Staley believes Boston would fit well with the organization. Staley mentioned that Boston has the skills and leadership to make a difference as a rookie.
"She is exactly what the Fever needs," Staley said. "Whatever challenges that the Fever have had in the past, there are things with Aliyah they will never have to worry about. Like coming in with an incredible example of what a professional should look like, even as a rookie. She will elevate even their most veteran player."
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Aliyah Boston, South Carolina star, declares for 2023 WNBA draft