LOS ANGELES – Gatorade will announce its national male and female Athletes of the Year at an annual luncheon Wednesday.
In conjunction with the ESPY Awards, the male winner will be announced by Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love and WNBA Hall of Famer Lisa Leslie and soccer legend Brandi Chastain will announce the female winner.
All 12 national-sport winners will be present for the luncheon, including MaxPreps female Athlete of the Year Chiney Ogwumike, a basketball and volleyball star at Cy-Fair (Cypress, Texas). She's earned a full ride to Stanford.
Other female nominees are Megan Goethals (Rochester HS, Rochester Hills, Mich., cross country), Mollie Pathman (Durham Academy, N.C., soccer), Kasey Fagan (Dunnellon, Fla., softball), Ashton Purvis (St. Elizabeth, Oakland, Calif., track and field) and Ashley Whittman (Shakopee, Minn., volleyball).
The male nominees are two-time basketball national winner Brandon Knight (Pine Crest, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), Kaleb Cowart (Cook, Adel, Ga., baseball), Lukas Verzbicas (Sandburg, Orland Park, Ill., cross country), Malcolm Jones (Oaks Christian, Westlake Village, Calif., football), Soony Saad (Dearborn, Mich., soccer) and Sam Crouser (Gresham, Ore., track and field).
A national electoral panel of more than 350 voters helped select the winners.
Past winners of the award include LeBron James, Allyson Felix, Dwight Howard, Candace Parker, Maya Moore and Love.
This is the 25th anniversary of Gatorade’s year-end awards and eighth annual presentation.
MaxPreps.com will be on hand Wednesday for the announcement and follow up with the results, a feature and video highlights.
Skylar Diggins (Washington basketball) and Garrett Gilbert (Lake Travis football) and were selected the winners last year.
See more about the history of the Gatorade Player of the Year program.