USC grad student Temi Fagbenle has been selected 35th overall in the 2016 WNBA Draft, picked by the Minnesota Lynx on the first day of the draft (April 14).
After leading the Women of Troy in almost every statistical category this season, Fagbenle earned herself a a place as one of 52 WBCA All-Region honorees, following in the footsteps of USC's last All-Region honoree — and last WNBA draftee — Cassie Harberts, who was on the list in 2014.
In her final season of eligibility as a USC graduate student, Fagbenle stood tall as a Trojan. A team captain and full-time starter, The 6-4 post player earned a spot on the prestigious All-Pac-12 Team and earned Pac-12 All-Defensive Honorable Mention selection — reflection of the diverse talents Fagbenle brings to the court.
Fagbenle recorded 10 double-doubles as a Trojan while leading the team in scoring (13.6 ppg), rebounding (8.7 rpg), blocks (1.2 bpg), steals (1.8 spg), free throws made (93) and minutes played (30.3 mpg). She was named the Pac-12 Player of the Week after helping lead USC to an upset win over ranked crosstown rival UCLA. Her presence helped USC open the year with 12 straight wins, marking the best season start for the Women of Troy since 1982-83. Fagbenle scored in double figures in 24 games, with 12 double-digit rebounding days.
Fagbenle averaged 1.8 steals per game and hauled in 177 defensive rebounds while serving up 39 blocks on the defensive end. Her numbers in conference play were even stronger. She averaged 14.3 points and 9.1 rebounds while shooting 54 percent from the floor during Pac-12 play. In the nation, Fagbenle ranked No. 55 in the nation with her 51.4% scoring in 2015-16. Against top-25 ranked opponents, Fagbenle averaged 12.3 points, 7.9 rebounds, 1.5 steals and 1.0 blocks per game at USC.
A 2012 Olympian for Great Britain, Fagbenle played three seasons at Harvard before transferring to USC to pursue a masters degree in strategical public relations. Fagbenle will complete her graduate degree at USC before joining the Lynx in 2017.
Fagbenle joins a star-studded list of Trojans in the WNBA. The last player to be drafted was Cassie Harberts in 2014. Before that, Jacki Gemelos and Briana Gilbreath both were picked up in the 2012 draft and went on to roster spots in the WNBA. Prior to them, Camille LeNoir was selected in the 2009 second round, preceded by 2007 second-rounder Shay Murphy as USC's other recent WNBA picks. In addition to 1997 Inaugural Elite Selections Cynthia Cooper and Lisa Leslie, USC now has had 11 players drafted in the WNBA. The first draft in 1997 also saw two Women of Troy taken -- Pam McGee and Tina Thompson.
For more information, visit the MINNESOTA LYNX web site.
First Round Ebony Hoffman (2004, Indiana Fever) Pam McGee (1997, Sacramento Monarchs) Tina Thompson (1997, Houston Comets)
Second Round Adrain Williams (2000, Phoenix Mercury) Shay Murphy (2007, Minnesota Lynx) Camille LeNoir (2009, Washington Mystics) Cassie Harberts (2014, Atlanta Dream)
Third Round Jacki Gemelos (2012, Minnesota Lynx) Briana Gilbreath (2012, Washington Mystics) Temi Fagbenle (2016, Minnesota Lynx)
Fourth Round Monica Lamb (1998, Houston Comets) Nicky McCrimmon (2000, Los Angeles Sparks)