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USC star JuJu Watkins tosses out first pitch at Dodgers game

Wade-Peeryby:Wade Peery06/22/24

JuJu Watkins is one of the biggest stars in women’s college basketball. She dominated at a rare level this year for a freshman, putting up historic numbers in the process. Simply put, she made it look easy in leading the Trojans to the Elite Eight in this year’s NCAA Tournament. And on Saturday night, the Trojans superstar was welcomed by the Los Angeles Dodgers to throw out the first pitch in their game vs. the Los Angeles Angels.

JuJu Watkins reflected on her historic season as a freshman

This season, Watkins set the NCAA Division I single-season freshman scoring record with 920 points scored this past season. That’s a record that Watkins reflected on setting following USC’s Elite Eight loss to UConn.

“It’s definitely an honor. I mean, of course, like I said, not really the terms I would like to end on, on my season,” Watkins said. “I mean, I’m just blessed. This program has offered me a lot. I’m so grateful for it. It’s just been a great season.”

“The record is great. Just the moments that I’ve got to spend with this team have meant everything to me. I’m just excited for next year, yeah.”

Prior to JuJu Watkins, Tina Hutchinson of San Diego State held the freshman scoring record with 898 points that she scored in the 1983-84 season.

Watkins’ best offensive game came in one of the most important that USC played all season, against Stanford on the road. That game came back in early February when she scored 51 points. It was, in many ways, that game, that established JuJu Watkins as a name to watch nationally.

She also stacked up numerous other accolades and honors, including setting the USC single-season scoring record. Watkins broke a record that stood for nearly 40 years, passing one of the greatest players in the history of her sport in the process.

Watkins racked up an extensive amount of hardware her freshman year including Pac-12 All Defensive Team honors and Pac-12 Freshman of the Year honors. She was named first team All-American by multiple different media outlets.

As a high school prospect, Watkins was one of the most decorated players in the country, earning Gatorade National Player of the Year honors and Naismith Prep Player of the Year honors in 2023. She played her final two seasons with Sierra Canyon School (Los Angeles, California).

On3’s Dan Morrison also contributed to this article.