Simmons headed to WNBA Draft

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT/Submitted) -- Tennessee senior Meighan Simmons, the school's No. 5 all-time scorer in women's basketball, is one of 12 prospects invited to attend Monday night's 2014 WNBA Draft presented by State Farm, the league announced on Thursday.

Simmons, a 5-foot-9 guard from Cibolo, Texas, will be on hand at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Conn., for the event, which begins at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN2 with the first round and continues with the second and third rounds on ESPNU, beginning at 9 p.m. ET.

The 2014 Associated Press SEC Player of the Year, Simmons looks to continue Tennessee's rich history in the WNBA Draft. The school has sent 37 players into the league, including 15 first-round selections and three No. 1 picks.

Simmons was taken aback when told of her invitation to the draft.

"My eyes got really big, and I was very, very happy," Simmons said. "I was shocked, because I didn't know that was going to happen. There were so many different emotions, and I just really enjoyed the moment and felt extremely blessed by the opportunity.

"It will be exciting to be in that room for the draft and take in what an event such as that is like and experience the aura of everyone being drafted."

Last season, nine former Lady Vols were active in the league. That list included Tamika Catchings (Indiana), Alexis Hornbuckle (Phoenix), Glory Johnson (Tulsa), Kara Lawson (Connecticut), Candace Parker (Los Angeles), Ashley Robinson (Seattle), Michelle Snow (Washington), Shekinna Stricklen (Seattle) and Kamiko Williams (New York).

Williams is UT's most recent draft pick, going in the second round in 2013 with the 15th overall pick by the New York Liberty. The last occasion a Lady Vol was drafted in the first round came in 2012, when Stricklen (No. 2, Seattle), Johnson (No. 4, Tulsa) and Kelley Cain (No. 7, New York) all were taken in the opening round.

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