Six Oklahoma softball players on 2024 National Player of Year watch list


One week ahead of the opening of the 2024 college softball season, six players on the No. 1-ranked Oklahoma softball team have been named to the USA Softball National Player of the Year watch list.

Four Sooner position players and two pitchers are among the 50 college players named to the Player of the Year watch list. Oklahoma leads all teams with six players on the list for the 2024 season. The six are outfielder Jayda Coleman, second baseman Tiare Jennings, catcher Kinzie Hansen, utility Alyssa Brito and starting pitchers Nicole May and Oklahoma State transfer Kelly Maxwell. All are seniors.

Former Oklahoma pitcher Jordy Bahl also is on the 2024 Player of the Year watch list. Bahl, who was a two-time All-American in her freshman and sophomore seasons at OU, transferred to Nebraska after the 2023 season.

Oklahoma is seeking a record-setting fourth consecutive national championship in 2024. The Sooners are one of just two teams to win the national title in back-to-back-to-back season. UCLA is the other, accomplishing the three-peat in 1988-'90.

The SEC, where Oklahoma will be playing beginning in 2025, place the most players on the USA Softball POY list with 21. The Big 12 was third among the major conferences with 10, including the six from Oklahoma.

Pitcher Keilani Ricketts (2012-13) and NCAA career home run leader Jocelyn Alo (2021-22) are previous winners of the USA Softball National Player of the Year Award.

Oklahoma opens the 2024 softball season Feb. 8-10 south of the border in the Puerto Vallarta College Classic. Utah Valley, Duke, Washington and Long Beach State are also participating in the tournament. Duke and Washington are both ranked in the preseason top 10.

It was also announced this week that five Oklahoma softball games will be televised nationally this season:

April 5, @Texas Longhorns, 5:30 p.m. CT (ESPNU)

April 6, @Texas Longhorns, 7 p.m. (ESPN)

May 3, Oklahoma State Cowgirls, 6:30 p.m. (FS1)

May 4, Oklahoma State Cowgirls, 4 p.m. (ESPNU)

May 5, Oklahoma State Cowgirls, 4 p.m. (ESPNU)