Maurice D. Williams 03/04/09

HAMPTON, Va. – Hampton University freshman Jericka Jenkins has been named a finalist for the ninth annual V Foundation Comeback Award, as announced on Tuesday.

Jenkins joins 11 other finalists for the award, along with Suzanne Albert, Felician College; Jermaine Bishop, Northern Arizona University; Kelvin Davis, San Diego State University; Joe Ford, University of the Pacific; Eleia Roddy, University of Kentucky; Brooke Johnson, Western Carolina University; Cait McMahan, University of Tennessee; Ole Miss Men's Basketball Team, University of Mississippi; Dana Pernell Smith II, Longwood University; Tiffara Steward, Farmingdale State College; Azania Stewart, University of Florida.

Jenkins is second on the team in scoring this season, pouring in 9.2 points a contest. She scored a career-high 27 points behind seven 3-pointers against Coppin State on Feb. 21, and has scored in double figures in 11 games this season.

Jenkins successfully fought her battle with Hodgkins lymphoma while in high school and has been cancer-free since November 2007.

The annual award, presented in the memory of late basketball coach Jim Valvano, is open to men and women collegiate basketball student-athletes in all divisions. It is awarded to an individual or a team who has accomplished a personal triumph in the face of true adversity, be it in health, life or moral dilemma. Student-athletes are nominated by their athletics department representative.

Valvano won the 1983 NCAA basketball championship with N.C. State. He would later stage his own battle with cancer, a battle he would eventually lose, but not before announcing at the inaugural ESPY awards in 1993 the founding of the V Foundation and giving a speech in which his trademark phrase – “Don’t give up! Don’t ever give up!” – became an inspiration for millions.

The award is presented in conjunction with ESPN and the recipient will be announced during the network’s coverage of the Final Four and the NIT.