For the second time in Temple University Women’s Basketball history, the Owls will retire the jersey number of an all-time great in their game Thursday night against the University of South Carolina. Candice Dupree, a Tampa, Florida native who had one of the most accomplished careers in Temple History from 2002-2006 will have her number retired as Temple faces the defending national champions.
“An All-American on and off the court, Candice led the Owls to greatness during her career here, and has taken her success to even higher levels with her six-time all-WNBA career,” said Temple University Director of Athletics Dr. Patrick Kraft.
At halftime of the game, Dupree’s jersey will raise up to the rafters alongside former great Marilyn Stephens’ No. 33 jersey in McGonigle Hall along with the Liacouras Center. She will also be officially inducted into the Temple Athletics Hall of Fame in a pregame reception, since she was unable to attend the 2016 induction ceremony.
“Having my jersey retired at Temple means a lot to me. The four years I spent at the University not only provided me with an education, but the opportunity to build and grow my craft,” said Dupree.
Dupree is still building her craft. She plays professionally for the Indiana Fever in her 11th season in the WNBA and that is in big part because of her college head coach, Dawn Staley. Staley led the Owls to a national stage as head coach starting in 2000 before the three time Olympic gold medalist took over as head coach of the University of South Carolina in 2008. This past season, she led the Gamecocks to their first ever national championship.
“I have no doubt that it was the investment Temple and Dawn Staley made in me that prepared me mentally and physically for a successful and lengthy career in the WNBA, with USA Basketball, and overseas. Temple University will always be a place that I cherish and I am honored to have my jersey hanging in the rafters,” said Dupree. Candice Dupree was part of Staley’s first-ever WNBA First Round Draft Picks, when she was drafted by the Chicago Sky in 2006.
Professionally, Dupree has been named to the All-Star team six times. Often called the ‘female Tim Duncan’, Dupree was also a member of the US National team that won a gold medal in the 2010 World Championships.
“Dupree is one of the greatest student-athletes in the history of Temple Athletics and deserves to have her number immortalized,” said Kraft. While at Temple, Candice Dupree received several accolades. Most notably, she was a two-time conference Defensive Player of the Year, two-time conference and Big 5 player of the year, and as a senior in 2005-06 was named the Most Outstanding Player at the conference championship. The third-team All-American, went on to be the sixth overall pick in the 2006 WNBA draft.