- Feb 22, 2016
I would like to add that if Taurasi had been the kind of student Pat expected her players to try to be and had actually not been scared off the idea of Tennessee because she wasn't and knew it, she would have been beloved in Knoxville. Yes, she obviously wouldn't have been given the leeway from Pat that she got from GA, but if she could have adapted she would have been beloved.
Over the years I grew to appreciate the fact that she knew her (academic) limitations and didn't waste Pat's time and Lady Vol resources on recruiting her when she knew for SURE she didn't want any of those pressures to put great effort into classes. She went to the best place for her because he was both an excellent coach and he wasn't concerned about whether she attended class regularly or not -- and she excelled in that environment. She chose well.
Interestingly, Candace Parker's story is basically the polar opposite of Taurasi's.
Did Taurasi graduate from UConn? I assume she did. The academic thing seems overplayed. Maybe she was put off by having to go to study hall--but it was not like PS's players were majoring in molecular biology or engineering. I assume most were in the fairly easy majors that many, if not most of the players are still in. She pretty much single-handedly beat us with scoring and assists in an NCAA title game when we had the more experienced team--I think her senior year. What can we say--one of the all-time greats.
Taurasi attended Don Antonio Lugo High School, where she graduated in 2000. Next, she enrolled at the University of Connecticut where she attended from 2000-2004 and then took a break from school to enter the Women's National Basketball League draft, play in the Olympics, and then return to finish her first season in the WNBA. In 2005, Taurasi went back to college and earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Connecticut. As a first-generation college student, the first in her family to graduate from college, Taurasi described pride in earning her degree which she said, "meant just as much as any championship ring, banner or gold medal".
They did seem to enjoy it as an experience and I'm really glad they quick organized that meet n greet after KJH said the other day they weren't going to.Yeah, you can tell by all the photos and all the post-game interviews that the experience was a total useless waste of time and no one involved will cherish the memory of it because we got trounced.
I watched this game for who won little battles (cause the outcome of the war was a fait accompli before the tip).
First, I was pleasantly (actually deliriously) SHOCKED by how comfortable Edie looked on the court. I completely underestimated her. She is gonna get some important minutes this season.
And Kaiya has made some real steps forward. Great to see as well.
Jillian is not going to face that many 6-9 opponents this season and her post game looks good.
Rickea hitting threes!!!
Breakaway spot up 3 for Tess (that looked just like the clip from a practice session where many went So? it is just practice. Well, practice translates to games)
Puckett looking like she is ready to shred this year--goodbye sophomore slump.
I think this was a good game for Jewel to get under her belt, who looked just a little rusty but got more comfortable as the game unfolded.
For the most part, Wells and Powell did a decent job except for the 2nd quarter where they feel into a turnover fest.
I would have liked the LVs to be a little better under pressure. I think they got a bit complacent in the 1st quarter where Taurasi's rotation group were more than happy to exchange baskets and play exhibition game caliber defense. The 2nd team came in and ramped it up fast.
However,, TOs were a problem last season so that is one point of concern.
My "like" vote was not enough to convey how right on you are here. Thanks, Ivocd.Yeah, you can tell by all the photos and all the post-game interviews that the experience was a total useless waste of time and no one involved will cherish the memory of it because we got trounced.
I had so much fun at the game, and it was a joy to watch our players interacting with some of their basketball idols. The fact that Griner and Taurasi got tremendous ovations was touching, and it made me so proud of our fanship.
I don't care what the final score was, our Lady Vols competed well for very nearly the entire game. There were a couple of minutes here and there they lost focus, but for the most part they fought hard.
Team USA was, of course, just a much better, stronger and, most obviously, quicker team, and yet our players did better (I think) against that than they really should have given the width of that particular gap in physical abilities.
Anyone who can't see how valuable that experience was really needs to go watch all the interviews after the game. This, what, 40-point loss? It is going to help our team. To have rubbed elbows with those world-class players, and even just to have heard those players giving them compliments on their competitiveness, is going to be a confidence booster.
I'm THRILLED we played that game yesterday, and IMO, that loss was a huge win for the program.
Well it was more like a scrimmage. Some players that got 14 to 20 minutes in this contest against the United States team are players that may play two to five minutes, sometimes. The minutes at the guard spots are eaten up by Jasmine Powell Destinee Wells Jewel Spears & Tess Darby. Kaiya Winn will see minutes there as a 3rd year player and somebody to come in and give a break cuz she can flat out play defense and then Sarah Puckett if Kellie needs a big guard in that two spot, she's going to step out and play some of those minutes because of her shooting abilities. Kellie also moved Rae, Rennia and Jordan around like that. So none of those that will see the significant minutes in the upcoming games, especially Florida State game played that much at all. 20 minutes or under, most likely to save their legs.They did seem to enjoy it as an experience and I'm really glad they quick organized that meet n greet after KJH said the other day they weren't going to.
But I still don't see any benefit basketballwise and I still wish they had the weekend off their legs.
It was glorious, wasn't it? My goodness. My feeling is that this game may be one of the most helpful losses in the history of the program. Some will think me insane or ridiculous for saying that, but I honestly feel like our players got THE biggest lesson ever in the difference between being "good" and being "great" they have ever gotten as athletes. You could see their eyes getting wide with amazement as they took it all in.My "like" vote was not enough to convey how right on you are here. Thanks, Ivocd.
Geno was the Villain, she played the role of the lead mercenary. If this was old school wrestling she would have been a great heel and the LV fans played the sweet old lady trying to hit her with their bag.She had a well-earned rep as a LV killer. One of the all-time greats for sure.
From her wikipedia page:
So, she made an extra effort to finish her degree.
She was a first gen college grad (and such students typically have a way above average attrition rates). So, there is a lot to suggest that DT was a reasonably conscientious student.
To your point, as academic institutions, Uconn and Tennessee have fairly comparable UG programs (DT was a sociology major). So, it is not like getting a degree from UT would have infinitely more demanding than one from Uconn.
I would argue that all our players knew quite well what a professional athlete is like since they've played with them, visited their games, seen them in camps, etc. I'd also say they were already painfully aware of the line between good and great since that is where 98% of them live. They know all too well the difference in their current level and a truly elite and skilled athlete. They practice with one every day.It was glorious, wasn't it? My goodness. My feeling is that this game may be one of the most helpful losses in the history of the program. Some will think me insane or ridiculous for saying that, but I honestly feel like our players got THE biggest lesson ever in the difference between being "good" and being "great" they have ever gotten as athletes. You could see their eyes getting wide with amazement as they took it all in.
They understand now what it means to be a professional athlete. They did not understand that before yesterday. And the joy they will each get from watching the extremely helpful film footage they now have of them facing some of the icons of the sport? It's immeasurable how helpful that film is going to be.