Jamelle Elliott's only been in town since May, but it must seem like a lifetime for the new UC women's basketball coach. Did you catch the front sports page story in the Enquirer on her? Here's a link, in case you want to read it again: http://news.cincinnati.com/article/20091101/SPT0101/911020345/1064/+New+UC+women+s+coach+reaches+out
Since she came from Connecticut to take over the Bearcat basketball program, for Coach Elliott, life has been one big whirlwind. It comes with the territory, though, when you're rebuilding a program. The first phase of that process wrapped up Wednesday night, at the last of the 'house parties' that Coach Elliott and her staff have been visiting this fall.
The theory behind the get-togethers is a simple one--introduce Coach Elliott to the community. But it's a lot more than that. It's a way to show fans and alums that the University has a renewed commitment to women's basketball. And it's a way for her new home town to invest in the future of the program, and in the future of the players.
Because this is about much more than basketball, it's about supporting the student-athletes who work countless hours at their sport to represent UC. It's about showing young girls inspiring role models.
So far, hundreds have invested in the program. Season ticket sales have more than doubled from earlier years, courtside seats are sold out and Coach Elliott has purchased two dozen tickets for each game to donate to underprivileged children in the area.
The ball rolls out on the court for real on Sunday, November 15th. How Coach Elliott's team will do in her first year, no one can say for sure. But in the first six months, the program and the community have forged a tight bond that will do nothing but strengthen in years to come.