So I'm talking with Rebecca Lobo the other day...
Oh, did I say Rebecca Lobo? Well, yes, indeed I did...hey, if you're gonna namedrop, make it a big name.
Rebecca Lobo, the NCAA champion, gold medal winner, WNBA founding member, was kind enough to chat with me this past week for my WVXU sports radio interview show, "The Front Row." You'll be hearing her complete interview in the coming weeks, but let me give you just a preview of what she said about UC's new women's head basketball coach, Jamelle Elliott.
Jamelle, you see, was a teammate of Rebecca's on that first UConn national championship team in the mid '90s. So she knows Jamelle the person, Jamelle the player and Jamelle the assistant coach. "Jamelle was one of these players who was always passionate about the game. And I promise you, she'll have her players hustling, playing all out and playing with the passion she had on our team."
Nice words, coming from someone who's seen the best the world has to offer in women' basketball, in college, in the pros and in the Olympics. And in her current job as an analyst for women's basketball for ESPN, she sees the best in the current teams, too. While she gives props to UConn, Tennessee and Baylor for this upcoming season, she also heaps praise on the UC program.
"Give her some time, and Jamelle will have them playing at the top of the conference," said Lobo. "I know that the Bearcats were projected to finish 16th in the BIG EAST this season, and I also know she'll work hard to get them to finish anywhere but last."
It's been amazing how the UConn family has rallied around Jamelle Elliott and her staff as they rebuild the Bearcat program. From Geno Auriemma coming to her inaugural news conference to the UConn team making a welcoming video for her at her first UC game, Jamelle has had all the backing and well wishes of Husky Nation that anyone could ask. Rebecca just solidified what most of us believe: Jamelle Elliott was, and is, the correct choice to take this program to the next level, to the BIG EAST elite. Stick around and watch what happens.