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A blog on UConn women's basketball.

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

UConn's Stewart already preparing academically for national team duty

Not one to leave things to chance, UConn junior forward Breanna Stewart has already been meeting with her professors and academic advisors in case she is selected to the U.S. team competing in the FIBA World Championship for Women.

If that were to happen Stewart would be in Europe from Sept. 18 through Oct. 5 and that is a tremendous amount of class time that she would need to either catch up with or try to do while far away from UConn.

"It's already been thought out," Stewart said. "My weeks (on campus) have been going to class, workouts and meeting with professors making sure everything is under control and we are on the same page."

Stewart admits things could be significantly more challenging for UConn freshman Kia Nurse, a member of the Canadian national team which will also be playing in the World Championships.

"Academics wise she is going to have a harder time," Stewart said. "I don't think she is going to be able to do the online thing the way I an doing it because it is her first semester but she is a competitive person and she will figure it out, she will do fine. She is smart and I think that we all know she has been (playing) on the Canadian national team all summer and we are excited to spend a little bit of time for her while she is here and we will be with her for the next 10 months."

As Stewart mentioned, Nurse is currently on campus but soon she will return to training with the Canadian national team leading into the Sept. 15 international friendly between the U.S. and Canada at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport.

Stewart also addressed getting to play alongside and against five former UConn stars (Sue Bird, Tina Charles, Stefanie Dolson, Bria Hartley and Maya Moore) at training camp. 

"It is an awesome opportunity," Stewart said. "When you come to Connecticut, it is obviously like a family so they are going to help me in whatever way I can. I am looking forward to getting to know everyone better not just the UConn (grads)."

Stewart is expecting it to be business as usual when she squares off with former teammate Stefanie Dolson during the training camp.

"I think it is going to be the same thing (as practice)," Stewart said. "The way we practice here is the way we play and I am pretty sure it is going to be the same."

How about Dolson's rather interesting purple hair?
Stefanie Dolson and her purple hair was on display in this  photo
of my friend Ann's son during UConn football game vs. BYU

"I just saw her last weekend and it is vibrant," Stewart said. "She got bright."

So does Stewart anticipate going the purple hair route?

"No, not happening," Stewart said.

Stewart also gave her thoughts on the freshmen

"I think they are excited to be here," Stewart said. "They have wanted to be here for a while and they are here looking to do whatever they can to do better and learn as much as they can."

And for her thoughts on the returning players

"Everyone has really gotten better," Stewart said. "Kiah Stokes is going to have to step up big time and she knows that, she is going to embrace that. Everyone who was on last year's team still wants to prove something and show that we are not satisfied (after) winning two national championships, we want to keep it going."

Finally, there's a chance that UConn will announce the breakdown of home games at Gampel Pavilion, the XL Center and the one game played in Bridgeport by the end of the week.


Anonymous Joe said...

For those players who rise to Geno's challenge, the results are just amazing. If Kiah Stokes can continue her maturation and development, let's hope for another 3-peat!

9:54 AM 

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