Sat., Mar 24, 2018  





Former JD star Walker waiting for debut with Crimson Tide

Former Jeff Davis star Jasmine Walker is patiently waiting for her debut with the Alabama women’s basketball team on Dec. 17. The Tide opens the season on Friday against Alabama A&M. (Photo courtesy

By Tim Gayle
RRS Correspondent
(November 9, 2017)

The date is circled on the calendar: Dec. 17, 2 p.m., Coleman Coliseum.

The Alabama women’s basketball team makes its official debut on Friday with a game against Alabama A&M at Coleman Coliseum, but head coach Kristy Curry would be quick to mention that Dec. 17 game against Southern Methodist as well.

That’s because that day will mark the Crimson Tide debut of Jasmine Walker.

The former Jeff Davis standout, the 2016 Miss Basketball and Gatorade Player of the Year, initially signed with Florida State out of high school but elected to transfer last year after spending a year with the Seminoles. As a mid-year transfer, she will not be eligible to play until Dec. 17.

“I think she’ll be an impact,” Curry predicted. “The thing is, she’s a freshman, basically, so she just needs some experience. But she’s one of the hardest working players in practice. We always say minutes are earned in practice and if we were tipping off today, she would play minutes and make an impact. She is so much fun to coach.”

What makes Curry’s statement even more impactful is the fact she’ll have to send one of her returning starters to the bench to make room for Walker. Alabama returns its entire squad from last season, including starting seniors Quanetria “NeNe” Bolton and Hannah Cook, junior Shaquera Wade and sophomores Ashley Knight and Jordan Lewis, along with fifth-year senior Ashley Williams and the rest of Curry’s initial signing class: Alana Da Silva, Coco Knight and Meoshonti Knight.

That’s why Curry is so optimistic about the Tide reaching the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1999.

“That’s what we feel like this team was designed to do, to compete for an opportunity to win an SEC championship and to compete for an NCAA Tournament berth for the first time in 19 years,” she said. “We feel like we’ve taken the steps necessary. We return more points than anyone in the SEC, return everyone along with four new faces.

“We enter the year with great optimism and great excitement.”
And while Walker’s impact will be felt on the court, it’s already making waves in the recruiting world, Curry noted. The 6-foot-3 forward did not seriously consider Alabama out of high school, choosing Florida State over Auburn and several other schools.

“The thing is, it’s a huge statement that she believes in this program,” Curry said, “that Alabama basketball is a great place to be and we’re going to make it special again. I think she’s a kid that wants to be first and that says a lot about her. We’re keeping them at home. It’s because of Nini Bolton and Shaquera Wade and now Jasmine Walker has put the exclamation point on that.”

The early signing period, which opens today, is expected to land the Crimson Tide the junior college player of the year and two more in-state players who have played on state championship teams: Shelton State’s Cierra Johnson, who initially signed with Alabama in 2016 out of Blount, along with Allie Craig-Cruce and Hannah Barber.

“It’s huge,” Curry said. “If it’s good enough for Jasmine Walker, it can be good enough for me. Great players want to play with one another, so that’s just been huge for us. And moving to Coleman Coliseum (sends a message that) women’s basketball at Alabama is very important and it’s very important to Jasmine.”

Walker, meanwhile, is working hard in preparation for her Dec. 17 debut.

“The way we’re practicing right now is no different than the way we’ll be practicing then,” Curry said. “We’re acting as if she’s going to play on Nov. 10.”

Alabama opens its season on Friday at home against Alabama A&M. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.


Bookmark and Share
Latest Updates
Adams Drugs
Carver football looking for new coach after Spears steps down
NOTEBOOK: Grider leaves Park Crossing; Purifoy retains eligibility
PREP BASEBALL: Macon East beats Autauga Academy in possible title showdown preview
Campbellsville eliminates Faulkner from NAIA tourney
PREP BASEBALL: St. James takes advantage of LAMP miscues in series sweep; ACA wins series
Spear pitches no-hitter to lead ACA over Trinity; ACA baseball wins
SPECIAL REPORT: Montgomery tennis facilties lagging behind rival cities
Faulkner women's basketball gets NAIA national tourney invite
Carver boys bring home 'Blue map'
JASON ARMSTRONG CLASSIC: Trinity, LAMP earn key wins

What's Happening
SportsTalk -RIVER REGION SPORTS, 1300 WTLS/106.5 FM, 12-2 p.m. (click to listen)
CBASE - Alabama at Tennessee, 5:30 p.m. (WTLS 106.5 FM)
CBASE - Auburn at Kentucky, 5:30 p.m.
CBASE - Troy at La LaFayette, 6 p.m.
CBASE - AUM at Lee Unv., 5 p.m.
CBASE - Blue Mtn State at Faulkner, 6 p.m.
CBASE - Greensboro at Huntingdon, 6 p.m.
CSOFT - Ole Miss at Alabama, 6:30 p.m.
CSOFT - Kentucky at Auburn, 6 p.m.
CSOFT - Alabama St at Prairie View, 3 p.m.
CSOFT - AUM at Lee Unv, 4 p.m.
CSOFT - Faulkner at Mobile (DH), 3 p.m.
CBASE - Alabama at Tennessee, 5 p.m. (WTLS 106.5 FM/ SEC Network)
CBASE - Auburn at Kentucky, 11 a.m. (SEC Network)
CBASE - Troy at La LaFayette, 2 p.m.
CBASE - AUM at Lee Unv (DH), 11 a.m.
CBASE - Blue Mtn State at Faulkner (DH), 1 p.m.
CBASE - Greensboro at Huntingdon, 3 p.m.
CSOFT - Ole Miss at Alabama, 2 p.m.
CSOFT - Kentucky at Auburn, 8 p.m. (SEC Network)
CSOFT - La LaFayette at Troy (DH), 1 p.m.
CSOFT - Alabama St at Prairie View (DH), 12 p.m.
CSOFT - AUM at Lee Unv (DH), 12 p.m.
CSOFT - Faulkner at Wm Carey (DH), 1 p.m.
CSOFT - Brevard at Huntingdon (DH), 1 p.m.
WBB - NIT Elite 8: Alabama at Va Tech, 1 p.m.
CBASE - Alabama at Tennessee, 2 p.m. (WTLS 106.5 FM/ SEC Network)
CBASE - Auburn at Kentucky, 1 p.m.
CBASE - Troy at La LaFayette, 1 p.m.
CBASE - Greensboro at Huntingdon, 12 p.m.
CSOFT - Ole Miss at Alabama, 1:30 p.m.
CSOFT - Kentucky at Auburn, 2 p.m.
CSOFT - La LaFayette at Troy, 12 p.m.
CSOFT - Piedmont at Huntingdon (DH), 12 p.m.
HSBASE - AHSAA Weekly Schedule (click)
HSSOFT - AHSAA Weekly Schedule (click)
HSSOC - AHSAA Boys Weekly Schedule (click)
HSSOC - AHSAA Girls Weekly Schedule (click)
For the listings of all AHSAA Spring Sports schedules, click here


Untitled Document