Monday, November 05, 2012

The Seniors

#32 C Heather Buck

This 5th-year Senior knows her role and knows it well. At this point in her career, Heather is UConn's 11th man and is strictly on the court to play defense, rebound, set screens, and get the Huskies second chance opportunities. The CT native is most comfortable doing all the "dirty, little" things for her teammates and we(and her teammates) love her for it. I don't think there is another player on this roster that has more fans rooting for good things to come her way than Buck. Scoring will always be just a bonus and usually will likely only come off second chance opportunities or late in blowouts. However, for her to get more court time this season, she needs to continue to do all those "dirty, little" things but also consistently hit 10-15 foot wide-open jumpers that opponents will dare her to take. 

Who doesn't love this 5th-year Senior (besides bitter Duke fans)? Caroline's season will come down to this very simple fact...staying healthy enough to play! When healthy, Sweet Caroline is as good a shooter as any in the country. And the girl is as tough as nails and loves to play. So you know when she's out, it is killing her. She is the emotional leader of this team and will play a large role in instilling confidence in her teammates as the competition gets tougher. If healthy enough to play, she is Geno's choice to start in the backcourt (has started 92 of her 93 career games at UConn) and rightfully so despite many fans thinking otherwise. She knows the system, has a great basketball IQ, is a great ball-handler, and has Championship experience. I (and Geno) will take those any day over raw talent. Look for her to play 18-20mpg against inferior competition but 25-28mpg against better competition because Geno loves her on the floor (even if she isn't scoring) when the going gets tough. And if the reports are correct, Geno says she is whole different player this year - more confident, mentally stronger, and understands she has to be cerebral.

#34 G Kelly Faris

Does anyone not think that if Geno had to play one person 40mpg every night, it would be Miss Kelly Faris? As the team's lone true Senior, Kelly is the clear leader and MVP of this UConn squad and the epitome of work ethic, heart, and drive. She is the very definition of an all-around player. She can score, pass, rebound, defend, and lead. She is by far the team's best one-on-one defender and would/could defend all 5 positions on the court, if her coach asked her to. Prior to her freshman season, Geno said she would never play a bad game at UConn and boy, if he was a betting man, he should have bet the farm. While she may have, in fact, had a few bad games along the way over the past 3 years, I wouldn't want any other player on our team in replacement of her even if you paid me (and we're taking about a career 6ppg scorer here folks). She's just the valuable!! Her shot needs to get much more consistent and she needs to look to score more when open, but other than that she's well on her way to what I predict to be her most impactful season yet.

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