Sports

CSU-Pueblo wins big with D-1 transfer

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The CSU-Pueblo women’s basketball team couldn’t have been more enthusiastic coming into the ’06-’07 basketball season. With a little bit of luck the Pack improved drastically acquiring 6-foot 2-inch Lindsay Black from the University of New Mexico to be a presence on the inside.

It is no wonder that Black went to a D-1 university out of high school. While playing at Dakota Ridge High School, in Littleton, Colo., she was a 4 year standout being named to the all-conference team every year. It wasn’t just basketball Black excelled in. She could handle her own on the volleyball court and track as well, also being named a runner up for conference player of the year in volleyball.

She’s not just some jock though. Most people might not know that Black is a well-rounded student-athlete who carried a 3.3 GPA through high school, sang in her high school choir and impressively knows how to play four instruments.

So as anyone would imagine, she got plenty of offers coming out of high school, and was recruited to be a member of the Pack. She declined though, opting to go to the University of New Mexico.

“Honestly, I just wanted to go D-1,” Black admitted. Who can blame her? What high school standout stud athlete doesn’t jump at the chance to go to a division one school?

She picked a good D-1 to go to. UNM plays their home games at The Pit, where they currently are ranked fifth for attendance out of any D-1 women’s basketball team, which she still misses.

For Black though, the University of New Mexico wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. After suffering a back injury, the coach told her that it was just too frustrating and he didn’t want to deal with it. “He basically told me he wasn’t going to play me,” Black said.

More than just being on a D-1 team, she wanted to play. So still with two years of eligibility, she called up her high school friend, Jonnie Draper, who at the time had just finished her freshmen year at CSU-Pueblo.

“Jonnie had everything to do with me coming to CSU-Pueblo. I called her up and asked her what she would think about me going to play alongside her,” Black said. “She was so excited she said ‘I’m going to call my coach’, and hung up.”

When Draper called and woke up her sleeping coach, Kip Drown, he was excited, but even in his excitement couldn’t do much.

“Due to all the transfer rules, all I could tell Jonnie to tell her was that we would be interested. First, she had to get a release from UNM,” Coach Drown said. “Anytime you get the opportunity to get that kind of a player, it’s a tremendous improvement.”

Everything worked out, and Black was in uniform the next year for the Pack. The change in scenery has been nothing but pleasant for her and her new team.

“I couldn’t ask for more from my team. I love the girls, the coaches, it’s just a much better situation for me,” Black said.

After basketball is over for Black at CSU-Pueblo, she plans to use her degree in elementary education and become a teacher, and hopes to stay in Colorado. Wherever she gets the opportunity she’d love to coach college basketball.

The statistics Black brings to her team is one thing, but the experience and leadership she offers might be far more valuable.