What better way to kick off our summer edition of the BasketBlog that with one of Notre Dame's most popular players, rising junior center Erica Williamson.

BasketBlog: Can't We Just Start The Season Now?

May 8, 2008

You’re probably all getting that feeling right about now; the one, where maybe a month or two after the season, you’re raring and ready to go again. You’ve got your witty signs and slogans all ready to go. You have your fingers crossed for which player your section will be responsible for (and I apologize ahead of time because I can’t be in everyone’s section, although they all want me – just kidding! 🙂 ). And most of all, you can’t wait to see the Notre Dame Women’s Basketball team back in action. Don’t worry everyone! While we don’t have actual games coming up or anything, we do have a temporary basketball release — BASKETBLOGS!!!

I know you love them and I know you love Stephanie Menio (our director of basketball operations) and Chris Masters (our sports information director) for putting them all together. It’s your chance to get to know some of the players in a new light, rather than just watching them run, jump and shoot a basketball. For our incoming freshmen, it’s a way to get to know them a little bit, and of course to get a head start on any catchy lines or phrases that could be printed on signs (fingers crossed to be shown on ESPN or CBS College Sports too!). So here you have it … the summer 2008 edition of Notre Dame Women’s Basketball BASKETBLOGS! I’m happy to share this introductory occasion with all of you. Thank you ahead of time for tuning in.

Hello ALL!! (do I really have to introduce myself again? I just blabbed on for two whole paragraphs about blogging and how amazing it is! Ha ha)

As some of you may or may not know, it’s exam week. FINALS. The week every single college student dreads. Once it’s over, though, life is fantastic and a breeze compared to the previous semester. The hard part is just getting through the week. Right now, I’ve already taken two of my exams that I feel excellent about, but I had my hardest one earlier today at … get this … 8 AM! I don’t know why on earth they make college students take exams at 8 AM, when we are barely even away for our 8:30 AM classes all semester long, and most of us define `early’ as in the 9-10 o’clock, if not later, range. P.S. … don’t worry, I’m writing this during one of my `study breaks.’ I have to take them every once in a while to stay sane.

Many of you might wonder with finals and everything — how are we keeping up with our lifting and conditioning? Of course, all of this is voluntary, but because our team is so dedicated to the sport that we love, most of us are still lifting twice a week and getting our conditioning in when we can. Once we all get home as well, we start with our summer workouts that our coaches have given us and with the strength and conditioning program our strength coaches, Tony Rolinski and Craig Cheek, have given us. The workouts we get from our coaches come from our individual position coaches (Angie Potthoff-Barber is mine … shout out to G!! 🙂 ).

Each of the workouts is catered to our specific skill-sets and what we need to improve on over the summer. Guards might have dribbling or a lot of 15 ft. to 3 pt. land shooting. Personally, I’m focusing on some hook shots near the basket and expanding my mid-post and high-post game to become more well-rounded and harder to defend. As Angie and Coach McGraw told me, the better you are at your outside game, the better your inside game gets. The defender is forced to play you closer in the mid and high post (because you’re so deadly from there), therefore giving a) your teammates more room to work and b) a better chance to drive or beat your defender to the basket. All in all, our summer workouts really do help to fine-tune a lot of the little things that will help make us individually better, and of course when put together, our team gets that much stronger, higher-skilled, and harder to defend. I know everyone loves to hear that!

Well, I guess my study break is coming to a close. It’s back to studying for Biology for me! Right now I’m going over what determines muscle strength and endurance. I’ll let you know later what the answer is, and help use that answer to our teams benefit next year! Have a great beginning of the summer, and enjoy the rest of the BasketBlogs to come from my teammates. We all love our fans and can’t believe how supportive you all are, ALL THE TIME! Thanks for everything you do, and everything you will do next season.

Oh, and before I forget and miss my opportunity, here are a few things to note:

  • I will be working our camps in June. They are going to be a BLAST this year! My personal favorite is Day Camp, simply because I LOVE little kids, and also because we get to have Crazy Hat Day, Crazy Sock Day … basically all the crazies, and well, those days are just short of amazing (and actually allow me to be a 5-year old again).
  • A very Happy Mother’s Day most importantly to my mom, Donna (who I love so dearly), my grandmother, and all you other mothers out there. You mean the world to your children, and if we don’t get the chance to thank you enough, this is our day to do so. So, THANK YOU! Moms are amazing!
  • And last but not least, a BIG congratulations goes out to my two big brothers, Reid and Adam, who are both graduating from college this month. I’m sorry to use this blog as an advertisement or congrats card … but I wanted to say that I’m very proud of you two and the choices you make in life. You’re the best big brothers and role models a little sister could ask for. I love you both very much, and I can’t wait to see the successes that life holds for you.

Back to the fans … THANK YOU again for all that you do. I hope you have enjoyed this little introduction to the Notre Dame Women’s Basketball Summer BasketBlogs experience. God Bless and have a great month of May!

Go Irish!

Erica Williamson
Class of 2010
#52 in your program, #1 in your heart!