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Feb. 11, 2007

Smith, Wiggins: All-America Candidates

The Cardinal Rule

February 10, 2007

I can't believe it's been four years. I remember the day coach told me I made the team. It was the last week of October on a Tuesday. As a young girl it was always a dream of mine to play for Stanford.

My senior year in high school I had to make a tough decision. I could either play basketball at a small school or go to Stanford and possibly have to give up basketball. I decided to come to Stanford because I knew if basketball didn't work out at least I would get a great education. When I initially tried out for the team I didn't make it. Fortunately I was given the next best thing. I was allowed to be a practice player and be a part of this special program.

I remember that Tuesday the team had a late practice. A couple practice guys and I scrimmaged against the team for an hour or so. Before the scrimmage, I remember thinking to myself: 'if you can't play with the team, the next best thing would be to play against them'.

I had the opportunity to play against some of the best players in the nations. I had the opportunity to play against the same players I stood in long lines to get their autographs. I had the opportunity to develop friendships with some of the greatest people in the world. This was an opportunity that millions of people would give up anything for. After the scrimmage, coach called me over and told me I made the team. It seems so unreal so I just stood there speechless. I knew it was official when Coach Tucker told me I would have a locker by Monday.

My four years here have been great. I feel like I've improved so much since my freshman year. My ball-handling has improved, I'm shooting a lot better and I'm a lot more comfortable and confident when I'm in the game. This year has been so exciting thus far. It seems like our team is getting better and better everyday. The guards are pushing the ball well, the posts are unstoppable inside and our team defense is great.

As many of you probably have heard JJ got hurt in the Cal game and is out for the season. I feel sorry for the rest of the teams that have to face us. Our team is now playing for something bigger than a championship. We are playing for JJ. This is a special team and this will be a special year. I hope you will continue to come out and witness this incredible journey.

Go Card!!!
Markisha Coleman

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