They get no respect, no respect I tell ya.
The Rodney Dangerfield saying is the best way to describe our women’s basketball team this season. It’s the only FAMU team that is playing like pre-season conference champions instead of a team that was predicted to finish third.
Early in the MEAC conference season, the Lady Rattlers are off to a 7-6 record. Five of their six losses were to teams in the Big 10, Southeastern and Atlantic Coast conferences who have a combined 44-20 record.
Led by 2003 MEAC Player of the Year senior center Kim Watson, the Lady Rattlers use an inside-out style of basketball that may land them in the NCAA tournament.
With the talent and the coaching to win the MEAC, the Lady Rattlers still get less respect than their male counterparts who are touting a 3-10 record and are expected to go far in the conference tournament.
Sunday’s Tallahassee Democrat exemplifies the lack of respect for the team. Heath Smith wrote a story about the men’s team beating Hampton for its first conference win of the season, neglecting the fact that a better game preceded the men’s.
It was a game in which the women battled Hampton in an up-and-down game that came down to the wire, with the Lady Rattlers pulling out a 56-54 win over the defending conference champs.
Head Coach Debra Clark has done just as well coaching as men’s coach Mike Gillespie has, but Gillespie is the one who gets all the media attention.
I’m not an expert on women’s basketball, and I don’t usually watch a women’s basketball games unless FAMU or a top 25 team is playing, but credit must be given where credit is due.
The Lady Rattler basketball team has certainly earned credit from this writer and hopefully from every true Rattler as well.
Will Brown is a sophomore broadcast journalism student from Rockledge, Fla. He is the sports editor for The Famuan. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.