Grizzle makes the best out of every situation

Photo courtesy: FAMU Athletics

Ahriahna Grizzle is a standout student-athlete at Florida A&M University hailing from Toronto, Canada. As the starting point guard for FAMU’s women’s basketball team, Grizzle led the team’s historic journey to its first SWAC championship appearance this year.

Although this was a goal Grizzle was proud of, she faced some adversity along the way.

In 2019, Grizzle left her loved ones behind in Toronto at age 18 when she moved to the United States to pursue her college athletic career. 

“It was really hard for me to leave my family,” Grizzle said. 

After three seasons at the University of Alabama, Grizzle decided to move once more, coming to FAMU under the influence of her best friend Mide Oriyomi, who was also a guard at FAMU.

“I wanted my best friend to come to play basketball with me at FAMU because I knew she would be a good asset to the team,” Oriyomi said.

In Grizzle’s first season at FAMU, she earned SWAC Player of the Week, ranked second on the team in points, and led the team in steals and assists. Unfortunately, at the end of the season, coach Pillow resigned, leaving Grizzle fearful of who the new head coach would be. 

On July 28, 2023, Olympic gold medalist Bridgette Gordon was announced as the new head coach for the FAMU women’s basketball program. 

As Grizzle began hee season under the leadership of Gordon, they were committed to building their relationship with one another. 

“Gordon is tough, but she is so inspiring,” Grizzle said. Gordon prioritized pushing Grizzle to be the best player and leader she could be for the team. 

“I always told Ahriahna to be where your heart and your feet are, live in the moment, and be present,” Gordon said. 

This relationship resulted in Grizzle becoming one of the most influential players in the history of FAMU basketball. Grizzle earned SWAC Player of the Year, recording 536 points, 103 rebounds, 84 assists and 67 steals, and she led her team to their first-ever SWAC championship appearance. Grizzle is now marked down in history at FAMU as the sixth woman to score over 500 points in a season.

Not only did Grizzle persevere through family separation, university transfers and coaching changes, but the psychology major made the best out of every situation. Grizzle always believed she was exactly where she needed to be.