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Coach Walz Blog #9

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Well, January is wrapping up and we're one step closer to MARCH MADNESS.

 

We have seven games left in the next four weeks before AAC Tournament play. We are headed down the homestretch.  Every game has helped prepare us for the postseason which is just a month away. I'm proud of what we're doing and we'll take these next seven games one game at a time.  One win at a time is what I'm focused on.

 

Our Rutgers game last week was a big win for us.  We've never won at Rutgers since we joined the BIG EAST Conference.  It was also one of the toughest road games on our schedule this year.  Rutgers gave us a good game but we were able to execute at the end of the game and came away with a great road victory. 

 

Two games later, we traveled to Orlando to play UCF.  This game, however, showcased the spurts we continue to go through.  All within a single game, we'll make unbelievable runs, move the ball with ease, do a great job of not turning the ball over, and stack up a double-digit lead.  We have the ability to put good teams away, yet we still haven't been able to consistently do that.  Even though we brought home the win against UCF, our game this Sunday at Connecticut will be a different story.

 

 I'm sure this is the most anticipated game on our schedule for everyone- the fans, media, and players.  It'll be our most challenging game this year and the best practice we will get to see where we are as a team.  UConn is a great team that is very well-coached.  In order for us to compete with them, we'll have to put together our best game of the year.  The game will be one of the toughest environments we have played in all season.  We'll have to leave everything out there on the court to have a chance to win.    

 

In other news... My baby girl Lola is coming up on 8 months!  I think she looks more and more like me every day.  Follow me on Twitter @coachjeffwalz to see pictures of her.

 

Follow the team Twitter @UofLWBB. Stay up to date on Louisville Women's Basketball news through this blog and GoCards.com.  Also check out the official team Instagram @UofLWBB, Facebook page University of Louisville Women's Basketball, and YouTube channel University of Louisville Cardinals.  You can follow me directly on Twitter and Instagram @coachjeffwalz, and Jeff J Walz on Facebook

 

Jeff Walz Blog #8

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Happy New Year Cardinal fans!

 

It's back to business for us.  We brought home a win vs Temple on New Year's Day, and followed up 3 days later with a win at home vs Cincinnati.  The girls started classes last Monday, so we're back to our regular class and practice schedule.  Other than the -8 degree temperature we averaged here for two days last week, I guess I have no complaints.

 

What a win over South Florida last week.  They are a tough team that leaves it all on the court every time we play them.  They turned a 17-point lead in the second half into a 2-point game.  I have to give them credit for that.  And that's what we really have to work on - making sure we're playing a smooth, consistent, 40-minute game.  We fouled USF way too much and as a result, gave them free-throws to make it a close game.  But we stayed focused enough to take the win in their home arena.  Antonita made her second appearance back, but Jude is still out with an ankle sprain.  We hope to have her back on the court very soon.  I'm fortunate to be coaching a team with great depth this year, but I also want to make sure that the girls are as healthy as can be for the AAC conference tournament and the NCAA tournament.

 

Tournament time is coming quickly.  The NCAA announced that we (the city of Louisville) will be 1 of the 4 sites for the Women's Regionals round of the NCAA Tournament.  Tickets are on sale now.  The games will be held between March 29 and April 1.  We hope to see you and everyone you know there.  The team, staff and I are putting in the hours every single day to play at this site and have a hometown crowd pack out the KFC Yum! Center.

 

Until next time...

 

Follow the team Twitter @UofLWBB us to win tickets to a few games!  Stay up to date on Louisville Women's Basketball news through this blog and GoCards.com.  Also check out the official team Instagram @UofLWBB, YouTube at University of Louisville Cardinals, and Facebook at University of Louisville Women's Basketball.  You can follow me directly on Twitter and Instagram @coachjeffwalz, and Jeff J Walz on Facebook.  

Jeff Walz Blog #7

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The weekly radio show with Matt Andrews of Bats Radio began about two weeks ago.  Matt is also our play-by-play announcer so it's always a great time when we get together to talk about what's happening with the team.  The show is also a great opportunity for fans to call in and ask questions.  The next show airs live on December 30 @ 6pm.  You can listen to it on ESPN 680 AM and on the Tune In app (you can download it from the App Store and Google Play Store).  It also streams on-line at ESPNLouisville.com.  Call me during the next show at 502-267-9680 to ask any questions!

 

In team news...Antonita is doing well.  She's with us at every practice and every game.  The coaching staff, team and I definitely appreciate everyone's concerns, prayers and well wishes for her.  

 

We played Austin Peay last Saturday.  I thought we did a much better job of taking care of the basketball that game.  We only had eight turnovers, which was well below our goal for the game.  In practice, we've been working on making the extra pass and valuing every offensive possession.  Guess it's paying off.  This game was also Jude's first start since coming to the team.  She did a great job stepping up, as usual.

 

We left for Ball State on Monday morning.  We had the opportunity to practice for Tuesday's game against Ball State at Banker's Life Fieldhouse, where the Pacers and Fever play.  We also caught the Pacers-Pistons game that night.  Being at the Fieldhouse was an amazing experience.  Our strategy against Ball State was to put the pressure on them early and to get a quick lead.  The girls stuck to the game plan and we brought home the win.

 

Hope to see you at the KFC YUM! Center for our next game on Saturday against No. 11 Colorado.  We'll take a short Christmas break and then continue the season also at the YUM! on Dec. 29 vs Southern Methodist.

 

Happy Holidays!

 

Follow the team Twitter @UofLWBB us to win tickets to a few games!  Stay up to date on Louisville Women's Basketball news through this blog and GoCards.com.  Also check out the official team Instagram @UofLWBB, YouTube at University of Louisville Cardinals, and Facebook at University of Louisville Women's Basketball.  You can follow me directly on Twitter and Instagram @coachjeffwalz, and Jeff J Walz on Facebook.  

Jeff Walz Blog #6

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Since my last blog, we've played solid games against Florida State and Ohio.  The fans and I saw two new faces stepped up and scored season highs- Shawnta' with 15 and Megan with 12.  FSU became our second overtime win this year.  We did an amazing job of forcing turnovers that game with 26, to help come back from a 15-point deficit.  I was most proud to see our NCAA Runner-Up banner revealed during the pregame ceremony. 

 

The day before Thanksgiving, we competed against Western Kentucky in Bowling Green.  This game was special for me because, in a sense, I got to return to where I served as an Assistant Coach under my mentor and Head Coach Paul Sanderford.  It was even more special because I got to coach against my former assistant Michelle Clark-Heard.  She was part of my staff for five seasons and has been doing a great job building the WKU program in the two years that she has been Head Coach.  The crowd got involved and made it an exciting game. 

 

The game against Kentucky was a fight.  We did a great job in the first half but despite the team's effort we had too many turnovers in the second half and gave up too many rebounds.  Of course we prepared hard for this game and we would've liked to win, but we also know that games like this don't define our season.  What they do is give us important lessons to learn from.  We will make the improvements necessary to continue building momentum for the season. 

 

Our next big game will be this Saturday at the KFC Yum! Center against Wright State.  The Raiders are ranked No. 12 in the Mid-Major poll and has been successful this season in knocking off two solid teams - NC State and James Madison.  We want all of our Card fans to come out and support us against this competitive team!

 

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! 

 

Until next time...

 

Follow the team Twitter @UofLWBB us to win tickets to a few games!  Stay up to date on Louisville Women's Basketball news through this blog and GoCards.com.  Also check out the official team Instagram @UofLWBB, YouTube at University of Louisville Cardinals, and Facebook at University of Louisville Women's Basketball.  You can follow me directly on Twitter and Instagram @coachjeffwalz, and Jeff J Walz on Facebook.  

Jeff Walz Blog #5

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It's been a crazy week so let's get right into it...

 

We signed on five amazingly talented recruits last Wednesday:  Sydney Brackemyre, Arica Carter, Ariana Freeman, Myisha Hines-Allen and Mariya Moore.  The skill set and individual qualities that they'll bring to our team is exciting.  I take each season practice by practice, one game at a time.  But I'd be lying if I said I'm not already hopeful about next season.  We'll have a very young team with a lot of heart and passion, but also a lot of work to get them college-caliber ready. 

 

The same day I made the announcement about our recruiting class, we took on No. 14 LSU at home to continue the WNIT tournament.  It was a close game until the final minutes of the second half.  My girls took advantage of a solid lead and were able to go on a 21-0 run that contributed to the win.  I think our home crowd enjoyed the FREE DRINKS on me just as much as the game.  ESPN and USA Today got a good story out of it, but it was really just a way for me to thank our supporters and to encourage more locals to come out and enjoy the game.  Everyone had a great time.

 

Two days later, we traveled to Norman, Oklahoma to play against the No. 11 Oklahoma Sooners in the WNIT Championship Game.  Talk about duking it out!  That game was truly a battle on the court.  We struggled throughout the first half.  At one point, we were down by 15 but then Tia caught fire and began taking the lead in scoring.  The girls continued to fight and Jude made two crucial layups that took us into overtime.  We eventually brought home the win with Tia scoring her career high 23 points, as well as Sara and Asia being named to the all-tournament team.  The most amazing part of this trip was that thousands of Native Americans waited after the game to get autographs from Shoni and Jude- and they spent almost three hours signing every last one of them! 

 

Our schedule continues with two upcoming games at the KFC Yum! Center...Ohio tomorrow and Florida State on Sunday.  Be sure to come out with your friends and family, and tag me in a few photos!

 

Follow the team Twitter @UofLWBB us to win tickets to a few games!  Stay up to date on Louisville Women's Basketball news through this blog and GoCards.com.  Also check out the official team Instagram @UofLWBB, YouTube at University of Louisville Cardinals, and Facebook at University of Louisville Women's Basketball.  You can follow me directly on Twitter and Instagram @coachjeffwalz, and Jeff J Walz on Facebook.  

Jeff Walz Blog #4

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"1st game prep, Cool guy steps, Locker room chat, On to the next

....Season awaiting, Music is blazing, Warm up drills for the fans anticipating

...This is habitual, Game time critical, Catch me on the next Coach Walz Scoop Lyrical." 

 

Just a preview of my thoughts as the team, staff and I prepared for our 1st game last Tuesday against Pikeville.  This exhibition game was the first piece of basketball action this season that our fans saw us take part in.  It was also our Elementary School Day.  Over 4,000 students joined us at the YUM Center to watch the game.  The girls were pumped and energy was high.  I couldn't wait to get a few initial observations of our game play.  Overall, I thought it was a solid effort from my girls.  We were able to run a lot of plays that we're still mastering in practice.  The team chemistry was also good, which carried over into Saturday's game against Loyola University Chicago. 

 

We have amazing depth this year; in both games, at least 11 of our 14 players scored.  When I bring the starting five out, the next five are able to continue the momentum with no hesitation.   So I'm really excited about the depth and talent we have this year, especially with Tia, Asia and Shawnta' coming off of injuries from last season.  In our first game, it was an honor to coach against Hall of Fame player Sheryl Swoopes.  She is going to do great things at Loyola.

 

Our preseason WNIT continued with our game against Quinnipiac last night.  This is a very talented team that came to compete.  Offensively, I thought we were solid.  But to make it to Nashville, we have to do a better job of stopping teams.  We have to become more defensive-minded.  We brought home a win, and next up is LSU tomorrow.  The first 2,500 fans to show up will get free beer on me...of course, you have to be 21 or older ;-)  See you and your family there!

 

Follow the team Twitter @UofLWBB us to win tickets to a few games!  Stay up to date on Louisville Women's Basketball news through this blog and GoCards.com.  Also check out the official team Instagram @UofLWBB, YouTube at University of Louisville Cardinals, and Facebook at University of Louisville Women's Basketball.  You can follow me directly on Twitter and Instagram @coachjeffwalz, and Jeff J Walz on Facebook

 

 

GO CARDS!

Coach Walz Weekly Blog #3

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What's going on, readers?!  I hope you've been staying up to date with the team and me.  Man, it's been a hectic, yet amazing past week.  Let me fill you in on a few exciting events that we've been part of...

 

We were invited to attend this year's Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Awards at the Muhammad Ali Center here in Louisville on October 3.  What an honor it was to be a part of this special evening.  Like the ESPYs, we got to walk down the red carpet.  For me, the best part of the night was shaking hands with the greatest fighter ever:  Muhammad Ali!!  It was so inspiring to just be around him.  I'm sure the girls enjoyed meeting Christina Aguilera the most.

 

On October 9, we hosted our Tip-Off Luncheon at the Crowne Plaza Hotel.  We had a great turnout, so much  support and love from fans and media.  Over 800 people joined us to celebrate the beginning of a new season.  You could feel the excitement increase in the room when the girls introduced themselves.  Best of all, when I got up to speak, I gave the supporters incredible news that wasn't even officially released until two hours later:  the NCAA made Louisville a 2014 Regional Host!  This means that we'll have our work cut out for us to make sure we return home to our fans for the tournament.  This announcement is big not only for Louisville fans, but also for fans of women's basketball.  The ability to play at a state-of-the-art facility like the KFC YUM! Center in a city that's nationally ranked and recognized for its college sports helps elevate the perception and importance of women's college basketball.  So I challenge you- EVERY SUPPORTER- to attend every regional game and, of course, to support our team.  You all play a crucial role in moves like this happening. 

 

Our football team hosted Rutgers on October 10 to a crowd of 55, 168.  We brought home a 24-10 win and our Heisman candidate Teddy Bridgewater had nearly 30 NFL scouts come to see him perform.  Teddy is a great guy with a great story, and we hope nothing but the best for him.  The end of the third quarter was my favorite moment, though.  The team and I were called onto the field and acknowledged for our run at last year's NCAA tournament.  We also received our National Runner-Up rings...weighty and blinged-out!  See a picture of it on my Instagram.

 

The next day we held our Staff vs. Players Kickball Game at the football complex practice field.  The staff won, of course.  Coach Purcell named himself honorary MVP.  We actually had a delay of game because he kicked the ball into the field goal net, which got stuck, and we had to wait for someone to bring us another ball.  And then Emmonnie did the exact same thing.  We had a blast, though.  The girls will have to bring a stronger game next time if they want to take the title.

 

Until next time...

 

To get information on or to purchase season, group, or individual tickets to the 2013-2014 women's basketball season contact the UofL Athletic ticket office at (502) 852-7254 or email jonathan@gocards.com

 

Stay up to date on Louisville Women's Basketball news through this blog and GoCards.com.  You can follow the team on Twitter and Instagram @UofLWBB, YouTube at University of Louisville Cardinals, and Facebook at University of Louisville Women's Basketball.  You can also follow me on Twitter and Instagram @coachjeffwalz.  

Coach Walz Weekly Blog #3

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What's going on, readers?!  I hope you've been staying up to date with the team and me.  Man, it's been a hectic, yet amazing past week.  Let me fill you in on a few exciting events that we've been part of...

 

We were invited to attend this year's Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Awards at the Muhammad Ali Center here in Louisville on October 3.  What an honor it was to be a part of this special evening.  Like the ESPYs, we got to walk down the red carpet.  For me, the best part of the night was shaking hands with the greatest fighter ever:  Muhammad Ali!!  It was so inspiring to just be around him.  I'm sure the girls enjoyed meeting Christina Aguilera the most.

 

On October 9, we hosted our Tip-Off Luncheon at the Crowne Plaza Hotel.  We had a great turnout, so much  support and love from fans and media.  Over 800 people joined us to celebrate the beginning of a new season.  You could feel the excitement increase in the room when the girls introduced themselves.  Best of all, when I got up to speak, I gave the supporters incredible news that wasn't even officially released until two hours later:  the NCAA made Louisville a 2014 Regional Host!  This means that we'll have our work cut out for us to make sure we return home to our fans for the tournament.  This announcement is big not only for Louisville fans, but also for fans of women's basketball.  The ability to play at a state-of-the-art facility like the KFC YUM! Center in a city that's nationally ranked and recognized for its college sports helps elevate the perception and importance of women's college basketball.  So I challenge you- EVERY SUPPORTER- to attend every regional game and, of course, to support our team.  You all play a crucial role in moves like this happening. 

 

Our football team hosted Rutgers on October 10 to a crowd of 55, 168.  We brought home a 24-10 win and our Heisman candidate Teddy Bridgewater had nearly 30 NFL scouts come to see him perform.  Teddy is a great guy with a great story, and we hope nothing but the best for him.  The end of the third quarter was my favorite moment, though.  The team and I were called onto the field and acknowledged for our run at last year's NCAA tournament.  We also received our National Runner-Up rings...weighty and blinged-out!  See a picture of it on my Instagram.

 

The next day we held our Staff vs. Players Kickball Game at the football complex practice field.  The staff won, of course.  Coach Purcell named himself honorary MVP.  We actually had a delay of game because he kicked the ball into the field goal net, which got stuck, and we had to wait for someone to bring us another ball.  And then Emmonnie did the exact same thing.  We had a blast, though.  The girls will have to bring a stronger game next time if they want to take the title.

 

Until next time...

 

To get information on or to purchase season, group, or individual tickets to the 2013-2014 women's basketball season contact the UofL Athletic ticket office at (502) 852-7254 or email jonathan@gocards.com

 

Stay up to date on Louisville Women's Basketball news through this blog and GoCards.com.  You can follow the team on Twitter and Instagram @UofLWBB, YouTube at University of Louisville Cardinals, and Facebook at University of Louisville Women's Basketball.  You can also follow me on Twitter and Instagram @coachjeffwalz.  

Head Coach Jeff Walz's Blog Update

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Recruiting season is back in full effect!  My staff and I were on the road for most of September, hoping to bring the best basketball talent to our program here at Louisville.  Recruiting is truly one of the most enjoyable aspects of my job because I get to know so many athletically-gifted young ladies.  As a coach, there's so much of myself that I give to my players:  my passion to help them get better every single day; my consistent work ethic to assure them that I'm committed to their game; and 110% of my time and attention to their personal lives off the court.  Yet, it always amazes me how much I also gain from my interactions with them.  My players fuel my passion for coaching, and recruiting season always reminds me of this.

While the staff and I were on the road, the team was in the gym working hard.  Strength and conditioning sessions, as well as individual workouts...always getting better.  Towards the end of the month, we hosted our 2013 Golf Scramble at Standard Country Club. Nothing but perfect weather.  The sponsors, our girls and I had a great time on the course.  The Golf Scramble is a fundraising campaign that will benefit the remodeling of our practice facility.  So a big THANK YOU to our awesome sponsors!

But the most exciting thing happening now is...PRACTICE!!  We had our 1st day of official practice two days ago, and I couldn't be happier.  All of our hard work during the offseason was displayed, but we've still got a lot to do to reach our goals.  With the new additions of Starr and Emmonnie, these first few weeks will help strengthen chemistry on the team as the girls get comfortable with each other on the court.  Our first game is about a month away- November 5 exhibition game against Pikeville at the KFC YUM! Center.  We hope to see you, your family, and friends there to help us kick off a new season.  And if you can't wait to see some Cards basketball until then, check out the latest videos on YouTube channel University of Louisville Cardinals

Stay up to date on Louisville Women's Basketball news through this blog and GoCards.com.  You can follow the team on Twitter and Instagram @UofLWBB, YouTube at University of Louisville Cardinals, and Facebook at University of Louisville Women's Basketball.  You can also follow me on Twitter and Instagram @coachjeffwalz.

Jeff Walz Gives An Update on the Women's Basketball Program

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Ah, a new school year!  The University of Louisville campus is buzzing with excitement.  We ended the first two weeks of classes by winning the ESPN televised football game against EKU, 44-7.  Congratulations to Coach Strong and his team for the huge effort.  We sold out the game and kicked of the season with a bang.  Our team is currently ranked No. 7 in the AP Top 25 and we look forward to an exciting home game this weekend against Eastern Kentucky University.

 

University of Louisville Women's Basketball is off to a great start!  New beginnings, bigger goals, and focused minds for our girls.  This summer, the NCAA released a new rule allowing us to practice with our players enrolled in summer school up to two hours a week.  This puts us in a position to enhance our strengths, correct errors in our play, get stronger in the weight room, improve on our weaknesses, and build our mental focus for another NCAA tournament run.

 

At the beginning of summer, we held our Shooting and Ball Handling Camp at Cardinal Arena for girls ages 9-17.  My staff and I worked the kids hard and had an amazing time.  The kids really enjoyed themselves.  It was a great experience for me to meet them and assist them in taking their game to the next level.  I'm privileged to have a role in building sportsmanship, competition, and love for the game of future generations.  If you or your kids are interested, be sure to look out for next year's camp on www.gocards.com

 

As the summer progressed, Shoni got the opportunity to compete as a member of the USA Team in the World University Games.  The team won the gold medal over Russia in the Championship game on July 15 in Kazan, Russia.  Shoni finished the tournament averaging 4.6 points, 3.0 assists, and 12.8 minutes per game.  

 

Shortly thereafter, a few of the girls and I headed to Los Angeles for the 2013 ESPYs.  We were nominated for Biggest Upset in our game against Baylor in this past year's NCAA Sweet 16.  Being at the ESPYs was an amazing experience for us.  We met lots of fun people- athletes, sportscasters, and musicians.  My favorite was meeting LeBron James and Dwayne Wade, two-time NBA Champions.  I also really enjoyed my conversation with ESPN's Stuart Scott on parenting.  My wife and the girls will always remember the walk down the Red Carpet!

 

A new school year...nothing beats the eagerness of it.  Except the birth of my second daughter, perhaps!  My wife Lauren and I welcomed Lola Jean into the world on June 14We appreciate all of the 'congratulations' and well wishes.

 

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