andy landers, georgia women's basketball, joni crenshaw, sec, Sports -

Joni Crenshaw Becomes 2nd Georgia Women’s Basketball Coach in School’s History

andy landers, georgia women's basketball, joni crenshaw, sec, Sports -

Joni Crenshaw Becomes 2nd Georgia Women’s Basketball Coach in School’s History

552c787877116.imageJoni Henderson became only the second head coach in Georgia women’s basketball history, replacing Andy Landers, who led the program to prominence in his 36 years.

Henderson, who was recruited by Landers but signed with Alabama, joined the Bulldog staff as an assistant four years ago. She spoke of her opportunity to SB Nation’s Swish Appeal.

Question: What were your feelings when you were told you would be the next head coach at Georgia?

Crenshaw: “Pretty overwhelmed. I was speechless. . .Your head starts spinning because you know the process goes pretty quickly. I started thinking I need to call my mom, my dad, my fiancé (USC assistant Darius Taylor), I need to have a team meeting. So immediately, you’re listening to them, but you’re also thinking about all these other things that you’ve kind of had in your mind, but you don’t really want to take yourself there until you know for sure.”

Q: How did the players react when they found out you were going to be their next coach?

JC: “It was excitement all the way around, and honestly that’s a great feeling to know that you have their support. They were so good during the transition period, just doing everything we asked of them and really moving business as normal in terms of academics, on the floor workouts, and in the weight room. When you see their reaction it just makes it all the more worthwhile.”

Q: How do you feel learning under (Andy Landers’) stewardship and knowing that he is a big believer in you?

JC: “I have had an opportunity that a lot of people don’t get, and I recognize that. I tried every day working with him and for him not to let him down. My biggest thing is, I don’t want to disappoint. I have been like that since I was a kid, I never wanted to disappoint my parents, my teachers, my friends. . . That really drives me and fuels me.”

Q: How do you feel that you are going to put your stamp on Georgia women’s basketball?

JC: “I think I’m a no-nonsense person, I think I am a player’s coach and that they can relate to me, I think I am a role-model for them. The first thing you have to have is credibility and I’ve played in the SEC at a high level, I’ve been in this conference for several years and I’ve coached for 13. So I have the credibility, but after that you have to earn their trust. Once you do those two things, the rest kind of falls in place.”

Q: Have you given any thought to the fact that you are now only the second full-time head coach in the school’s history? What does that mean to you?

JC: “Yes and no. Obviously I know that, and there’s times where I’m like, ‘wow,’ but there’s times where it doesn’t faze me. I have been going on autopilot and adrenaline since the announcement. I was completely aware of it before though, realizing whoever was named would be only the second full-time coach in Georgia history, it’s incredible. I think it really just speaks to what Coach Landers has done not only in the community, but for Georgia as well.”

Q: What is your vision for Georgia women’s basketball going forward?

JC: “To put a good product on the floor. To have kids who represent themselves, their families, this university, and their communities. To have first-class players not only on the floor, but in the classroom and the community. We want to be visible and accessible to the public and our fans. We want to play hard.”


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