Editor's Note: Coming off the program's first Sweet 16 appearance in the NCAA Tournament, there is a lot of anticipation for the 2011-12 women's basketball season as well as the expectations it holds. Every Tuesday throughout the summer, Assistant Director of Athletics Communications Jill Wunrow will sit down with one player to talk about the expectations they have for themselves for the upcoming season and what fans can expect to see from them individually.
Sophomore, Breannah Ranger (Skokie, Ill.), 6'2", F
Why did you make the decision to redshirt last season?
"I decided to redshirt last season because it was an opportunity for me to develop my game more. It not only would help me physically but my mental transaction too. I also had a little experience on the court my freshman year so I know how fast the game was played and the things I needed to work on better when I was on the court. Redshirting has really helped me improve."
How valuable do you think redshirting a season was for you? What did you learn by watching your teammates?
"Redshirting was very valuable to me because I always thought different about it until I actually did it. In the end I'm happy I made the decision I did. What I learned by watching my teammates is working hard no matter what. When there was a loss ball, my teammates were on the floor fighting for it every possession. They never give up on anything regardless of the score and have a lot of heart. It was fun watching their energy during a game both on and off the court."
What are you most looking forward to during the 2011-12 season?
"The thing I am most looking forward to is getting on that court with my teammates and playing games. I'm very anxious for the season to start and doing what we did last year."
What have you been working/focusing on during the off-season in order to improve your game for the upcoming season?
"I have been working on being strong under the basket. Last year I needed to work on free throws so this off season every time after we got done playing pick up Julie would take me to the free throw line and I would have to make five in a row before I could leave. I have also been working on learning a different position, getting up and down the court faster. I have also been working on a couple of defensive things with my teammates that have been helping me out."
Being from out of state, what has been the most challenging thing for you since you've moved away from home to Green Bay?
"The most challenging thing for me was being away from home my family, who I'm very close with as well as my friends."
Having worked with and against Julie in the post position, what have you learned from her that you plan to use in your own game?
"I don't even know where to start with Julie, she is a beast of a player. I have picked up a couple of things from her as far as rebounding goes. She can not only guard the post but move her feet fast enough to defend against a guard. Her shots are not always close to the basket but she can step outside if she wants to. As the season progresses I hope I can learn a lot more things from Julie to use in my own game."
You are probably the shyest player on the team, but have the biggest smile. What are some observations you've made of your teammates as far as their personalities and trying to be funny, etc.?
"Yea I do have a big smile. Katie always says that I'm cheesin'. I think Katie has to be one of the funniest players on our team. Once she gets rolling I can't stop laughing. We have a lot of funny girls on our team that always provide a good laugh. I'll give some props to Steph , Hannah and Julie who always have me laughing real hard. Julie probably doesn't know it but you have to catch her off guard or just watch and you will catch something funny.
Other than basketball, what have you been doing in your spare time during the summer?
"I know this sounds bad but I am probably one of the biggest sleepers on the team. I LOVE to sleep in my spare time. If I can't sleep I usually find something that interests me whether it's going for a walk, playing games or watching movies but any chance I get I sleep."