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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Coach Walz on the radio


( JENNY O' BRYAN is our regular columnist on Wednesdays and despite suffering from the seasonal allergies that seem to get to most of us here in the Derby City...pulls off the double-header of print for today and radio last night in fine fashion. As she mentions, we pre-recorded the radio show Tuesday evening so that Derby morning the three of us would be free to pursue Derby Day activities. For me, it's recovering from Oaks Day in time to attend a Derby Party. Jeff will load up his Jeep with the staff chimps and Bill the Goat and cruise the Green Lot at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium handing out banana daiquiris and pictures of Yul Brenner. Jenny was vague on her plans...we suspect she'll be on Millionaire's Row at Churchill stalking Jeff Walz and Julie Hermann, dressed as a Texas oil tycoon. Maybe accompanied by Kim Mulkey. Here's Jenny...) 

Matt Andrews also calls Bats games on the radio.
Without AJ.
Matt Andrews hosted Coach Jeff Walz on the radio last evening for a final wrap-up of the season.  On at a time that I am rarely able to hear, I happened to be en route and in the car and listened in for the first half of the show. 

Paulie, Jeff McAdams and I were meeting up at Crescent Hill Radio to do a recording of Cardinal Couple Radio to be aired on Saturday.  While Paulie and I are big, big fans of horse racing in general, and the Kentucky Derby specifically, we both intend to be otherwise occupied on Saturday.  Jeff, on the other hand admittedly knows little, and cares even less about horse racing.  While Jeffy could have done the radio show solo on Saturday, who trusts a guy who grew up in Louisville and does not like the horses?  Well, Paulie thought better of it, so we all gathered last night.   

As a result of that Tuesday evening outing, I heard a bit of the show.  Most of the show was callers congratulating Coach Walz on the success of the team and the post season run, there were several points that were touched on that readers here have already touched on, asked or emailed about. 

Coach Walz signals the chefs in
Geno's Restaurant he needs bread.
First off, Coach Walz did confirm there are 16 players on the roster for next season.  Division 1Women’s Basketball allows for 15 scholarship players, so he did confirm one player (who he did not name) would not be on scholarship.  That being the case, he expects if all are healthy and able to play, a deep bench with plenty of competition for playing time.  

Walz specifically mentioned the incoming recruiting class of Emmonie Henderson, Janelle Cannon and Starr Breedlove.  With Henderson he expects an immediate impact from an explosive and powerful player.  Henderson can play the post and shoot the 3 ball.  With the addition of Cannon and Breedlove it builds an even greater depth in the backcourt with these two able to play either guard position. 

When asked about the growth potential of players during the off-season, he specifically mentioned Bria Smith, Megan Deines and Cortnee Walton.  Of course, all the players can, and I imagine are expected to improve during the offseason, he mentioned some specifics here in regards to these players.   Smith will be working on her midrange shot, pull up jumper.  Walz mentioned how strong Deines started her freshman campaign but then really fatigued midseason.  He expects to see a stronger Deines with greater endurance as well as growth of Walton as she has a season under her belt. 

A Tayy and Cortnee lookin' like runway models!
When asked about injuries he suggested Asia Taylor is practicing (not with coaches as that is not allowed at this point) and doing well.   Tia Gibbs continues her rehab and work with strength and conditioning and states she feels better than she has in two years.  This is all good news for Cardinal fans!  Some have been concerned about a Smith tweet about an MRI.  Walz confirmed she did have an MRI on her knee and has a few things she needs to work on to strengthen and taker care of.

No alarms sound for me with the Smith news.  As a season ticket holder who sits behind the bench, Smith is often coming out, getting a little work on the knee, and going back in.  I am no athletic trainer, and certainly no athlete, but I assume this is just the cumulative effect of the life of an elite athlete.  With nearly year round play in high school and AAU season, then on to Division 1 athletics, the toll has to be felt.    Rehab well and take care Bria! 

An exclusive CARDINAL COUPLE photo of Bria's name!
Speaking of Bria, Walz indicated that Bria will be headed to Colorado Springs in mid May for USA Women’s Basketball World University Games tryouts.    We will share more here when we know it.  This was just a brief mention last night, so we look forward to sharing more news when we know it. 

I missed the second half of the show, so, that is all of a recap that I have for you.  Coach Walz puts this season to bed with this interview.   Keep yourself logged in here though as we follow the recruiting trail during this off-season of Louisville Basketball.   It should be a fun one! 


Jenny likes Orb. She also likes turning left
in the right lane... 
For the Derby enthusiasts, my pick for the Roses this year is Orb.  While I mostly dabble in trying to handicap a race on a good day, handicapping the Derby race is well beyond the scope of anything I can pretend to know. 

Orb seems to have the pedigree for the distance, so they say.  I’ll put Goldencents in any exotics for the race.  With Rick Pitino having some ownership in this horse, and the year Pitino has had, it’d be foolish to not include him.  Now, if Tom Jurich owned the horse, I’d bet it to win.  Everything that man touches turns to gold.  Just have to wonder if ‘ole TJ has laid his golden hand on Goldencents.  

-Jenny O'Bryan

( We'll have Sonja and my picks for the Oaks major races in Friday's column and our Derby selections in Saturday's column. You can skip right over my picks and go with Sonja's. She's been the "hot" one the last couple of years. I will warn you, though, that I was 11 for 11 Saturday night. Or, as they say in horse racing terminology...early speed and then usually fades and isn't a factor.)




  1. Is there an archive available for Coach Walz's radio interview?

  2. I have tweeted at Matt Andrews and asked him. Will let you know what I find out.


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