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Thursday, March 6, 2014

Thursday Cardinal Couple -- Shoni or Angel...who ya got?


- Shoni or Angel: Who's had the most impact on the program?

I spent a little time talking with a huge UofL WBB fan yesterday...someone who's followed the team even longer than I have. I respect the words that are offered by this wise counsel (who DID prefer to remain anonymous) and we had a great dialouge on Louisville WBB and what it has become.

This friend left me with this intriguing question.

"Angel or Shoni. Who's had the most impact on the program?"

I thought about the challenge for some time. Each has been so very special in their own way. I honestly couldn't decide for quite awhile. My dear spouse Sonja responded immediately.

"Angel. The leading record holder in almost everything with UofL WBB and the best player in the WNBA. Jersey retired in the YUM!"

I countered with...Shoni. Draws thousands of fans from across the nation to games home or away and has set a few records herself. A three-point, no-look, battle-to-the-end warrior. A phrase invented about her.
"You got Schimmeled."

Both have made NCAA Championship games. Both are one-name, first-name instant recognition.

I'm not so sure where I'm leaning, though.

Obviously there are many others who have built this program. This, about these two.

Tell me what you think in the comments section. Angel or Shoni. Who ya got?

*          *          *          *          *        *         *        *          *          *

We are having a little contest here about the AAC women's tournament that begins Friday night. Pick the nine games involved with it. Give us a total # of points scored in the final.

If you win, you get a CARDINAL COUPLE T-Shirt. On us.

Hey...if you're going to try and pick all the NCAA games and win a bazillion $$$ might as well warm up with nine, right?  

You can enter either in the comments section or by e-mail to:

Sonja offers her selections:

Game 1. Cincinnati over UCF. No reason. Either is one-and done
Game 2. Houston downs Memphis. There's always an upset, right?
Game 3. Rutgers advances over the SMU. C Viv has talent aplenty.
Game 4. UConn. Coach vs. former player. Another teaching lesson.
Game 5. Louisville. Cards are trying to secure a #1 seed.
Game 6. USF. Bulls gore the Owls in a rough one to watch.
Game 7. UConn. They just recently beat Rutgers by 40+. Advance
Game 8. Louisville . USF will hang around a long time.
Game 9. UConn. Sorry, Shoni...You don't beat them yet.
Points: 112

Join us in the fun, won't you?



  1. game 1 - cin
    game 2 - mem
    game 3 - rutg
    game 4 - conn
    game 5 - lou
    game 6 - usf
    game 7 - conn
    game 8 - usf
    game 9 - conn

    points 144

    bulls fan #13
    punta gorda, fl

  2. Cincy-Memphis-SMU-UConn-UL-Temple-UConn-UL-UConn
    Hi, Paulie! I wear a large.
    Terri the flirt. LOVE the site! How have you been?

  3. #35. Angel McCoughtry. Any successes that Shoni has enjoyed were brought about by the skinny kid from Baltimore who put a team with a new coach on her back and willed them to the 2009 title game. Schimmel types will come and go. Angel put the Cards in the spotlight.

  4. Have to agree....Angel, She got us there and everything else is gravy!

  5. Much as I love watching Shoni play, I'll also vote for Angel. She, Candyce Bingham and others on her teams moved a "good but under the radar" program into the national spotlight for the first time. Would Walz have been able to successfully recruit Shoni without the credibility that Angel helped build?

    That said, Shoni's importance transcends basketball because of the Native American connection.and the national exposure that has earned.

    And one more Shoni thought. I'm a golfer. I never used to miss Tiger Woods on TV because, in his prime, every time he teed it up I might see something spectacular, something I'd never seen before. I have felt that way about Shoni over the last four years.

  6. Yes, I agree that Angel gets everything started. But, let's not forget that Angel also benefited from a coach that helped her fulfill her potential. Along with that you have a coach that partnered with the marketing department to excite and grow the fan base. And, Mo Reid brings a local vibe. Angel was the catalyst that caused the reaction. Shoni is great but without Angel putting us in the spotlight, Shoni is playing somewhere else.

  7. Angel
    It takes enormous energy to start a train rolling but it still needs huge amounts of energy to keep it going then acelerate. That cause of the acceleration would be Shoni.

    With Jeff as the conductor we are looking forward to seeing who will be the next person to continue the momentum built by those who came before.

  8. Angel is the pioneer, she is great. But Shoni didn't go to Lousiville because of Angel. But its obvious that Angel helped put the program on the map. Shoni brings a big crowed ranging from Oregon to NewYork from Texas to Alaska, Shoni and Jude brought these people from all over, no one else will ever do this again, these two opened up a lot in every way possible to make you believe. I mean besides winning a championship, the Baylor win will always be in my heart, I've never cried over a game ever! Shoni and Jude brought a record crowed that no one else has done and who knows if the record will ever be broken. A documentary was being made on Shoni before she entered the college ranks. Shoni comes from a very small community here in Eastern Oregon, she learned her game here on the streets of the Projects of Mission Oregon aka Umatilla Rez where the Elk come down in the winter to feed, the salmon are in our back yard lol They write and sing songs about Shoni. SHONI!!!!! hahahaha ---Umatilla23

  9. Stats dont lie.Angel not only lead the team in scoring and steals,but entire conference as well.Angel was and is a player that does all the intangibles.She plays both ends of the court.She has lead the Wnba in scoring 2 years and took her team to 2 championships.I love Shoni,but strongly doubt she will do that.

  10. I don't think that there is any question that Angel was and is the stronger force on the court. As others have said, the numbers don't lie. To me she's still the best baller that has come into the women's program and she put Louisville on the map initially. Her WNBA performance has been strong and will most likely also outshine Shoni's from an alumnus standpoint.

    Shoni with all of her pre-Louisville "Off The Rez" publicity, her "high risk, high reward" balling style and the Shimmel family tribal outreach of the last several years brings something other than basketball to the party. The current political / cultural climate has made Shoni & the Shimmel family story a kind of "made for media event". The Sports Illustrated story is plenty of proof of that. I don't see a downside to it. Certainly good for all native americans, our program and WCBB generally. It also assured us that our program wasn't a "one hit wonder" with Angel. We've got a real program now.

    For those of us that were raised in the Western US we were already familiar with Rez Ball and Shoni is far from the most skilled practitioner of the style. I grew up in Montana and we played against some native kids that were real ballers. I also remember watching Willie Weeks go for 38 points one night at Montana State. He was also an academic all american. Unfortunately he died at only 55 years old, which is more common than it should be out on the Rez.

    Any positive role models that can be put out there for natives are important, particularly given how media and the web works now. I see Angel as a pure baller and Shoni as a great baller with an important cultural message that pretty much everyone can profit from. I guess from that perspective I'd have to give the nod to Shoni as far as the national image of the program. It will be interesting to see if native americans continue to be fans of the program after Shoni and Jude have moved on in their lives.


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