CORTNEE WALTON BACK IN LOUISVILLE
Jeff Walz and Louisville women's basketball brought #13 home.
Cortnee Walton returns to Louisville after spending three years working in recruiting operations down at Georgia Tech. Here at Louisville, she'll be Director of Player Development and Alumni Relations. You can expect she'll work closely with Adrienne Johnson, who is now the assistant AD for women's basketball, but had tons of experience doing what Cortnee will do in her 17 years (so far) at UofL.
I did a "double take" when I realized "A.J." has been at Louisville for 17 years. I'm firmly convinced she must have started working for the Cards when she was 13.
|(My favorite picture of two of my favorite players in Louisville WBB history A-Tayy and Cort )|
Cortnee,was a sideline reporter for the ACC Network in basketball and soccer and did radio after graduation and before she went to Georgia Tech. Oh, yeah...did I mention she played a little hoops before that here at Louisville?
All in all, she played in 139 games for the Cards and started in all 34 in the 2015-16 season. She was the only Card to start in all 34 games. She and Myshia Hines-Allen were a pretty dynamic front-line for Walz, That team got knocked out of the NCAA Tournament in the second round by DePaul. And, in 2016-17, she started 30 of the 31 UofL WBB games on a team that made it to the third round of the NCAA Tournament before losing to Baylor at Baylor.
She was also a freshman on the 2012-13 squad that upset Baylor... and Brit Griner.. at Baylor in the third round of the NCAA Tournament and made it to the finals...but they lost to UConn. That squad had Asia Taylor, Monique Reid, both Schimmels, Tia Gibbs, Shawnta Dyer and Sherrone Vails. ...and that's not even half the roster.
I think you can safely say that Cortnee has seen some pretty memorable women's basketball through the years.
She has the personality, intelligence and skills to do well in her new job at UofL WBB. She'll have no trouble reaching out to alumni and talking with them. Director of Player Development will suit her skills well, too. She's seen a lot in her time around college basketball, is well equipped to handle just about any situation and will give you her ear and time to talk and listen and help anyway she can.
I remember seeing her at the ACC women's tournament in reensboro when she was in her first year at Georgia Tech. We talked for awhile, exchanged a few memories and had some laughs but what I remember most is her plaintively looking at me and telling me that it was her dream to get back to Louisville and work for the Cardinals WBB program someday.
Dreams do come true. If you believe it, you can acheive it.
There are a few new faces in the WBB staffing these days in addition to Cortnee. Shay Robinson is an associate coach now. Macey Ford takes over as director of operations. Denny Crum Hall is being built on Floyd Street across from the Planet Fitness Kueber Center (I'll probably refer to it at the "little YUM" until I go senile, though,) People move onward and upward in successful organizational structures and UofL WBB is a prime example.
Yes, the days of dropping by Sam Purcell's office and leaving him a few ink pens that no longer work or had any ink in them are gone. (I'll explain that prank someday to you readers)
And, I'll be wandering down to the facility before too long to see Walz and company (if new WBB SID Matt Paras can make it happen), No more teasing Beth Burns about bombing out twice at San Diego St. or pestering Kate Tucker about getting basketballs autographed. It's a tribute to Walz that his staff is in high demand. When the people you've trained in your system advance in their careers, it means they've had great teachers. Come home, Cortnee and learn from Jeff and Steph.
Things change. And in the words of the old REO Speedwagon song...you gotta roll with the changes. This a good change and will benefit both Cortmee and UofL women's basketball.
LINK to song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jeHkaSH0Xw8