Thursday, April 12, 2007

Star in Metro Cincinnati commits to join Lady Vols

CINCINNATI — When Amber Gray talked with Tennessee women's basketball Coach Pat Summitt on Sunday and told her, "I want to be a Lady Volunteer," a weight was lifted off the Lakota West junior's shoulders.

Instead of taking the summer and possibly next season to ponder where she wanted to play college ball, the Firebirds standout knew where she wanted to go. Gray said she "felt it deep inside" that UT was the place for her to be.

Duke and LSU — two of her other top possible choices — are making coaching changes.

That "played a big factor," Gray said.

Stability at UT

And at UT, there aren't many more stable coaching situations than Summitt's. Last week, Summitt guided the Lady Vols to their seventh national title, improving to 945-180 over 33 seasons.

"Every girls' basketball player wants to play for Tennessee and Coach Summitt," Gray said.

The 6-foot-1 guard/forward averaged 20.9 points and 8.5 rebounds her junior season.

Now Gray can concentrate on her senior season without the weight of a college decision lingering.

"I can have fun without worrying about which coach is watching me," Gray said.

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