Florida Women’s Basketball head coach Cameron Newbauer addressed the media today in his first press conference of the new season.
Coming off an 8-23 season, Newbauer is looking to turn things around this season. With only having a number of returning players last year, it was a young team that was taking on the court last season. But things started to click within the last couple of games in which they overcame two big SEC teams. One of those teams was Ole Miss, who was ranked no. 12 at the time.
“That was the challenge last year, we only had two players return with experience,” said Coach Newbauer. “This year we have seven returning players with experience. I think we have a group that is eager and excited to compete come November.”
It’s not easy to compete in the SEC. Especially when most of the teams you face are usually ranked in the top 25. Being that most of the team is returning, Coach Cam is confident they’ll be able to compete in the conference this year.
“We talk expectations every day with how hard we are going to go this year and be the best we can,” said Cam. “The energy in the gym, communication, the togetherness, it just all feels different. We’re really excited about starting practice and we have players that want to contribute like they never have before and just compete every day.”
Along with the seven players returning, there are four new faces coming into this Gator team. Faith Dut, Nina Rickards, Lavender Briggs and Brylee Bartram are the four ladies that make up the 2019 class. They bring a lot of hype with them.
Dut is a six-foot-four post player with international experience. Rickards is a hard-nosed guard with a championship pedigree. Briggs is a polished player with a knack for scoring. Bartram is a razor-sharp guard with a shooter’s mentality. All are focused on writing a new chapter in the book of Florida women’s basketball.
“I think all of the new faces stepping on to the court have already made an impact in our program,” said the Florida coach. “They have raised the bar in workouts, weight room, they are all such great competitors and will find a way to contribute on the court.”
Coach Newbauer also touched on not feeling pressure going into this season despite how last season turned out. He focused on the culture of winning and the importance of togetherness. Going into year three of Newbauer at Florida, all of the players that fill up his roster are players that he recruited.
“We are going to focus on the expectation of being our best day by day and be able to compete. No pressure.”
The Gator Women’s Basketball team will kick off their season November 5th against Grambling State.