Smith to start new chapter in WNBA


On Monday night, senior guard Andrea Smith received a call from her brother.

Texts and more phone calls soon followed.

They were all to congratulate Smith on getting drafted to the WNBA as the 35th overall pick to the Connecticut Sun.

But her brother’s congratulatory phone call was news to Smith.

“To be honest, I didn’t get to watch it because the channel was blacked out,” Smith said in a press release.

While Smith may not have gotten to hear the words “With the 35th pick in 2013 WNBA Draft…” the thought of a WNBA team selecting her left her without words.

“I’m really excited and humbled by the opportunity, but I’ll still have to work to make the final roster,” Smith said. “So there will be plenty of hours left to put in at the gym, but I’m just kind of speechless right now.”

While getting drafted to professional team in any sport can be daunting to an athlete and can even go to his or her head, USF fans have seen that Smith is humble and a hard worker.

Last season, Smith led the team with points per game with 16.3, was named Big East Player of the Week twice and was selected first-team on the All-Big East Team.

This past season, Smith also racked up 1,048 career points (15th in school history) while leading the Bulls with 538 total points on the season (seventh in school history), all
while appearing in every single game after recovering from a torn ACL, just a year before putting her on the bench for all of the 2011-12 season.

With Smith making history on the court, her selection in the draft is historic for USF as well.

Former USF player Jessica Dickson was selected in the second round of the WNBA draft in 2007, making Smith the second player in USF history to be drafted.

Now as a name in the record books for the Bulls and the Big East, Smith enters a new level of basketball with some familiar faces.

The Sun has six former UConn players on its roster, so landing in Connecticut for Smith isn’t such a bad spot.

“We’ll have a few Big East alumni on that team I’ll be familiar with,” Smith said. “So that will be a nice starting point for me.”

Smith’s new team is also coached by Anne Donovan, the former coach of Big East competitor Seton Hall.

Making the final roster is still on the checklist for Smith before claiming an official spot come preseason, which starts May 11.

After the Bulls found out they were seeded No. 10 in the NCAA tournament less than a month ago, Smith added a new chapter to her memories at USF, and one of her last as a Bull.

Now in a new league, in a new city with a new team, Smith has the opportunity to open up a whole new chapter of her life in the WNBA.