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Archive for Wednesday, June 23, 2004

New coach enjoying ‘really good summer’

June 23, 2004

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First-year Kansas University women's basketball coach Bonnie Henrickson would be the first to admit that her first two months in Lawrence have blown by at an almost tornado-like pace.

Fortunately for Henrickson and her staff, things have calmed down a bit in recent weeks. Now their first summer at KU feels a bit less tedious and a little more businesslike.

"All of our real estate decisions and processes are done," said Henrickson, the former Virginia Tech coach who was introduced as Marian Washington's successor March 29. "We've all sold (in Virginia) and bought (in Lawrence). None of us are in our houses yet, but we're a lot closer than we were two months ago, so that feels better.

"In the office, every university runs things different, and that transition has been pretty smooth. It's been a really good summer."

Although packing and moving are afterthoughts, Henrickson and assistant coaches Karen Lange, Katie O'Connor and Kyra Elzy haven't been relaxing or taking any vacation time.

The staff wrapped up its first KU camp last weekend and has been hitting the recruiting trail hard core to establish as many contacts as possible throughout the Midwest. That's the first major step in rebuilding a program coming off four straight losing seasons.

Monday was the first day coaches were allowed to call prospects for the 2005 class, and Henrickson said her staff was ready.

"We've certainly worked hard to get those kids to call us, because that's legal -- through e-mail and letters and those things," Henrickson said. "We've worked hard, been on the phone and been cultivating relationships with summer coaches and high school coaches.

"We go out (recruiting) -- the first day is July 8 -- and I'll be out the whole time from July 8 through the 31st."

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