Briahanna Jackson quietly returns to college basketball

By on November 13, 2015

By Sam Draut–

Head coach Jeff Walz was quick to say transfer Briahanna Jackson wasn’t a secret, but it’s hard not to think “mum” wasn’t the word on the former Conference USA Freshman of the Year who once scored 21 points against Louisville while playing for Central Florida.

Regardless of who did or didn’t know about Jackson transition to Louisville, the guard’s reappearance in college basketball will aid scoring and backcourt.

“It is refreshing when someone doesn’t put everything up on social media,” Walz said. “It’s kind of exhausting, but this was a kid who said she was excited to come to school.”

The 5-foot-6 guard quietly contacted Louisville a year and a half ago and has been practicing with the Cardinals ever since.

“It’s not a secret,” Walz said. “She just wants to play ball and show everyone how well she plays on the basketball court, and she’s not concerned about being in social media.”

While Jackson may not have much of a presence on social media, the junior’s ability to score grabs the attention of anyone in attendance.

As a sophomore in 2013-14, Jackson average 17.8 points per game, had two 30-point games and finished with 28 points against top-rated UConn.

“Brianna Jackson is one our crowd and fans are going to enjoy seeing play. Her athleticism and her ability to get to the rim, to defend—it’s going to be exciting,” Walz said. “She will be able to bring a different dimension to our team that we really haven’t had in the past year or two. We’re really looking forward to having her step out and play.”

Along with her scoring prowess, Jackson can rebound and defend. She averaged 4.8 rebounds and 3.1 steals in her final season at UCF.

“She’s going to make an immediate impact,” Walz said. “At 5-foot-6, I would expect her to be one of our top two or three rebounders. She has an unbelievable knack for going to get the ball with a great pull-up jump shot. She gets to the rim. She can shoot the three.”

Whereas she was a lone scorer for much of her first two seasons at the collegiate level, Jackson worked with Walz on finding open teammates and taking quality shots.

“It’s not about just getting 20 (points). If I take 20 shots, I should get 20 points. Now it’s about getting 20 while taking 10-12 shots, and then get to the free throw line 6 to 8 times,” Walz said. “That’s the challenge I’ve been putting in front of her.”

Playing alongside of five freshmen, Jackson will use her experience to carry the young Cardinal roster early in the season.

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