Clodagh Scannell, Boston University: “It’s a new year, with a new staff, new team, and new philosophy. When the going gets tough… the tough gets going!”
Hey guys, for those of you who don’t know me, my name is Clodagh Scannell. I am currently a junior playing in NCAA D1 basketball at Boston University. Boston University is one of the top University’s in the USA. It is built on the Charles River (which is usually frozen for three months of the year!) The campus is amazing: it is two miles long but built in the city. There are 40,000 students on campus, so I am a small fish in a HUGE pond.
Being a part of BU women’s basketball is one of the greatest things that has happened to me. I am very blessed to live my dream every single day. Playing in Case Gym is such a “hype”, as my teammates would say. We get a lot of fans but I often joke with one of my teammates, Sarah Hope #13, that her family usually fills our crowed with her aunts, uncles, grandparents, and friends, as they all live around the Boston Area. They are die-hard fans of BU women’s basketball! My teammates and I have access to Case Gym at all times. The keys hang in our locker room and are regularly missing as one of us are always getting up extra shots.
I am in my third year here at BU. My freshmen year was a very successful season for our program. We were 24-6 and made it to the WNIT post-season tournament. Even though I didn’t play many minutes during my freshmen year, the experience of playing with absolute rockstars, like Chantell “Tana” Alford (currently playing in Russia) and Caitlin “Mo” Moran, was unforgettable. Having to guard Tana everyday in practice was both a pain and a pleasure. She made it clear that I had a lot of work to do to be the best at the highest level. My Sophomore year was a great year for my basketball. I worked extremely hard and earned a starting guard spot. I was really able to contribute on the scoring side and pushed both myself and my teammates everyday at practice.
My Junior year has been another great experience so far. We have a new coaching staff led by our Head Coach, Katy Steading. It has been a huge transition for some of my teammates and I. We are, once again, all “freshmen” again. The sense of familiarity is slowly building but as a junior you can imagine how tough it is. That being said, my teammates are amazing. We are very lucky to have such a united team this season. We are all such great friends. This helps so much when we are having a tough time winning games because we keep playing hard and try to be there for one another no matter what.
Being a division one student athlete is a full time job in my eyes. We have class in the morning till afternoon and then practice begins at 2:30pm everyday. We will watch film for 30 minutes then get on the court at around 3pm. Practice will go for usually 2hrs and 3o minutes. Coach Steading has a instilled her motto in us which is, “Do it right, do it light. Do it wrong, do it long.” After practice, we go to the weight room where our strength and conditioning coach, Jill Zeller (“JAYZ”), will work with us for an hour a day. Basketball is a huge part of my daily schedule. Once I step on the court, I try to put anything that is going on in the outside world on a shelf and focus on having a good practice. It is not easy: somedays are better than others. Sometimes we forget that we are still young women, growing up in the city of Boston, without our childhood friends and family around us. Different challenges in the classroom, and life, are thrown at us everyday. We have to leave all that aside and give 100% in practice. Balancing school and basketball certainly requires good time management skills. Making an assignment deadline at Boston University is just as important as showing up to practice ready to work hard. It all comes with being a Student Athlete.
I am very lucky that I have such good friends in Boston. I live with my friend Lillian, who plays on the women’s Ice Hockey team. It is really important to me that I have friends outside of the team so I experience everything Boston has to offer. Our apartment building is a 16 floor block called Stuvi. My best friends, Shannon Stoneburgh (women’s Ice Hockey), Sydney Gary (Celtics Dancer) and Sarah Lefort (women’s Ice Hockey) all live in the same apartment building as Lillian and I. So, as you can imagine it is just one giant sleepover, all the time. Whether it’s watching a movie, having a cup of tea, or reminiscing about our day, my friends are always nearby, which is awesome!
We are about to begin the second stretch of our season in the Patriot League. We have played every team once and now we will repeat the cycle again. We have come so close in so many games. I think this half of our season could be very successful! Our mission is to put two good halves together. We have a tendency to come out with fire blazing but cannot maintain that intensity and focus for the full 40-minutes. I want to be better, play better, and most importantly, do everything I can for my team to be successful. I am currently playing at the point guard position, which is a change for me. I have been known as a shooter all my life but one of my teammates, Sarah Hope, has had an unfortunate season-ending injury. Now, some of the point guard responsibility has been given over to me. As I said, even though I am somewhat out of my comfort zone, I am willing to do anything in order for our team to win.
With this blog, on The Courtside Collective, I hope to stay connected with all the young players and coaches in the Irish basketball community. I hope I can give you a sense of what it’s like to be a division one student athlete through sharing my experiences of life at BU.
Thanks for reading. Clo!
[Editor: Thanks, Clo! Check out this old school video highlights of Clodagh ballin’!]