Kamiko Williams closer to comeback

Kamiko Williams is playing the role of the scout team point guard in "limited and controlled" situations. Go inside with Inside Tennessee to get the latest Lady Vol news and videos.

Kamiko Williams, who had ACL surgery last July, has made remarkable progress with her rehab and while a return date remains an unknown as of now, the junior guard is able to participate in some practice drills, including playing the role of scout team point guard as long as she follows Jenny Moshak's orders.

Moshak, the team's chief of sports medicine, has instructed Williams to restrict her participation to "limited and controlled" drills. Williams seems to be heeding that advice but she also headed to the rim a few times Friday, explaining that she knows her teammates have sufficient body control to avoid collisions. She also keeps moving after getting to the paint and steers well clear of any rebounding situations.

Anyone who walked into the gym and didn't know Williams had torn her left ACL last July in a summer league game would never realize she was just a little over four months out of surgery. She has no visible swelling and her quad and calf muscles are as developed on her surgery leg as the other leg.

"I feel like if I control myself everything else around me will be controlled," Williams said Friday after practice at Pratt Pavilion. "They all know how to play basketball."

That doesn't stop Moshak from keeping a close eye on Williams while she is on the court.

Kamiko Williams lofts a shot Friday.

Williams is not going top speed, though she will show quick bursts, but she appears to be getting closer to that measuring stick. She already shows the ability to make cuts and change direction.

For Williams it's a joy to be back on the court and it also leaves her wanting more.

"I'm excited, but it's kind of frustrating at the same time because I know I can do this but I don't feel the same, but I kind of do," Williams said. "She said I'll come back with time."

Williams' activities on the court are evaluated in terms of how she feels and how her knee reacts. That guides what she is allowed to do or not do at the next session. She also remains in a regimen of rehab as part of her recovery.

"As far as stuff that I do (in live situations), it's stuff that we worked on (in solitary drills) previously," Williams said. "Defense, shooting. Stuff that we have worked on that I am comfortable with, we do.

"I am taking it a day at a time and see how my knee feels. If my knee doesn't hurt, I go out there. If it hurts, I need treatment."

Williams has turned into a coach on the sideline. She shouts out defensive instructions during games, especially reminding players to get their hands up.

Kamiko Williams and Pat Summitt at practice Friday.

"Coach Mickie (DeMoss) asked me before the season started to do it," Williams said. "I said, ‘Yeah, I am not going to just sit on the bench and be quiet.' It keeps me involved in the game."

Williams is also seeing the game now from a coach's perspective.

"The coaches are right, for starters," Williams said with a laugh. "I have learned a lot about our team. "Before I would be like, ‘What? I'm confused. I don't know what you talking about.' I was playing so I didn't see (the mistakes). But now I see that we have to work on certain things – defense and transition, one-on-one defense.

"Just watching I am like, ‘Well, I know I shouldn't be doing this when I get back. I shouldn't be doing that.' I am learning and I am trying to help at the same time."

The Lady Vols will return to practice Saturday to finish preparations for Texas. The game against the Longhorns will tip off at 2 p.m. Eastern on Sunday. Fox SportSouth has the telecast.

VIDEO COVERAGE

Pat Summitt

Kamiko Williams

Shekinna Stricklen

Cierra Burdick

Friday practice clips


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