Barncastle: A Legacy Bigger Than Basketball

Texas Tech senior Jordan Barncastle will play her final game as a Lady Raider tonight inside the United Spirit Arena, but she wants to be remembered for more than just basketball.

At the end of a player's collegiate career the success of that career is judged by what they did for 40 minutes on a 94-foot stage for four years night in and night out.

The numbers they compiled, the records broken, the teams they helped lead their squad to beat.

Those are the things that are usually remembered first, but rarely is a player first remembered for their impact on a city, a town, or a community.

When Texas Tech senior Jordan Barncastle takes the stage that she has called home court for the past four years, the United Spirit Arena, for the last time on Wednesday night, she wants to be remembered for the type of player she was as a Lady Raider, but more importantly the imprint she has left on the community in her time donning the red and black.

"It's been incredible," Barncastle said "When you come in, you don't necessarily think of that aspect of what you do here and how many lives you're going to touch. It starts on the basketball floor and having people look up to you there.  Then being able to reach out to people and just using this as kind of motive and kind of a pathway to get to know people and form relationships and just touch as many people as possible. I know that I've had so many people that've affected my life on down the road in a lot of years, there's people that I'll never forget that I've come to know through basketball, and I hope I've had that reverse affect on people too."

Barncastle's affect on the community has not gone unrecognized, this past season being named one of the 10 2012 Winter Chick-fil-A Community of Champions by the Big 12 Conference.

The Martin's Mill native has been heavily involved in the Ronald McDonald House, Susan G. Komen Foundation, UMC Children's Hospital, Covenant Children's Hospital and the Salvation Army in her time at Tech.

Along with being involved in the community the classroom has not been a place for Barncastle to take a break as she is pursuing a degree in biology and plans to attend medical school to pursue a doctorate in sports medicine. The senior has been twice named First-Team All-Academic Big 12 for maintaining a GPA of 3.20 or better.

Barncastle has been able to maintain the grades, the community work and her performance on the court steadily during the past four seasons and that is something Tech head coach Kristy Curry admires.

"What you want your little girl to grow up and be like in every regard," Curry said about Barncastle. "I think that's one of the greatest compliments that you can give someone, is that you want your little girl to grow up like Jordan. She really walks the walk everyday, and gives you everything she's got, classroom, court, community, never asks why. She's a real coaches kid, you can tell, which is really neat.

"Just has a lot of respect for family, and people and what's life about everyday."

Putting her work in the classroom and the community aside, Barncastle didn't put up bad numbers on the court either, and the memorable moments were many.

Many people will remember Barncastle as being the player that was on the receiving end of the forearm of Baylor's Brittney Griner in 2010.

Fans will then also remember how only a year later the No. 1 Lady Bears rolled into Lubbock undefeated and watched as the final buzzer sounded and the fans in pink stormed the court following the upset win against then-No.1 Baylor inside the United Spirit Arena.

Topping it all off was making it back to the NCAA Tournament in 2011 ending a five-year absence from the tourney.

These and many more moments were all moments that Barncastle said she will never forget along with all of the big shots she has taken and seen teammates take during her time as a Lady Raider.

Getting this program from where it was when she came in 2008, to where it is now in 2012, being ranked as high as No. 10 in the Associated Press Poll this season, has been an amazing transformation and Barncastle said she is happy with the state of the Tech women's basketball program as she writes the last chapter of her career.

"Yeah, like you said it's definitely improved since I've come here, and I think that's the ultimate goal is to leave a better person and leave the program in a better state, which I think that we've done, obviously," she said. "If you're not undefeated, then you're not completely happy with how things have gone. Other things you might have liked to change, but I think ultimately it's been an awesome experience and something that'll change me forever."

With all she has accomplished on and off the court in her time as a Lady Raider, Barncastle will be honored along with Kierra Mallard on Wednesday before the game against Oklahoma, as it is senior night.

Along with the fans that will be in attendance, Barncastle's family will be there as well including her high school head coach – her father Doug Barncastle.

"It's awesome, I mean family is so, so important to me and I've missed that," Barncastle said. "It's been so good having my mom come all the time and kind of bring home with her here, keep me on that level, kind of keep me sane. With my dad's career field he doesn't get to come up as often as she does, but it'll be so great to have them all here and my sister and my brother-in-law and everybody.

"Just an awesome experience, and definite high to go out on."

Barncastle said her father will not be able to stay for the game, because he will have to fly to Austin the same night to get his team ready to face Kerens in the State 1A Division 1 Semifinal game. Barncastle won two state titles with her team and was named MVP of both of her state championship games while being coach by her father.

Looking back now to that time and as far as she has come in her time at Tech from playing her first game as Lady Raider against Idaho to now putting the finishing touches on her legacy, Barncastle said it's almost surreal that it is all wrapping up now right before her eyes.

"It is people tell you all the time, time flies and how you'll blink and it'll be over, and you kind of laugh or you don't really take that to heart until it's times like these and you think back," she said. "Man I can't believe it's been four years, you know it's been four awesome years and ups and downs and things I'll remember forever."

When solidifying her legacy as a member of the women's basketball team the scoring is one part of it and the community work and school work all play a part as well.

But when people look back at the No.1 jersey for the Lady Raiders, Barncastle said she wants people to remember her for more than the numbers she put up, but the effort she gave every night no matter what.

"All around good person and hard worker," she said. "No matter if I have zero points or 30 points, I want people to know that I'm working hard for them. I want to leave that as my legacy in knowing that I'm the kind of player that people come to watch."

After the final time she takes the court as a Lady Raider, whenever that may be this season, it will be the final time that the senior will play the game of basketball on a competitive level.  

Barncastle said she is looking to make her mark on a new field and start touching the community in a new way with her medical career.

But for the last image of her that she wants people to remember is she with Texas Tech on the front of the uniform, Barncastle and the No.1 on the back in scarlet letters and black lining.

"I think I'm going to leave basketball here at Texas Tech and go out on a high note," Barncastle said. "Kind of move on to the next chapter, I'm applying for medical school in the spring and go from there."

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