Coach Sharp is excited about this year, not just because of the potential the team brings to the court, but with the knowledge that every game played will lead to more experienced players.
"We are the under-dog this year," says Coach Sharp, a position she agrees is a new one, but the team is ready to prove themselves.
This year's goals and expectations are no different than any other year. Each player is brought in believing they can and will win a championship. That is one part of being a Lady Raider, and living up to those expectations is something players grow accustomed to.
"We always have a goal of being Big 12 Champions, winning 20 games, and we always want to go to the Final Four."
The toughest team in the Big 12 might be the toughest team in the nation according to Coach Sharp.
"Texas is poised to make a deep run into the NCAA tournament this year. They are definitely the team to beat in the Big 12. This may be their year."
Coach Sharp believes the strengths of the Lady Raiders lay in the balance of the team and the work ethic.
"We have changed some weaknesses from this summer into strengths, the scoring will be better as well."
Coach Sharp's concern lies within the depth of the bench. Only time will tell how deep of a bench the Lady Raiders will have.
Coach Sharp on:
Cisti Greenwalt: "Her greatest contribution is on defense, and is one of our most improved offensive players."
Erin Grant: "Will look to shoot the ball more this year, and is one of the best point guards in the country."
Chesley Dabbs: "Is our most improved player, and is our best perimeter player."
LaToya Davis: "She is our emotional leader, out-runs players, and has gained strength over the summer."
Alesha Robertson: "Best perimeter shooter we have, she will have a good inside presence."
Brooke Baughman: "Will probably be our first perimeter player off the bench, great passer, and is gaining confidence in shooting."
Darrice Griffin: "Will probably be our first post player off the bench, great offensive game, and everything she was advertised to be." "She will remind you of Plenette Pierson."
Patrice Edwards: "She can block shots, run the court, you can't coach 6'6, and she improves every day."
Erin Myrick: "She brings more bulk to our post players, she will be very physical." "She's earned some minutes."
Judith Smith: "She is probably our most athletic guard we've ever had here, a little unsure, but will gain more confidence when we play the better defensive teams."
Tawanna Flowers: "Defensive specialist, and will be able to keep the ball out of people's hands."
Enrica Johnson: "Will be sidelined for another month."
This year's Lady Raider team is young, but they have the drive and desire needed to overcome youth. Look for great improvements during the pre-conference schedule, and for the team to round into shape nicely as Big 12 play starts.