One can decide that the 2013-2014 N.C. State women's basketball team can be defined by either Katy Perry's "Roar"
or Imagine Dragons' "Radioactive".
. With seven seniors and five players with significant starting minutes, one could choose "Roar" to define the potential of this team. With a coaching change to Wes Moore, one could use "Radioactive" (welcome to the new world) to describe the team.
With seven seniors, five returning players with significant starting minutes and six players who were rated as four star in high school by HoopGurlz, even if Kellie Harper were still the coach of the State women's basketball team, one would expect a finish in the top third of the conference. With new coach Wes Moore, an experienced coach with much success at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga, one would not expect any less.
State has skill, speed and experience in the back court, and skill and size in the front court. Red shirt junior Len 'Nique Brown shared starting point guard duties with senior Myisha Goodwin Coleman. Coleman started for a major portion of last year's schedule while Brown started the last portion of the schedule. While Brown is faster and has more offensive and point guard skills, Coleman has been a starter since her freshman year and is a streaky three point shooter. Krystal Barret started at the shooting guard all of last year and at five-nine has good speed, defensive skills (named defensive player of the year by the team) and ball handling ability.
In the front court returning starters six-two Kody Burke and six-five Markeisha Gatling add skill and size. Kody Burke, who played power forward last season, should be a candidate for All-ACC. At times last year, Burke looked the part of all conference, and at other times she disappeared; for example, the Hoops for Hope Game. Markeisha Gatling, who set a North Carolina high school single season field goal percentage record of 74.1 per cent, played two years at Gulf Coast Community College. As a result, it took her a good part of last year's season to adjust to playing in a conference like the ACC where players of her size and skill are present.
The question is who will replace small forward Marissa Kastanek who was All ACC last season, was a freshman All-American and was ACC freshman of the year. Coach Moore could choose to start Brown, Goodwin Coleman and Krystal Barrett in a three guard line-up with Kody Burke and Markeisha Gatling starting at the foward and center positions. However, with Brown at five-five and Goodwin Coleman at five-four, the guards would be small. On the other hand, Coach Moore could start Brown and Barrett at the guard positions and either five-eleven Breezy Williams or five-eleven Ashly Eli at the small forward giving State size, speed and athleticism at the guard and small forward positions. Williams always looked like the most athletic player on the team during her freshman, sophomore and junior years, and looked like she would play significant minutes after her freshman year; however, a knee injury at the beginning of her sophomore year seemed to curtail her progress. Eli, rated a high school four star recruit by Hoop Gurlz, received significant minutes as a substitute at the three position last year. While she only scored 2.4 points per game last season, she was considered an excellent defender.
Six-four Lakeesa Daniel, another player rated as four star by HoopGurlz in high school, is a red-shirt senior and provides experience in front court rotation with Burke and Gatling. In watching Daniel in pregame warm-ups, one cannot help but notice her smooth jump shot; however, she appears to lack confidence in her game. A break-out senior year by Daniel would help State greatly.
A player whose ability to add to the team's success is unknown but promising is six foot Julianna Prim discussed in this BTP article. Five-eight guard Dominique Wilson transferred to State from Arkansas where she started 19 games and averaged 6.6 points per game. Wilson is one of State's four-star players, but will have to red-shirt this year due to the transfer. Five-eight guard Miah Spencer and six-one forward Jennifer Mathurin make up the 2013-2014 freshman class. Additionally, five-eleven guard Kaley Moser is a walk-on whose father and older sister, a dance team member, attended State.
So, it is:
I'm waking up, I feel it in my bones
Enough to make my systems blow
Welcome to the new age, to the new age
Welcome to the new age, to the new age
Whoa, oh, oh, oh, oh, whoa, oh, oh, oh, I'm radioactive, radioactive
Whoa, oh, oh, oh, oh, whoa, oh, oh, oh, I'm radioactive, radioactive.