Jayne Appel relives draft-day jitters
Watching the WNBA draft this week has brought back a lot of emotions I experienced last year and made me even more excited for the upcoming season.
I remember sitting there for what seemed like an eternity, waiting to hear my name called. I woke up that morning so nervous and only got more nervous when I finally was sitting at the table with my coach, [Stanford assistant] Amy Tucker, and my parents. All the players at this year's draft seemed to be going through a similar wave of emotions: excitement, anxiousness, nervousness. All of these emotions and more are a part of the big day.
Once my name was finally called I remember just feeling relief and realizing that I was officially a professional basketball player. To have this accomplishment under my belt was something I was very proud of. I went out and celebrated with my family that night. It took a little while to hit me that playing the sport I love was now my job.
The players who were at the draft with me then stayed for the following three days and had an introduction to the WNBA. The WNBA prepared us during these conference-setting days for such things as a 401k, insurance, fashion, appearance rules, etc. It was a time that I really benefited from, by acting like a sponge. I learned a whole lot about stuff that had normally just been taken care of (the gloriousness of college). However, it was exciting to know that I was going to be taking care of myself and be responsible for everything that happened in my life.
At this year's draft the 2011 class looked fabulous! They sounded very excited about the upcoming season and becoming a professional player. I was really happy with San Antonio's selection of Danielle Robinson, Danielle Adams and Porsha Phillips. I played AAU ball with Robinson when I was younger. Then, in high school (the Northern California Championships) and college (the Final Four), we were always competing against each other. It is funny how things really do come full circle. It will be nice to be on the same team once again!
I am looking forward to training camp and getting back down to Texas, this time not as a rookie as well!