C-USA: Can Anyone Stop Jillian Robbins?

By Jean Neuberger - October 12, 2006

The question asked to just about every coach here at Media Days was simple... can anyone stop Tulsa's superstar forward Jillian Robbins, and if so, how?

"Is it possible?," said UAB's Audra Smith, laughing. "She's one of the most phenomenal players I've ever seen."

"I'd sure like someone to tell me, because we haven't found a way to stop her yet," said SMU's Rhonda Rompola.

Not one coach, all day, could give an answer as to how to stop the conference's best player, who last year averaged a double-double in points and rebounds, leading the Golden Hurricane to a C-USA title and taking Tulsa to the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

"She can't be stopped," said UCF's Gail Striegler. "She has so many facets to her game. You can only throw lots of defensive formations at her to try and stop the bleeding to a trickle. If it ever gushes, you're in trouble."

"We'll zone her," said Houston's Joe Curl, laughing. "She's a great rebounder, but she had a lot of weapons around her too last year. She'll have to adjust her game with them gone."

"You just have to contain her," said Joye Lee-McNelis of Southern Miss. "The deadliest part of her game is the offensive glass; you've got to stop her there."

So, with all the coaches geared toward stopping Robbins, what does TU Head Coach Charlene Thomas-Swinson plan to do to free her star player.

"The key to Jillian is to keep her happy and loving to play basketball," said Thomas-Swinson. "She's a naturally carefree and easygoing person, so you have to keep the pressure off of her. We're going to work very hard with our new players to take the pressure off of Jillian, and keep the game fun for her."

Posted by Jean Neuberger at 09:55 PM on October 12, 2006

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