Asjha Jones Named To Olympic Team

by Categorized: Asjha Jones, Connecticut Sun, Geno Auriemma, UConn women's basketball, WNBA Date:

Asjha Jones is the sixth former UConn player on the U.S. Basketball team. Here is the release:

With the addition of 2010 FIBA World Championship gold medalist Asjha Jones (Connecticut Sun), the 2012 U.S. Olympic Women’s Basketball Team was finalized today by USA Basketball. Jones, who joins the 11 previously announced team members, was selected by the USA Basketball Women’s National Team Player Selection Committee, approved by the USA Basketball Board of Directors and is pending final approval by the U.S. Olympic Committee.

“It’s an honor,” said Jones. “My mom, everyone in my family is so excited for me. I think it’s exciting how people respond to you when you tell them. A lot of people want to cry. Just to see the way people react to the news is really special. I’m really exited. I’m so excited to be a part of this.

“It was kind of like I was in disbelief and shock,” Jones said about hearing the news. “I kind of put the Olympics out of my head because I didn’t think I was going to be on the team. First I was surprised that Carol (Callan) was even calling me. Then when I answered and she told me the news, I was very surprised, very shocked. I was really, really honored to be picked up.”
“I’m excited,” said USA and University of Connecticut head coach Geno Auriemma. “I think it’s well deserved. She adds an awful lot of maturity, experience and talent to this team. Some of the teams that we’re going to have to beat in the Olympics, the best teams are really the ones who have the most experienced post players. Asjha has proven herself both in the WNBA and overseas to be able to defend anybody and to be able to score. She’s got experience. All of the things you would look for in a player, she has those qualities. So, when we’re looking at who that 12th player was, having somebody with Asjha’s experience and certainly what she’s done overseas, especially this year, has given us a lot of comfort knowing that we have somebody who can really compliment the other post players who have already been named.”
“As always, this decision was very difficult due to the breadth and quality of the USA National Team pool,” said USA Basketball Women’s National Team Director Carol Callan, a member of the selection committee. “Asjha has shown her abilities throughout the EuroLeague season, culminating in earning MVP honors at the Final Eight. Her abilities and leadership as a veteran of international basketball and over the last several years with our USA National Team program makes her a great choice for this final spot. Her experience pushed her forward in terms of selecting the final roster spot.”
The 6-3 forward was a member of the 2007-08 USA National Team, but was injured during the September 2007 training camp and unable to participate in drills. She returned in 2009, and in her first stint playing for USA Basketball aided the USA to a 3-0 mark and the 2009 UMMC Ekaterinburg International Invitational title. Named to the 2010 USA World Championship Team, Jones was on hand for the team’s four pre-World Championship exhibition games and went on to help lead the U.S. to the gold at the Worlds. Last fall Jones played in the final three of the USA’s five games in its 2011 European Tour.
A 10-year WNBA veteran, Jones is a two-time WNBA All-Star and was named to the 2008 All-WNBA second team. She competes professionally in Europe and after helping propel her Rivas Ecopolis (Spain) squad to the 2012 EuroLeague championship game, Jones was named the 2012 EuroLeague Final Eight MVP. She closed out the season averaging a EuroLeague career-high 17.9 points and 9.0 rebounds per game for Rivas in EuroLeague games.
In her four-year (1999-2002) collegiate career Jones, who played for Auriemma at the University of Connecticut, aided the Huskies to a 136-9 record (.938), won a pair of NCAA crowns (2000, 2002) while advancing to four NCAA Tournaments, including the 2001 Final Four, and earned four Big East regular season and tournament titles.
Named on March 30 to the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team were: Seimone Augustus (Minnesota Lynx), Sue Bird (Seattle Storm), Swin Cash (Chicago Sky), Tamika Catchings (Indiana Fever), Tina Charles (Connecticut Sun), Sylvia Fowles (Chicago Sky), Angel McCoughtry (Atlanta Dream), Maya Moore (Minnesota Lynx), Candace Parker (Los Angeles Sparks), Diana Taurasi (Phoenix Mercury) and Lindsay Whalen (Minnesota Lynx).
The well-balanced and talented U.S. squad will compete for the USA’s fifth-consecutive Olympic gold medal in London this summer. Auriemma will be assisted by DePaul University head coach Doug Bruno, 1988 Olympic gold medalist and Washington Mystics assistant coach Jennifer Gillom and Atlanta Dream head coach Marynell Meadors.

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8 thoughts on “Asjha Jones Named To Olympic Team

  1. Candice DuPree Fan

    Auriemma and UConn will never hear the end of it if USA does not win Gold in London. If either Parker or Augustus or Taurasi gets injured and is unable to play, USA committee will have to play nice if they expect Cappie to say yes to an invitation as the 14th player. Griner being the 12th and Jones the 13th.

    Regarding KBA leaving St Johns after 1 victory over UConn, I hope she ends up burnt out and worn out, with no conference titles, just like Gail G. Now that she took the Michigan job after the previous coach fixed the program, let us if KBA can prevent a downturn.

  2. Geno Fan

    Candice fan—I believed, from press reports, that Griner was going to be on the Olympic squad. She’d be a real asset.
    Kim Barnes Arico is a good coach, deserves to make the most of her victory and to grab the money while it’s offered. Gail G (Duke/Texas) walked into a Hall of Fame Coaches recruiting and had big shoes to fill. It was almost a disaster waiting to happen.
    The Olympic team seems to be an extention of the UConn Maffia, but it’s my Maffia and my team. With the two greatest Women basketball player in the world, DT and Sue, how can they lose??? If DT or Agustus cannot play–Geno will pull up Cappy, Griner or another super player–maybe even Lawson.

  3. Fishpaw31

    Congratulation to Asjha! No one is more deserving than UConn’s quiet and humble warrior of 1999-2002. Often overlooked because of her quiet nature, I am very, very happy for her to get her chance to be a US Olympian. The nation’s Husky-Haters will complain about too much UConn on the team, but too damn bad, I say! Do you want your country to win the gold medal in London this summer? Then you have to have many UConn grads on the team. Congratulation, again, to Asjha, and all the others who made the team.

  4. Eileen

    First of all–Candice DuPree fan, Jones is NOT the 13th player,she is the 12th and LAST player chosen. Griner opted out for consideration days ago (for family reasons). The USA basketball committee will only choose 12 players, unless someone gets hurt before the Olympics start.

    Second of all–I am thrilled that Asjha has been chosen as the 12th player. She really deserves it by her consistent play way back in the day at UCONN, in the WNBA for the CT Sun and in European team play. She was MVP of the Eruoleague this year, a pretty good indication of her abilities since the Euroleague has a lot of great players. Asjha has always been the unsung hero of both the UCONN team and the CT Sun.

    I also want to point out that the 2012 Olympic team with six ex-UCONN players will be formidable, especially with coach Geno. But I am sure many people think that because Geno is the coach that he chose his ex-players. Not so, they are picked by USA basketball committee Geno may have an input, but the committee decides. Also the other six players on the team are great players too and Geno will make sure that they ALL play as a team, just as he does for his UCONN squad.

    GO USA Olympic Team–bring home the gold. Can’t wait–let the play begin.



  6. BKDad

    It’s interesting that they didn’t choose to go with a guard for the 12th slot. Nothing at all against Jones, who I think is a great player, since Griner obviously wouldn’t play guard either.

    Perhaps the selection group feels that size is beginning to matter more in international play. Liz Cambage must be making an impression.

  7. Baylor 80-0 and Counting

    Wake up Eileen. Take off the Husky Blinders. Stop fooling yourself. Jones is the 13th player on the USA Committee’s list. Griner was 12th. Jones was not named until Griner withdrew. Wonder if Auriemma will play only 6 or 7 in the medal round. This way if he fails to win Gold, Auriemma can claim he had no bench. Just like at UConn the past 2 seasons.

  8. Eileen

    Sorry Baylor 80-0 you are reading the wrong articles because Griner took herself out of consideration BEFORE the committee chose the 12th player!! But, I also believe that if she had not done so, she would have been the 12th player.

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