Heather Buck Says She Has No Regrets About Anything

by Categorized: Big East women's basketball, Heather Buck, Stanford women's basketball, UConn women's basketball Date:

Thursday afternoon, I stopped to chat with Heather Buck for 10 minutes. As a personal favor, I’d appreciate it if you read what she had to say about the impending end of her playing career at UConn.

It is instructive, a rare view into the mind of a young woman with a lot going for her.

There have been those in UConn Nation who have not treated Heather very well in her five years with the program, as if the only way to judge this young woman’s worth was through basketball.

Here’s what she had to say:

“What I will take with me and treasure are the friendships I have made with the people here, all the time we spent together, what I learned about myself and how to be a teammate.

“We all come here to be a part of the best team, to learn from the best coaches and be the best players we can be. And we also want to contribute to something great. That’s what we all believe [at the start].

“And when you come, you hope you will be a able to contribute on the floor every night, that you will play, get a lot of minutes and score a lot of points. But because that is everyone’s expectation, there are going to be people that will need to find other ways to contribute.

“No one expected I would get mono [when she was a freshman]. No one would have expected that things would go the way they have. There are so many factors in any situation. So you take what happens and make the best of it. I found a different to contribute, by being the best teammate I could be throughout my career.

“Everyone asks [if she regrets her decision to attend UConn over Stanford] and I honestly think it’s a silly question. They ask me a lot. I don’t have any regrets. I never thought that. If it was possible to go back and make the decision again, I would still have chosen to go to UConn.

“My only wish was that I would have done things a little differently, and been able to contribute in a different way. But even if I couldn’t guarantee it might happen, that there was still a chance the same exact thing would happen, I would still come here.

“I have always been very happy with my decision and I have never second-guessed myself. I would make the same choice every time. And when you think about it, it is fruitless to even consider otherwise because you make your choice in life and that’s the way it is. You need to figure it out.

“I still love basketball. It’s hard to consider not having it in my life anymore. It’s what we’ve all [her teammates] have done since we were children. I started playing when I was 10. It’s been more than half my life. The love will never go away. I’ve chosen basketball over so many different activities throughout my life, because it is what I love. We all do that. It’s [the love] not something that will fade and even if not playing I will still be involved somehow.”

One year from now, Heather Buck will likely be a nurse in emergency department of some hospital, perhaps helping to treat someone you love at the Connecticut Children’s Hospital, where she completion her rotation in the fall.

She is a success. She will do what she came to UConn to do. She has scored major points. And we congratulate her for that.

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65 thoughts on “Heather Buck Says She Has No Regrets About Anything

  1. UconnFan

    If nothing else, she has proved to be a great team mate and put the team above her ego. She had a chance to transfer to Umass where she would have been a starter and a star and chose to stay at Uconn and was very important in our win over Baylor when Dolson got in foul trouble.

    1. PhD, MBA

      What ego? Buck knew she sucked and benfitted from playing against smaller and shorter high school players. Same with Stewart who has shown a distaste for playing against girls her own size.

      1. Sal and Irene

        For a holder of a PHD and MBA, you are a poor example of what can go wrong with having so much education that your ego get in the way of clear thinking! Did you perhaps attend a diploma mill?

      2. Artie A...

        Some fake saying they have a PhD and MBA has to use sucked in a sentence? Then continue with ignorance?
        The last thing Heather has is an ego.
        Then you continue to go on and slander Stewart who is in the stat columns as one of our top players. I will not supply the link as your PhD & MBA will get you to it in nano seconds.
        You do not have degrees, you have a sad warped mind. I hope you seek help. You are in my prayers…

      3. Kevin Cavanaugh

        Your titles do not impress me. How you can so easily put down girls who bring their all to the game. Buck might not be as athletic as others her size on UCONN like Tuck or Stokes, but to say she “sucks” is downright disgusting. Buck gives her all whether on the bench or during the few minutes she is in a game. I wonder how many PhD’s and MBA’s you competed against for grades thought that you “sucked?”

        As far as Stewart, I believe she is just beginning to find herself, just like it took Tina Charles 2 years to find herself or that it took Dolson a good year and a half to do the same. It is not Stewie’s fault she is 6’4″ and towered above her peers – she has shown flashes of greatness – she goes from getting a defensive rebound to the other end of the court to get an offensive rebound and putback quicker than anyone. She can block and she can shoot 3’s – something most bigs cannot do. Just like everyone else, you are entitled to your opinion but I expect more from a PhD/MBA. You should have learned a little more in your Human Relations classes. Buck and Stewart do not suck – you do my friend.

  2. BKDad

    There can be only one national champion at the end of the year. Only one player of the year. Is everybody other kid who puts on sneakers and sweats in a gym a loser? Seems like that may be the definition to a lot of people. (Old saying – Basketball is not a life or death matter for some people. It’s far more important than that.)

    Good for Heather. Not a loser at all. Or a dope.

  3. walter

    a least she stayed loyal and stayed at uconn and put teams first shes greata nd she did nice job of defense on brittneygrinet last eyar hope geno plays her in baylr game again takecare all gouconn

      1. Kevin Cavanaugh

        Sometimes, Brown, all it takes is 7 seconds. Last year everyone was faulting Faris because she didnt score. What Kelly did, instead, is everything else – steal, rebound, assist, and give 100 percent every minute. Now she has scoring in her arsenal. For those who still do not respect her, they will seriously miss her next year.

        As far as Buck, not many kids can sit on the bench for 95 percent of the time and give their all when they come in. As far as the Baylor game, Geno might want to have Buck throw her weight against Griner – it will save Dolson and Stewart from wasting fouls.

        Another note on SEVEN minutes. What would happen if Dolson fouled out and there were SEVEN seconds left and UCONN was down by 2 points and BUCK got an offensive rebound and scored two and got fouled by Griner (and Griner fouled out in the process) and Buck made a free throw and UCONN won by 1 point?

        Would Buck be remembered for the handful of games she played for two minutes or would she be remembered as the girl who faced down Griner and won the game?

        Buck has hung in there while others have left for Kentucky and other teams. Buck is not a quitter and that might be her biggest asset. Kudos to Heather Buck.

        Oh, take time to watch her on the bench when she seldom sits because she is rooting after every UCONN point by giving Hi 5’s. Buck rocks.

  4. Broadway Bill

    John–those that expected more from Heather are not “dopes”. She went to UConn and accepted a scholarship to play basketball. She was redshirted. But redshirting is a gift, it gives a freshman time to mature and to learn the Uconn system. Apparently she didn’t.
    She’s a very, Very, VERY nice kid. Accepted her role. But never improved. Geno stated he has to coach freshmen and Sophs more and expects more from Jr’s and Sr’s. That is why for 3 years Heather did not get more PT. We all love Heather, expected more from her, and hoped a Connecticut girl would show the world. But she doesn’t have a mean bone in her body. So she sits.

    As one who bounced off one wall to another wall and worked at lowly jobs for a living for years–I don’t believe in regrets they don’t help and no one wants to hear them. We are a “what did you do for me today” world.

    1. browns

      I agree.Seems like a terrific young lady,but she is not a very good basketball player. People keep bringing up her game 2 years ago against Baylor.I mean get real. It’s not like she dominated Griner.She helped out for 7 mins. covering her. All these comments you think she was responsable for Uconn winning.And as far as transfering,wherever she went she would not be a star.I wish her nothing but the best as her life moves forward but she’s had 5 years to get better and never did.

          1. Saint John

            Buck was a wasted basketball scholarship. Some one this board act like Buck was on a nursing scholarship and was a walk on at UConn out of the kindness of her heart.

          2. JD

            St. John. Ur a fool. Why pick on Buck? She was part of the team and tried her pest. She isn’t perfect and no one else is. Buck wasn’t a waste of anything. If you dont like her why comment? Stay classy.

  5. coach777b

    Heather Buck has shown ‘true grit’! I enjoy every minute she is able to play. Contrary to popular opinion, I don’t see her as an underachiever. She achieved greatness at a sall school in a small state. Then she joined a team consisting of players who had achieved even more at larger schools in larger states. Yet, she has kept her head up, achieved her academic goals and enjoyed being a member of one of the best teams in the nation.
    I say ‘Bravo’ to Heather, she is an inspiration to all the girls out there at small schools or schools where winning is still a dream. Thank you Heather, the years of watching you grow has been an inspiration.

    1. Saint John

      Buck never had a chance. Coaches knew that. They played UConn fans for $ by allowing her to sit on the bench for 5 years.

      1. JD

        St John. ur an idiot. If you dont like her, why comment? Stay classy. Even if Heather didn’t get much playing time, she’s part of the team and did her best to play well. None of us are perfect. I wish Buck the best in the future.

  6. Bob

    Thanks for playing for UCONN and contributing. I’m sure you have been a great teammate and person and wish you success as a nurse. A profession that requires all the attributes that you displayed as a Huskie.

  7. Bruce

    for Browns and Broadway Bill. I won’t bore you with my credentials, but I played and coached the game. I suspect that your game ended when you didn’t make your middle school team and your moms beat you at HORSE in the driveway. To disrespect Ms. Buck the way you do shows your ignorance of what it takes to perform at the highest level of the college game. I fear for your children.

      1. browns

        Freddy-You suspect wrong.I just get sick of people complaining why she doesn’t play and how she shut down Griner.
        As for myself-All state in basketball,football,and baseball.53 scholarship offers. Don’t fear for my children.One was an all state volleyball player and 2 were all state soccer players.including all New England in college.
        I happened to have met Ms. Beck briefly when she was a junior in high school and she was a marvelous young teenager then and I surmise she is even a better young woman now. It’s people like you that blame Geno for her not playing more.There have been a lot of kids that never developed or just weren’t good enough to play for him and sat on the bench for 4 or more years but I suspect because she is from Conn. is why people make such a big thing about why she doesn’t get playing time.

          1. Tom


            Nice self-serving comments. Were you the author of Advertisements for Myself? You are a patheic, extemely small person with a narrow worldview.

        1. FREDDY UNKOOL


        2. Kevin Cavanaugh

          I believe Geno is one of the premier coaches in the game. I also believe there have been a few players Geno could have developed more and Buck might be one of them. Coaches use a variety of techniques to bring out the best in each player. Look how long it took for Geno to develop Tina Charles. Other players Geno did not have success with chose to go elsewhere and they are doing well there. Sometimes yelling works, sometimes TLC works, sometimes it takes a little more one on one.

          Personally, I like Alison Vernay of Duke and I believe if she went to UCONN instead of Duke, she would be a starter and a star but that is ONLY my opinion. I also believe if Buck went to Stanford or ND, she might have developed into a starter – but I have no proof of that – just gut. Sometimes coaches gamble on a few kids that come along quicker and sacrifice those who dont progress as fast. Those kids sit the bench and seldom get playing time. Some leave, some become cheerleaders. Buck copes in her own way because she probably is a great kid. No scholarship was “wasted” on Buck and I am sure she was not accepted at UCONN to fill up the stands. Lets put this to sleep. Buck surely is not deserving of all the negative energy being wasted on her here.

          If I am ever in the emergency room, I hope I have an ER nurse with a personality and dedication like she displays.

  8. Jay

    There are 12-15 members of a team each wanting to play 40 minutes. There are only 200 min per game. each has a role to play. Some will be on the “B” squad and force the A team to play better. She has been a true team player. Not griping and not quitting. See Shea Ralph as a team player. She might have been the greatest player had it not been for her knees

  9. SBB

    Remember Paige Sauer. Great person also, but didn’t seem to have the fight in her that Shea Ralph, Jen Rizzoti had. Height doesn’t make you assertive or agressive and I think had Heather been more assertive or agressive she might have played more.

  10. Denise in AZ

    Heather did shut down Griner in that game, and that was crucial to UCONN winning. She is a good defender and probably contributes a lot in practice. She earned her scholarship money as a good teammate.

    Employers look for smart, hardworking college grads with a positive attitude. Heather will be a big success off the court!

    1. Mildrid Pierce

      I know when Geno recruits player he says to himself—she’s louzy at basketball but she’s a good teammate. Let’s see if I have 11 like her we can win last place in the BE every year. She was recruited because she was a Connecticut player of the Year, a project. A project that never moved forward.
      YES she is nice yes she is cooperative yes she enjoys sitting on the bench and she will be a great nurse. Thanks to Geno and UConn.

      1. Kevin Cavanaugh

        I agree with almost your entire comment except regarding Buck enjoying sitting on the bench. She practices on the “B” team, giving the “A” team a solid workout and keeping them at peak performance. Not many people here value what goes on in practice but if te 2nd string and other players did not keep the starters at peak performance, UCONN would not have all those banners hanging in the rafters – nor would they have some of the retired numbers hanging there as well.

        Buck would “enjoy” minutes in every game but she settles on the bench because she knows that is a part o being a team player. Buck will support the team in any way she can.

  11. TGIGG

    Very enlightening to hear her thoughts, thank you JA. She may be young in years but very mature in her mind, what’s called an “old soul”. She is, and will continue to be, a success at living her life. As an employer I always seek team players with positive attitudes, Heather Buck fits those requirements perfectly.

  12. Kreddy Fool

    Heather did the best she could do. How many reading basketball forums can say that? Just sayin

    1. Broadway Bill

      Heather took a scholarship. With that comes responsibility. She was expected to improve. She redshirted. Red shirts get one extra year in which to become better. Heather never improved. Any game time she got/gets takes time away from the new kids and that hurts the team. She does not have the assertiveness to become good. Nice kid, but in basketball they end last. DT a nasty mean player one of the best in the game.
      Have a great nursing career Heather, you’ve earned it. But give Geno thanks, he has earned that too.

      1. Bruce

        I hope one day, she is at your bedside administering a catheter, what will you think of her UCONN experience then?

  13. bridget

    very nice article I have always liked this girl she really does have alot of class……….

    1. Big Chief

      I for one can’t wait for Doty (and Hartley) to graduate. Overrated guards on teams with real super stars like Maya and KML.

  14. ray-ray

    she should have no regrets—she got a free education,traveled all over world and all she did was run up and down sidelines giving high fives

    1. Ripoff

      how Buck qualified for 5 one year basketball scholarships is the 9th wonder of the world

      1. JD

        Wow. You all are in this thread morons. What has she done to you? Nothing.Why put someone down cuz they didn’t play well or get much playing time? She was pat of the team. She may not have been a great player but she did her best. She wasn’t a waste or anything and how you know she got a free education? I wish her nothing but the best after her Uconn career is over.

    2. Kevin Cavanaugh

      Ray-Ray, you are so Wrong-Wrong. For every game UCONN plays, they probably have 3 – 4 practice sessions and Buck showed up for each and every one of them. She had a few health issues just like everyone on the UCONN team. They all have had down times and during which they did not scrimmage or practice. Other top 10 teams probably use their bench a little more than UCONN and I do not agree or disagree with that strategy, but there have been many games Buck could have been put in to relieve another “big” player.

      In my humble opinion, I believe Doty should get less playing time because she does not appear to be giving it her all. She is on scholarship also. Sure, Doty has had several injuries but her effectiveness has waned. I also believe Stewie is deserving of a few more minutes a game. Sure, she is learning some by sitting, but in the upcoming Baylor game, two bigs at a time could offset Griner. Sit Doty in the Baylor game and play two bigs at a time (Dolson/Buck) and (Stokes/Stewart). Those combinations of bigs should give Griner a lot of grief.

        1. Kevin Cavanaugh

          Ripoff, no one here should bring in someone’s 5th grader or mother. Your comment is tasteless and unprofessional.

          There are dozens and dozens of college basketball and football players who are drafted into the pro’s. some get big signing bonuses and some of them make it and some dont – but none of them get a free ride.

          Maybe your employer feels like you are getting a free rie. The Hartford Courant is giving you a free ride here. I would have blocked you long ago.

  15. Artie A...

    John, I have not been here in some time as there is so little of it these days. I take a peek and move on to the men and football. I saw the post for Heather and had to take a moment as she will be moving on this year.
    I can’t believe how bastardly cruel and ignorant some so called fans have become. Out of what woodwork are these idiots crawling?
    Heather is a very humble kind person who has worked hard for five years and represented us and her team well. The ignorants must not be watching the game and see who is running up and down the bench cheering on the ones playing. This after practicing under one of the most demanding staffs in the nation all week knowing she may not get a minute.
    Ignorance here is running rampant as some of them think every girl on the team will or should be a super star. No basketball knowlede just slander. Actuly they have a beef with Geno but not the balls to go there.
    GO DOGS!!!!!

    1. Kevin Cavanaugh

      Artie, your comments were way overdue,timely, thoughful, and quite appropriate. Maybe all those individuals with all the spiteful, hateful, tacky comments will crawl back into the sewers and the dumpsters.

  16. billnaples

    Artie seems to have said it best. Thanks Artie. Apparently most of these cheap shot artists don’t get the “math” of it. Wasted scholarship? Really? 200 minutes in a game are available. Even if you wanted to distribute evenly i this case among 11 players you only get 18+ minutes per. Remember Walker, Johnson, and Engeln have all transferred. Only Walker would likely have been getting significant minutes. The facts are that Heather has contributed to the team in many ways and will contribute to society in her professional life. Unlike a number of the dregs who have chosen to be nasty. BTW on “browns’ comment I believe about his “credentials” of All-State this that and everything and tons of offers, etc. so WHO ARE YOU? Afraid soeone might check up on your claims. And if you werer that good which sport did you turn pro in? Just wondering.

    1. Auriemma on Hartley

      Tell that to the players who deserved to play for UConn but did not because Geno and CD played to fans emotions by having a CT player on the bench.

    2. browns

      I never said that I was that good.And it’s the first time I’ve ever mentioned on any board about playing sports.I was just offended when Bruce said that I never played anything and didn’t know what it takes to excell.I do. But I should have just shrugged it off.I mean who really cares?This was 40 yrs. ago and there where a lot of people better than I was. After breaking 2 vertibre in my back and crushing my foot and ankle my playing sports was over.It may sound foolish but I really do hate when people brag abut themselves.On another board a person is always talking about how he makes a million dollars a year. Who cares? This is a sports blog.As far as Heather goes I did not disrespect her.In fact I root for her but it just gets ridiculous the way fans think she sould be playing more.There are some blogs here that are pretty mean.I did not mean to be that way.I was just stating my opinion.

  17. Jane Doe

    It would be nice if a person could post their opinions without experts like Steve Gee, Mike McManus, and freddy kool rebutting and believing only their opinions matter. And some Americans wonder why Congress can’t be more efficient and effective. We live in a society where people cannot have an opinion without getting attacked by know it alls.

  18. Arnie of Newtown

    Loved by many “real fans”.

    Groan when she misses and cheers wildly when she scores. Surely she’s disappointed in not being a ” go to ” player, but she’s got stick-to-itiveness.

    I’m proud of this young woman and the values she has.

    Always will be remembered.

  19. 16 year fan

    I have to wonder, What is the point of UConn Women’s Basketball? Is it to train and prepare the recruits to be ready for the WNBA draft, so they can get the best WNBA Contracts? If that is the goal, there have been many cases of students that failed to do well at UConn. I think the goal is to provide a means to an education, and a chance to become successful in whatever path is chosen. In that case, Heather Buck is a success story. She has done at least as much as walk on players that were later given a scholarship. She has continued to be a part of the basekball team while in nursing school. Geno and his staff know how she has matured and what she has done. I’m sure he would tell the rest of us to mind our own business.

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