There’s an easy way for Tonya Cardoza to measure the time she’s been away from UConn. It’s been six years since she left to coach Temple and that means she had nothing to do with the recruitment or development of those players now playing for Geno Auriemma.
Then again, she knew the time would come when she began to identify herself more as the Owls’ head coach than one who came to Philadelphia after 14 years on Aureimma’s bench.
That time has come. But as much as she has enjoyed her new and successful career, Cardoza has also discovered the unrelenting aspects of being the boss, the one ultimately responsible for everything.
And with Temple (8-6) set to play its first conference game ever against UConn on Saturday in Bridgeport, she took a few minutes to share with me what it’s like to have the control.
Here is a little of what she had to say:
“It’s a very satisfying time for me, but it’s also a completely different role,” Cardoza said Thursday. “When you are an assistant coach you have things that you worry about. But you also have the ability to step away from them. As a head coach, you are never off. I can never step away to regroup, to even take a few moments to read or finish a book.
“For me, it’s always, constantly watching film. When I was an assistant coach at UConn, there were always times when you weren’t assigned to do a scouting report [on an upcoming opponent] that you didn’t have to watch film. You could get caught up on something else that was important to you.
“But as a head coach, there just isn’t the time. I live in my computer watching film. I haven’t figured out to how to step away from it at all until the season is over.”
More to come for Tonya soon.