Connect with us


Jaelyne Kirkpatrick Chooses To Play In Big Ten Conference



Jaelyne Kirkpatrick

Jaelyne KirkpatrickOn October 4, 2014, Jaelyne Kirkpatrick (5’7″, PG, 2015) of Oakville, ON, made her verbal commitment to attend the University of Illinois of the Big Ten Conference in the Fall of 2015.

“I am really excited to get started with them. They’re a growing program, and I’m excited about that because I’m looking to impact the program and take them to the next level”, said Kirkpatrick about the Big Ten conference school who had their challenges in the 2013-2014 season.

And, looking forward to the challenge, went on to say, “I mean, they are playing in the Big Ten, and I’m excited about that!”

Kirkpatrick, ranked #2 in the nation overall in the Class of 2015,  may be unassuming in stature, but her game is big time. As a Point Guard, she is very much a vocal leader on the court, executing great court vision and game management ability. She has a very good knack for scoring , by being able to knock down an extended 3-pointer or by her ability to get her defender off balance en route to driving the ball to the net.

As a defender she can stay toe to toe with the best of them, by using a good lateral movement and a proven ability to turnover her opponent for steals.

All of which she hopes to implement as soon as she becomes a Fighting Illini.

“I understand that when you come in you have to work for your playing time, but I definitely think that I am capable of getting on the court as a Freshman.”

“They pulled in another really good girl in Cierra Rice (5’8″, G, Grosse Pointe South, MI), I think that together we have a good shot at changing the program.”

Having more than her fair share of schools to consider, Illinois fit just about all of her criteria that she looked for in a University. So, along with the connection she was able to make with what could be on the court, Kirkpatrick several other reasons to wear the navy blue and orange next year.

Jaelyne Kirkpatrick“Obviously, they are closer to home so my friends and family can come out and support me. I’m really close to my family so it’s nice they can come out there and watch me play sometimes.”

“I love the coaches. I instantly made a connection with them. I like how Coach Mike [Divilbliss] is really hard all with the girls and I feel I’m really going to learn a lot from him, and also coach Matt [Bollant]. I mean you can tell that he really cares a lot about his players.”

“I want to coach one day”, said Kirkpatrick. “I really want to coach Division I basketball, so I think it’s important to be a part of a program where I think I can grow.”

On Kirkpatrick’s short list, she had also considered Utah and Vanderbilt on her short list after receiving interest from an overwhelming number of schools.

“Feels great”, she said to finally have this behind her.
“I’m really relieved, to finally have all of this pressure off of me. I’m looking forward to improving on the things that I need to do before I take my next step in University: finishing off in high school, getting good grades…working on ball and then…enough!”, she said with a laugh.

It has been a very busy summe edit Kirpatrick. After finishing a solid rep season with the Oakville Venom, she packed her bags and competed with the Canadian National Cadette Team in the Czech Republic. Afterwards, she joined A-Game to compete in a couple of tournament to round out July viewing period.

With this big decision now behind her, she can focus in on completing the remainder of the season for her Loyola Hawks high school basketball team, who have a great chance at allowing her to win their first ever OFSAA (provincial high school) Championship.

Jaelyne wanted to thank her dad who has been a big part of her life and who was a big part the whole recruiting process.
“He’s been there every step of the way. My family…my mom, who’s been there every step of the way. I know she has my best interest in mind…obviously my friends, and teammates, teamates big time…and of course my coaches Yaw Afful [A-Game Coach] and Pat Traynor [Oakville Venom Coach], he’s helped me big time!”