Oct. 30, 2010
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Kelsey Cermak is a 6-foot-1 senior on the University of Iowa women’s basketball team. A native of Norwalk, Iowa, she is one of six homegrown Hawkeyes on the 2010-11 roster. Cermak played in all 34 games last season and during her 61-game collegiate career she has scored 77 points with 66 rebounds.
What does that mean to be voted team captain by your peers?
It means a lot to me. It’s going to be a lot different type of work than last year because I want to leave here knowing that the juniors can be captains next year. That’s one thing Abby (Emmert) and Johanna (Solverson) made sure when they left that they knew somebody else could take over. That’s kind of what I’m doing now.
What is it like playing alongside All-American Kachine Alexander?
She is a great player. We were talking and I don’t think there is any better way to go out than with a Big Ten championship, like the way we started.
Coach Lisa Bluder refers to you as the `team mom.’ What role does the team mom play for the team?
The biggest thing is scheduling outside of practice and making sure everybody’s where they’re supposed to be; making sure that everybody is always on time and knows what they’re doing and stuff like that.
Three straight 20-win seasons mean expectations are high for 2010-11. How do you deal with that pressure?
How we handle it is if you look back at last season our backs were kind of against the wall and we started 1-4, we didn’t think about it and that’s the best thing about these sophomores now is we’re not under pressure, we’re just going to play the game like we did last season and that will continue on to this season. We don’t think about that stuff.
“It’s going to be a lot different type of work than last year because I want to leave here knowing that the juniors can be captains next year. That’s one thing Abby (Emmert) and Johanna (Solverson) made sure when they left that they knew somebody else could take over.”
UI senior Kelsey Cermak
You are a native Iowan. How does it feel to be part of a team with half its members coming from in-state?
You look back and it’s always been Abby Emmert coming here, Wendy Ausdemore coming here; growing up you look up to them and seeing they played for the Hawk s and they represent their state and that’s what you want to continue doing. Jaime (Printy) came and she’s going to continue to do that to other girls from Linn-Mar and I think it’s kind of a domino effect. Coach Bluder is a big part of that too because you want to play for her because she does represent the state so well.
After such an outstanding high school career, was it difficult to become a role player at Iowa?
It was kind of an expectation when I came into this school; I didn’t have an expectation; I was going to do whatever I could to help the team and that’s the personality I brought into it and it has worked out pretty well.
Do you ever get the urge to be that go-to scorer on the team like during the high school days?
Everything during a season goes by so fast and you’re so wrapped up in the team that it never crosses your mind. That’s not realistic now. We want Jaime Printy making all the 3’s right now because she’s obviously so good. It doesn’t cross my mind.
There have been many exciting times during your career here. What are your most memorable personal highlights?
All of the fondest memories took place at Wisconsin my freshman year that’s where we won the Big Ten (regular season) championship and then last season getting that big win to tie for third. Wisconsin has been a good place for us the past couple of years so that’s where most of those have come from.
What are your future plans as a communications studies major?
I had an internship this summer at the (University of Iowa) Foundation so I kind of hoped to get back into development, but I will probably go to grad school first. It’s a very open degree and that’s kind of why I chose it.
The Hawkeyes had a losing record the year before you arrived. How nice would it be to leave after a fourth 20-win season and a fourth trip to the NCAA Tournament?
It would feel pretty good. Coach Bluder and I talked about that and we’re not sure but we think (Kachine) and I would be the first player under her to go to four NCAA Tournaments. That’s the ultimate goal.