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Podcast: Rutgers women’s basketball head coach Coquese Washington



Photo credit Rutgers Athletics

Welcome to episode No. 51 of The Scarlet Faithful podcast. Joining this episode is Rutgers women’s head coach Coquese Washington. In her first season, the Scarlet Knights have won three Big Ten games including recently beating her former team Penn State in overtime.

With just eight scholarship players, Washington and her staff have balanced things well to get the most out of this team so far. They’ve quickly established themselves as a team that plays hard and battles for 40 minutes. Returning players like Chyna Cornwell has made major progress while newcomer Kaylene Smikle is a strong contender for Big Ten Freshman of the Year.

Despite some lopsided losses earlier in the season, Big Ten play has seen this team improve throughout. They’re No. 3 in the league in blocked shots and No. 5 in free throw shooting percentage. At 9-14 overall and 3-8 in league action, RU is tied for 10th place in the Big Ten. They just completed a stretch of playing three top 15 teams over the last couple of weeks.

Rutgers plays three of their next four games at Jersey Mike’s Arena starting with Wisconsin on Sunday, February 5 at 2 p.m. ET.

This episode includes topics like player development, embracing of roles, managing minutes, building the culture and establishing an identity, expectations for the rest of this season and much more.

Thanks to coach Washington for taking time out of her busy schedule to be to join this episode. And thank you for listening and or watching once again.



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  1. FGM3RC73

    February 4, 2023 at 1:22 am

    A great interview. They have indeed gotten better as the season progressed. When I saw them in the early part I didn’t see how they could win 1 BIG game much less the 3 they have so far. They seem to have gained Better control of their TO problems, which has a lot to do with their improved perfomance. Let’s hope they continue to progress for the rest of the season. One question: did you discuss next year’s recruiting class? I saw that there was an article on Jillian Huerter in the Ledger today and she seems to be the real deal. Not quite sure why she is with the team but not playing but anyway, are there any other commitments for next year?

    • Aaron Breitman

      February 4, 2023 at 2:48 am

      Thank you!

      Jillian Huerter enrolled early this second semester. Usually when you do that it’s too acclimate to college life and develop earlier within the program. Get a jump on being a freshman but it’s a big ask to just throw her into the fire mid season. Hopefully she can develop like her brother did. Seems like a solid get.

      I didn’t bring up recruiting and wanted to focus on the season. Coach can’t comment on any recruits specifically until they sign. No one else has signed for next season other than Huerter. I plan to speak to coach after the season and will definitely ask about recruiting.

      Thanks for watching/listening to the interview.

  2. pj43

    February 4, 2023 at 4:07 pm

    I’m impressed by what Coach Washington has accomplished with a limited number of scholarship players and a lack of depth. To get players she did not recruit to buy into her vision of what she wants this program to be makes me think that she’ll be able to recruit well as she builds this program. Rutgers seems to have another basketball coach who wants to build an identity on defense and rebounding. Aaron asked interesting questions and that made for an opportunity to get a good insight on where this coach is coming from and what she wants to build. I’m thinking that Pat Hobbs did it once again with this hire. Onward & upward for the Rutgers athletic program!

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