The habits, hobbies and past basketball careers of USF’s new freshmen hoopers
The 5-foot-9-inch guard from nearby San Jose, Calif. said that the biggest reason she chose USF was because she has always loved the city for its diversity and beauty. Once here, she found that she liked the small classes and the small campus as it made the community here feel like a tight-knit one.
Kayln Simon was part of a state champion team with Archbishop Mitty High School, but even after facing the best high school teams, she had to adjust to the speed and skill of Division I college ball.
“College basketball is played at a much faster pace. The players are smarter, more athletic and stronger,” she said. “The hardest part to adapt to was the conditioning level and the tempo which we are expected to play with.”
Simon is prepared to work hard this season and hopes to make a run for the WCC Championship this upcoming season.
When she is not working out on the court or in the classroom, Simon likes to spend her free time exploring the city with her teammates or just hanging out with some friends.
“I love our team. Especially the fact that we are a mix of different personalities, which makes all the time we spend together really fun.”
Basketball is a priority for Claudia Price, but so is quality education, which is why she made the choice to attend USF. The freshman biology major was placed on the academic honor roll for all four years of high school. After college, the she is considering a job as a dentist.
Along with excelling in her studies, the Mesquite, Texas native also performs on the court. As a high school senior, she averaged 16.6 points per game and led the state in rebounds, averaging 14.4.
For the season, the 5-foot-11-inch forward’s personal goals include contributing to the team in any way she can, being a threat on the court and being a team player.
Rachel Howard, a 5-foot-10-inch guard from Berkeley, Calif. was a three-time Northern California champion and three-time state runner-up with Berkeley High School. She chose to play at USF because she believes that the team and the coaching staff are the best in the country.
“My goal for the season is…to simply get better in every way,” Howard told USFDons.com. “Get stronger, smarter, quicker. I want to be a lethal shooter.”
When she is not playing basketball, the Bay Area native’s hobbies include dancing and playing card games.
“Shima” is a kinesiology major originally from Las Vegas, Nev. The 5-foot-11-inch freshman forward not only played four years of varsity basketball, but also participated in two years of track and field and one season of varsity volleyball at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Calif. She averaged 16 points and 12 rebounds, which helped her win team and league most valuable player honors.
Carothers told USFDons.com that her goal for the season was “to become a better player by helping those around me, doing whatever is asked and needed of me and playing my role.”
In her spare time, she enjoys dancing, attempting to sing, doodling and eating.