Fahey building young Illini team

CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) -- New Illini Women's Basketball head coach Nancy Fahey is a little more than three months into her tenure at Illinois and she's diving right in. WCIA 3 Sport Director Bret Beherns went one-on-one with Fahey.

Bret Beherns:

Nancy you've been on the job about three and a half months now, has it been what you thought it would be or has it been a little different?

Nancy Fahey:

"I don't think you can anticipate something you've never been a part of before so there's some things that are new.  I don't know if I didn't anticipate, I talked to a lot of people what it was going to be like and I've enjoyed the last three and a half months and I'm looking forward to more."


What's one thing you're excited about for this upcoming season, now that you've had a chance to see your team practice?


"I think what I just left was practice.  I just love working with the people from Illinois, the team from Illinois, it's been exciting.  Their response is the exciting thing for me."


What's one thing you say we've got a lot of work left to do still?


"I think every coach wants to put their spin on what they think their culture is going to be and that's what we're trying to work on, giving them a chance to grow and try to be a grittier team.  Not that they weren't but we want to make sure we put a team on the court that every loose ball is going to be ours and we're going to work hard on that // What I've expected out of them is effort and intensity and I think that's what they're giving us and that's all I can ask and we've just got to get better everyday."


This is a big month for you guys recruiting, you guys hit the road now, what do you hope to establish and set a foundation for next year's class?


"Being hired late a lot of relationships have already been developed with the 2018's, 19's so we're trying to develop that fast, as best as we can.  So getting out, showing the orange and blue on the sidelines, showing our interest, we're working hard but this is going to be a key month for us."



The Illini return all five starters from last year's squad as well as four newcomers.The team went 3-13 in Big Ten play last season. While at Washington, Fahey led her teams to five Division III national titles and 737 wins. The Illini say they're excited for what she and her staff bring to the program.

"Things are going good," junior forward Alex Wittinger said. "We're all really excited, glad about Coach Fahey.  She's been doing some really good work and we're all behind her for sure."
"I'm really enjoying it," senior guard Kennedy Cattenhead said. "I just feel like everybody has embracing the new coach and the new staff and really having a good time and really excited about it."

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