Ask WNBA Top Prospect Janel McCarville!
McCarville is a TWO-TIME WBCA/Kodak All-America Team member. She was selected to the United States Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) All-America Squad and was also a finalist for several other national player of the year awards, including the Wooden Award, Naismith Award and Wade Trophy. Janel earned All-Big Ten honors four times in her career and was the first Golden Gopher to play in four NCAA Championships.
Send your questions now using the form below, and then join Janel right here on Thursday at 4 p.m ET!
The ShowGirl (3:47 PM)
Welcome to The Show! A top prospect in this Saturday's WNBA Draft is Minnesota's Janel McCarville. Janel will be stopping by to take your questions in a few minutes. Send in those questions now then join the Golden Gopher right here for the answers!
The ShowGirl (4:13 PM)
I got her! Here we go?
Janel McCarville (4:15 PM)
First off, thanks for joining me in this chat room. It's a great honor to be here ... hopefully we get all of your questions answered!
Janel, your awesome. What has been your best memory from this past season. Also, I hear your a great poker player. Have youever thought about going to Vegas and trying your hand in poker out there?
Janel McCarville (4:17 PM)
The best memory I have of this year would be making to the Big-10 Championship ... playing MichState even tough we lost. That's something we have never accomplished here at the U of Minn. .... AAnd, I would love to go to Vegas BUT basketball is my top priority right now. So, when I get old and I can't play ball anymore, I'll love to head out to Vegas for a little R and R.
Hi Janel, I'm 15 and you are my favorite player to watch. Do you have a nickname?
Janel McCarville (4:18 PM)
Yes, my nickname is Shaq. Also, some of my other friends from back home call me Jan and a lot of my teammates also call me Juan -- which was given to me by Whalen.
Hey Janel ... Have you ever been to Charlotte?
Janel McCarville (4:19 PM)
No I have not ever been to Charlotte but I have been to Fayettevill. My sister's ex-husband was stationed at Ft. Bragg, so I have spent some time there ... but never Charlotte.
Rose (Memphis TN)
Janel what did you think of Taurasi's comments about you playing in Phoenix? Especially the part about you needing a tan!?
Janel McCarville (4:21 PM)
Haha! First of all, I think I look good with the skin color I have. Second, it is an honor to have Diana Taurasi want to play with me and I would love to play with her ... but I'm not going to get my expectations up, there's a lot that can happen. Where ever I go I will be playing with great players.
Janel McCarville (4:21 PM)
P.S. Diana -- we don't have any sun in Minnesota! I look like everybody else!
David Winkelman (Waukesha, WI)
What's has it been like becoming a national figure after coming from a small Wisconsin town?
Janel McCarville (4:23 PM)
It's interesting coming from such a small town where everybody knows you, to going to a big town where nobody knows you at first. As I became successful and garnered more attention and respect, it's been great to be a role model for kids and fans. It's definitely unexpected and it's an honor to have people looking up to me and immitating me in their driveways.
Beth (Washington, DC)
How difficult do you think it will be to compete at 6'2" with some of the larger posts in the WNBA? In the past we've seen undersized posts, Stacy Stephens of Texas, for example, struggle because of their size. Thanks!
Janel McCarville (4:25 PM)
I think that will definitely make me work harder, but I'll be able to use my strength and quickness to my advantage, but, you can't compete with height ... I will do my best night in and night out to defend my assignment.
Great job at Minnesota, Janel. YOu were a lot of fun to watch. Random question for you -- what kind of music do you listen to? Thanks and good luck!
Janel McCarville (4:26 PM)
Thank you, Jackie. And I listen to a lot of rap -- my selection is very broad -- mostly rap, some country, old western, too. BUT, for games, it's anything fast with a good beat.
Elise from Baxter, Minnesota
Congrats on a great career with the Gophers! It was a thrill to watch you play. Would you like to be drafted by a team in the Midwest so it would be easier for your family to see you play and how is your mother's health?
Janel McCarville (4:27 PM)
I would love to play in the MidWest so my family could make a lot of the games -- family is very important to me so that would be awesome -- if not, they'll still make the trip anywhere to see me play. As for my mom, she is doing well, she will be right by my side in New York this weekend. She appreciates all the concern.
Amanda (Roanoke, VA)
Hey Janel!!! I know this is probably a bad thing to say down here in VA but I loved that pick you set in the NCAA game against UVA!! What do you say to people who think that was a dirty play or that you're a dirty player? I just think you're tough and play hard and I love it!
Janel McCarville (4:30 PM)
Thank you very much, Amanda. It's not meant to be a dirty play, at all. It's basically an opportunity to free up our point guards. In that one instance, I think she had four easy points prior to that and I had the chance to let her know that someone was there on defense and she can't be up in our point guards shorts. It was just meant to send a message and make her think twice about running that again.
Janel McCarville (4:30 PM)
Thank you very much, Amanda. It's not meant to be a dirty play, at all. It's basically an opportunity to free up our point guards. In that one instance, I think she had four easy points prior to that and I had the chance to let her know that someone was there on defense and she can't be up in our point guards' shorts. It was just meant to send a message and make her think twice about running that again.
Hey Shaq, did you get your luggage alright in Indy? Anyway, if you could choose a team to play for, who would you pick? You rock, thanks for a terrific 4 years here in Minnesota, we'll miss you. Good luck in the WNBA.
Janel McCarville (4:32 PM)
Yes, Steph. I finally got it! THey delivered it to the hotel, thanks for waiting with me -- I hope the picture turned out. It's hard to say which team I would like to play for b/c I don't want to degrade any team by implying I don't want to play for them. I would be happy playing for any team b/c I love basketball. No matter what team I go to I'll be happy.
Alison (Sheboygan, WI)
Hi Janel, What was it like going through your senior year with all the expectation, pressure, praise by some, and criticism by others? Did it help your game and mindset in the long run? You were so much fun to watch over the years and I cannot wait to see you progress even further! Good Luck!
Janel McCarville (4:34 PM)
Thank you for your support Alison. As for expectations, I think expectations signals belief. If people have expectations, I think it means you are capable and people believe in you and it's motivation to do better and meet those expectations. As for outside criticism -- I don't listen to it all that much -- as long as my coaches, teammates and family have faith in me, I'll be fine.
I would like to know if you think your going to be the top draft pick? How cool would that be.
Janel McCarville (4:36 PM)
It would be an honor to be the No. 1 pick, but if I'm not, I'll obviously openly accept where I am placed. Any chance to play professional basketball -- regardless of if I'm the No. 1 pick or the No. 10 pick -- I'll be very excited about it.
Emily (Minneapolis, MN)
Hey Janel! What are the biggest perks of being Janel McCarville and playing big time basketball? Other than winning and excused absense from class. Good Luck this year and I wish your mom and the rest of your family the best.
Janel McCarville (4:37 PM)
I'd say the recognition -- after big games AND losses -- I get a lot of contratulatory support. As for the absenses, we have to make every single piece of work up. We are not excused that easily, Emily! Academics is a priority for us.
Carter (Louisville, KY)
Hi Janel, Are you looking forward to playing against Lindsay Whalen sometime this year? I am sure she has already began to talk some smack about that matchup, but has Whalen given you any advice about the draft and the season?
Janel McCarville (4:39 PM)
Lindsey has definitely given me some good advice. Little tidbits about what do do and what not to do. We have trash-talked a little bit already, but all in good fun. I look forward to the matchups ... and hopefully, one day when we are both old ladies, we'll get traded to the same team!
Jonathan, Talking Rock Georgia
Hi Janel, besides your obvious passing skills, what other assets will you bring to whatever team drafts you and is there any particular team you would wish to play for. I think Indian would be a great fit for you because the 1-2 punch between yourself and Tamika Catchings would be really tough to defend.
Janel McCarville (4:40 PM)
I wouldn't mind No. 2 Indiana at all. I'll bring my work ethic and rebounding skills to any team I am drafted to. To me, rebounding is as important as scoring.
Lindsey (Plymouth, MN)
Janel, I would like to thank you for the most incredible, exciting and thrilling 4 years of watching any sport I?ve watched over the course of my life (so far)!! But I will definitely watch you in the WNBA. It is my 16th birthday tomorrow, and talking to you will, by far, will the most exciting part of the day. You are and excellent basketball player and the best post player I have ever seen in my life!! You and all of the Gophs have really encouraged me, and I know many other people, to try your hardest everyday and if you have a bad day to not get down on yourself! You also had great charisma on the court with your teammates and fans! Anyways, enough on how awesome you are on the court, I have a question for you. Do you have any opinion on the salary difference between the WNBA and NBA? Well, I want to thank you again for the awesome 4 seasons and like to also thank you for reading this! One of your fans from MINNESOTA, Lindsey
Janel McCarville (4:43 PM)
Happy Birthday, Lindsey -- I hope it's a good one. I think that with time, women's contracts will become bigger -- never close to the men's high flying entertainment contracts. But, I still thinks the women's game is team-oriented rather than the one-on-one acrobatic individual dunk show of the men's game -- not to dis the men's game AT ALL, b/c I love it. But, as the fan base of women's basketball grows, I think the salaries will grow accordingly, too.
Tanya: (Minneapolis, MN)
Janel, congratulations on your career at Minnesota and your current position as a top prospect in the 2005 WNBA draft. You've had the opportunity to play with and against many great players, but, as you reflect on the upcoming draft and knowing that you will soon be part of a new team and have new teammates, what I am curious about is what the characteristics of ideal team or teammate are for you. In addition, is there any one current WNBA player that you've always dreamed of playing with? Good luck in this coming year. We'll miss your energy on the floor and your wit on and off the court here at Minnesota!
Janel McCarville (4:48 PM)
There's not really ONE player I've dreamed of playing with, the opportunity to play with ANY of them is a dream come true. Something that makes a great team and teammate to me is that you have fun with them. ... You trust them, and they trust you. Getting along and having fun is so important. That is really the root of our success here at Minnesota -- we were best friends! That trust that you have when you get along goes a long way. That really carried us, we have a blast.
Janel McCarville (4:49 PM)
Alright everybody, that's all the time we have for today. Thanks so much for joining me. I really appreciate your questions and support and your concern. Wish me luck in the WNBA! I hope we can do this again soon! Thanks!
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