by Daniel Fappiano
Brianna Jacobs has spent four years with the Central Connecticut women’s basketball team. Every year, she has come in and improved her game on the court, and as a leader. She appeared in 17 games as a freshman, 18 as a sophomore and then 28 as a junior. Going into her senior season, she was given the honor of being one of the team’s captains.
Unfortunately for Jacobs, her hard work hit a major speedbump during the Blue Devils’ Jan. 20 game against St. Francis (BKN). After checking in late during the first quarter, Jacobs went down with a leg injury and had to be helped off the court. The injury ended her season and collegiate career.
However, Jacobs still takes her role as a captain seriously. She understands that while she can’t be on the court with her team, she can still help lead, a role she doesn’t take for granted.
“Being a captain is a lot more than you would expect it to be, it’s not always good times especially with our struggles this season,” Jacobs said. “It was a challenge that I was willing to take on and it helped me grow as a person.”
Despite her injury, Jacobs still cherishes the opportunity she had to be a Blue Devil for four years.
“It definitely had its ups and downs, but if I could do it all again, I would,” Jacobs said. “It’s really bittersweet now that I’m reaching the end, I’ve made it so far. There were definitely a lot of milestones that I had to reach and a lot of mountains I had to climb, but I’m just really glad I was able to get through it all.”
Prior to going down with her injury, Jacobs was having her best season to date. In 17 games, including seven starts, the 5-foot-9-inch forward averaged 4.1 points and 2.8 rebounds over 13.1 minutes a game. Jacobs says she’s proud that when she was on the floor, she was able to help her team compete during her senior season.
“I’m proud of the fact that this year, despite my injury, I was able to get on the floor a lot more and actually make big impacts in the game,” Jacobs said. “I was able to become a valuable player, coming in as a freshman it’s hard to work your way up but I feel like I definitely improved every year and those were big milestones for me.”
After spending four years with Jacobs and watching her grow as a player and a person, Head coach Beryl Piper had nothing but praise for her senior captain.
“Bri has been one of those kids through times where she didn’t play a whole lot. She just has that upbeat personality, she has that infectious smile that you love to have on the team and she had that leadership,” Piper said. “She’s just such a great kid. We’re going to miss her personality, we’re going to miss who she is as a person, we’re going to miss how she handles her teammates in tough situations.”
Although Jacobs is walking away from the collegiate ranks, she says she plans to stay involved in basketball.
“I definitely want to keep playing basketball. I’ll probably get involved in intramural sports and maybe even coaching little kids,” Jacobs said. “Hopefully, I can inspire them because having the college experience, I can help them learn from that.”
While Jacobs might have suffered an unfortunate injury, she didn’t allow it to ruin her attitude. She continues to help lead her team be the best they can be. She’s beloved by her coaches and teammates and is a true example of what hard work can get you.