Syracuse University retires jersey of UB Women’s Basketball Coach

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Buffalo head coach Felisha Legette-Jack speaks during a women’s NCAA college basketball tournament press conference in Albany, N.Y., Friday, March 23, 2018. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — UB Women’s Basketball Head Coach Felisha Legette-Jack made history at her alma mater, Syracuse University, by being the first women’s basketball player to have her jersey retired by the school.

A native of Syracuse, Legette-Jack made an impact for the Orange in her playing career on the court. Graduating from her hometown team in 1989, she left Syracuse as the program’s all-time leading scorer and rebounder. Her 1,526 points and 927 rebounds now rank fifth and third in Syracuse history.

“It’s an honor to represent Syracuse University. To be able to go there and graduate with two degrees and play the game at a high level and be able to win the Big East championships and things of that nature and play with the teammates that I have, that was the thrill of it all. That was the optimum moment for me, there was no need for me to receive anything else,” Felisha Legette-Jack said to media on Wednesday. “Then they say that I’m worthy enough to have my number retired, it rises it up and represents the city of Syracuse, the Syracuse Housing Authority, it will represent the Legette family, my Jack family, and it also will represent the student athletes that came and played with me that helped me become, and also the ones that came after us.”

The University at Buffalo Women’s Basketball team posted a video showing the moment Legette-Jack found out she was being honored.

Along with Legette-Jack, three other Syracuse women’s basketball players will have their jerseys as well. But according to Felisha, this honor is a long time coming, and should pave the way for other fantastic Orange players to earn the recognition.

“It means it’s the beginning of something very special that’s going to happen. Even though I’m the first, I shouldn’t have been. There’s so many others that have come before me. So many great players that came in and represented so much more than what I did, but I was the one that got the glory,” Legette-Jack said. “So I’m humbled by this, but I certainly have a great foundation to understand that I’m the first, but there’s so many others that came before me. As I get recognition, I certainly hope they know it was an honor to look up to them and be able to have a vision of what it’s supposed to look like and that they too will be recognized as we go.”

Evan Anstey is an Associated Press Award and Emmy-nominated digital producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here and follow him on Twitter.

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