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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
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Injured, not ended: Jordan Jones returns to the courts

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Photo by File

 

After tearing her ACL, there were times Texas A&M senior point guard Jordan Jones didn’t think she would ever return to be the player who had been named the SEC Defensive Player of the Year in each of the past two seasons. However, under the direction of  a physical therapist, Jones made it back and was ready for 2016 preseason practice and the season opener.
“After surgery, you’re not going to be 100 percent that next year, but you can be smarter,” Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair said. “You can cut angles off, you can be more verbal, you can do a lot of things better. But right now, she’s just about as quick as she was before she got hurt. She’s playing very well.”
Jone’s injury happened during the game against Missouri Feb. 26, 2015. Teammate Courtney Walker had just made a basket and the Aggies were gaining momentum. Jones, seeing the opportunity to strike, tried to steal the ball from the Missouri player she was guarding.
“She had the ball and I felt like I could take it away from her,” Jones said. “She put it in front of me so I lunged for it, then she went behind the back and I turned my body and my leg stayed planted in the ground. But my body had left so all my weight just shifted into my knee and it gave out on me.”
The result was a torn ACL that forced her to miss the rest of the season. Without her, the Aggies went on to lose four of their five games and were eliminated from the NCAA tournament in the first round.
It was hard on Jones not being able to be on the court with her teammates, and Blair was left without his star point guard.
“I found out real quick that she was more valuable than my coaching was,” Blair said.
Blair has coached a plethora of talented players in his Hall of Fame career. He said he knows that having a talented and trustworthy court general is critical to the success of the team, and Jones fills that role.
“She’s right there with all of them,” Blair said of where Jones ranks among the successful point guards he has coached.
Blair has given the 5-foot-6 senior the reins this year, trusting her to make good decisions on the court and to come to him when she sees something that might work. The reason he has so much confidence in his fourth-year point guard is because of her tremendous basketball IQ. Blair gives Jones the freedom to make changes when she sees fit, and, he said “she is right nine times out of ten.”
Although Jones is now one of the premiere players for women’s basketball, she played sparingly as a true freshman, but she soaked up as much knowledge as possible from then-senior point guard Adrienne Pratcher and enjoyed the Aggies’ run to winning the SEC championship.
In her sophomore year, things started to go well on the hardwood for Jones. She led the SEC in assists, ranked third in steals and was named the SEC Co-Defensive Player of the Year. Jones takes the most pride in her defense, but she is also a terrific passer and can score points when she needs to as well.
Jones earned her degree from Texas A&M in December and is now in graduate school studying sports management. Her ultimate goal, though, is to go to law school after her basketball career ends and become a lawyer. Blair said that Jones isn’t the type of person who needs basketball in her life to be happy.
“I wouldn’t want to face her in the courtroom,” he said. “She can articulate pretty well and get her point across.”
However, Jones has a few things to check off the list before she crosses that bridge. She has dished out more than five assists per game while serving as one of the team’s primary leaders, and she has high aspirations for A&M the rest of the way.
“Go undefeated at home, win the SEC tournament and then try to make a deep run in the postseason tournament,” Jones said with confidence about her goals for the remainder of the season.

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