Sports

Le Grand's Hansen may have options -- just not on Signing Day

Le Grand's Jennifer Hansen leads her team in points, rebounds, assists and steals, but the reigning All-Area Player of the Year is a relative unknown outside the southern half of the Sac-Joaquin Section.
Le Grand's Jennifer Hansen leads her team in points, rebounds, assists and steals, but the reigning All-Area Player of the Year is a relative unknown outside the southern half of the Sac-Joaquin Section.

LE GRAND -- Signing Day will come and go with little fanfare for the area's top girls basketball player.

And for Jennifer Hansen, that's OK.

The Le Grand senior point guard understands the reality of her recruitment.

Though she leads the team in points, rebounds, assists and steals, the reigning All-Area Player of the Year is a relative unknown outside the southern half of the Sac-Joaquin Section.

The reason is two-fold.

One, Hansen waited too long to establish her name with regional scouts.

And two, she plays in the Southern League, a small-school league with very little notoriety.

The result: Zero scholarship offers.

"I haven't been offered anything yet," Hansen said. "It's a little disappointing, but I know it's very competitive and you have to get your name out.

"Being that I'm from a small school and a small league, it's not really that surprising that colleges haven't heard of me."

That's not exactly true.

For as good as Hansen has been on the court, her performance in the classroom may open doors that basketball simply cannot.

Think Ivy League.

East and west.

Hansen carries a 4.1 GPA and is on track to become the school's valedictorian. She had an interview with Harvard on Tuesday, and is applying to Stanford and Cal, too.

"She can write her own ticket," Le Grand coach Danny Crosby said. "She gets letters every day from different universities.

"She wants to go to Stanford, get a good degree and try to walk-on. Same with Harvard. If nothing comes down the pipeline, she said she's going to walk-on where ever she goes."

Hansen could be a steal.

The do-it-all senior is a triple-double waiting to happen. Hansen is averaging 19.8 points, 9.8 rebounds and 6.2 assists per game for the Southern League leaders.

Though the recruiting process has been slow moving, Crosby said a few small schools have shown mild interest.

Cal Poly, Holy Names and Oregon Institute of Technology have all contacted Crosby.

"It's like I was telling (coach Matt Greenleaf) at Oregon IT, with the numbers she's putting up up, she's going to be a steal," Crosby said. "She has the work ethic, the drive and court awareness. She has all the intangibles."

The question remains: If a scholarship offer surfaces, will Hansen choose athletics over academics?

"Right now, I would probably lean toward academics," Hansen said. "I don't see myself making a career out of basketball.

"Even at a school like Stanford, which I have a minimal chance of playing for, I think it would be a fun experience.

"I wouldn't mind being the girl on the bench with the warm-up jersey that never comes off."

  Comments