By Thomas Sellers Jr.
Why four chairs? Those seats represented her final four college choices. As her teammates and sister took their place in the chairs with each college represented, Crawford was about to let the world know her choice.
The Hometown Newspaper’s Facebook Live feed illustrated the final choices were the University of Miami, Ole Miss, Mississippi State and Alabama. Crawford requested all four girls to stand and she would hug the one who was wearing her college selection. The embrace went around her teammate Kennisha Mason wearing the University of Alabama ball cap.
“That was the first offer I had,” Crawford said. “Coach Curry checked on me during the season, offseason. She was at all of my AAU games. She made sure she saw me even when she had to leave early.
“I love there campus,” she added. “It wasn’t just one coach texting me. Even the girls on the team were texting me and checking on me to see how I was doing. I always had conversations with them. It just feels like home. It’s comfortable down there. I see myself fitting in.”
Alabama Head Coach Kristy Curry had her targets set on the talented Crawford for years. Then additional schools like Duke, Harvard, Purdue, Memphis, Louisville, Florida, Kansas State, Penn State, St. John’s and all the other Southeastern Conference schools came calling.
But Curry and her staff were able to land Crawford’s commitment. And the Munford Lady Cougar will make it official on National Signing Day this November.
The Alabama Crimson Tide play in the SEC and in the Coleman Coliseum in Tuscaloosa. Crawford has one more year to play in the District 13-3A in Tennessee.
She was All-Tournament and All-District all three years. She was named Region 7-3A MVP this past season. She has more than 1,200 points and 800 rebounds in her career. Crawford is ranked in the ESPN 100 at 81.
Crawford along side teammates like De’Asha Banks, Shania Johnson and Johnna Jones helped lead the Lady Cougars of Steve Poindexter to the 2016 District 13-3A Tournament title and the 2017 Region 7-3A Tournament crown.
“I always play with a chip on my shoulder because I’ve always been doubted,” Crawford acknowledged. “That’s why I play so hard. For all those who said I couldn’t make it, look where I am at now.
“It’s a blessing,” she continued. “The coaches saw it. But people and society doubted me and I’m proving them wrong.”
Now with her college choice public, Crawford is ready to put all distraction aside heading into her senior campaign. She wants to prove the public wrong one more time with experts picking Munford to drop from the top with the graduation of Banks, Johnson and Jones.
“That’s when you’ve got to take on leadership and that’s what prepares you for college,” she said. “If I get down they’ll be down. I have to be positive for my teammates. I have to get up and stay up. I have to be on top of my game at all times.
“I love my family,” Crawford concluded. “Everybody here is family. They always show me love. If I need anything, I know they’re going to be there. Dr. Fee she’s there. Mom, Dad are always there. Johnna, Nisha, they’re always there for me. I don’t have to question anybody because I know they’ll be there for me.”