Passing the Torch

Jose Garcia, Sports Writer

By: Jose Garcia | Sports Writer

The Texas A&M University-Commerce’s women’s basketball team will start the 2019-2020 campaign without their former star Princess Davis but the team has added many new players to its roster and one could be the next star at A&M-Commerce.

Davis is a former student-athlete who played for Texas A&M University-Commerce’s women’s basketball team, widely noted as the one of the team’s star players during her tenure. During her time with the organization, Davis secured an enormous amount of accomplishments, such as becoming the all-time minutes leader in Lions basketball history, became the 2014-15 LSC Freshman of the Year, and was a 2017-18 All-American just to name a few.

After five outstanding years, Davis played her last season at A&M-Commerce in the 2018-2019 campaign. Her departure is a major hit for the team. Leaving the squad without a notable key leader, someone who the team could consecutively rely on, or who the lineup could conceivably revolve around. Consequently, the question arises, who can be capable of replacing the talents of  Davis?

Dyani Robinson could be that player to be the next star at A&M-Commerce. Robinson is a freshman, reigning from Houston, Texas and graduate of Langham Creek High School. During her four year career playing for the girls varsity basketball team as the starting shooting guard, Robinson averaged 16.7 points, 4.4 rebounds and an impressive 3.7 steals per game.

Over time Robinson has shown her dedication to the game of basketball, showing incredible improvement since her rookie year. Ultimately, her best season was her senior year, where she was added into the First Team All-District 14-6A, was apart of the TABC Girls All-Region Class 6A Region 2 team, became a greater Houston All-Star and most importantly was named the District 14-6A Girls’ Basketball MVP.

Robinson averaged a career-high in both points and rebounds per game, 20.4 and 5.3 respectively. Additionally, she continued to be a beast on the defensive end, averaging a staggering 4.1 steals per game by the end of the season. Suitably, Robinson was recruited by A&M-Commerce and will be one of the new faces on the team, predicted to become one of the team’s next stars.

Under the guidance of A&M-Commerce’s Head Coach, Jason Burton and the rest of the staff, Davis herself feels Robinson is destined for greatness. “He put me in a position early in my career as a freshman to lead the team and be the coach on the floor,” Davis said when asked about how Coach Burton could help in Robinson’s development. “A&M-Commerce WBB staff is the best at what they do. They will work with [Dyani Robinson] and put her in a position to lead also. Every day will be a new opportunity for her to get better and lead.”

Nevertheless, will Robinson succeed in becoming the leader that Davis was for her team? Will she effortlessly be able to lead the charge for her brand new team with assertiveness and become the player Davis could “pass the torch” to?

There will undoubtedly be a ton of speculation from fans and many others determining if Robinson will be able to prosper at the collegiate level and curious to know if she’ll be able to handle the tremendous amounts of pressure in a tough conference.

Robinson will have some exceptionally big shoes to fill, but Davis feels excessively hopeful for her. “I think Dyani is good and will be really good for Commerce,” Princess said. “I am confident that she’s in the best position to elevate her game and become something special. She’s young and talented. I can’t wait to see what she [will] do this upcoming season.”

The 2019-20 season is set to start on Nov. 8, where the team will face off against Metro State with Robinson expected to come off the bench. Furthermore, Robinson will be wearing Davis’ #12 jersey, a coincidental allude that this is her destiny. Regardless of the outcome of this first match-up, the future looks immensely bright for A&M-Commerce’s women’s basketball team, with the addition of Robinson to the roster.