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Choice not Chance: Rules For Building a Fierce Competitor by Joanne P. McCallie

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Chapter 11

Everybody Has to Be Challenged to See How Good They Can Become

Challenges and Progress at Michigan State

Unfortunately, most people see a team’s success (or failure) solely in terms of wins and losses. Using these parameters, I had a disappointing second year at Michigan State.

However, we managed to play well enough to get an invitation to the WNIT Tournament. Even though it was not as coveted as a spot in the NCAA Tournament, I still viewed it as a sign that we were making progress. It also allowed us to keep practicing and playing games.

A victory over DePaul in the first round moved us into the second round at Illinois, where we won again. We hosted Alabama in the quarterfinals and won, which sent us to Oregon for the semifinal game against the Ducks, where, unfortunately, we lost. Though it’s always disappointing to lose your final game of the year, I was pleased with how far we had come, and was already excited about our prospects for the 2002–2003 season.

It was a happy time in our personal lives. John had been hired as a full-time professor in the Economics Department and was enjoying his work. The kids were growing up and making friends. We lived in a great house in a friendly neighborhood and had become close to many people. I had once again developed friendships with some older women whom I saw as my unofficial advisers club. These people helped me through more tough situations than they will ever know.

One of my greatest sources of sadness about being at ...

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