If anybody knows LaMetria Dunn, it’s Curtis Jones.
Jones is longtime Memphis-area AAU basketball coach who was afforded the opportunity of coaching Dunn from the time she entered sixth grade until she graduated from Fairley High School.
On Wednesday, or approximately two months removed from Dunn having completed her junior season at Fisk University in Nashville, Jones was asked to assess the overall progress of his former player.
“There are no words to express how pleased and impressed I am with her growth on and off the court,” Jones told Sports Journalist Andre Johnson. “In my 15 years of coaching, I have the most personal relationship with her that goes beyond basketball. LaMetria is like my 3rd daughter.”
To her credit, the 22-year-old Dunn has given her former coach and her mother, Tondelayo Williams, something about which to be proud.
For starters, Dunn, a 5-foot-4, 140-pound point guard, enjoyed a favorable tenure at Dyersburg State Community College prior to extending her collegiate basketball career at Fisk.
To her credit, she showed no signs of a letdown this past season for the NAIA member Lady Bulldogs, having emerged as a key contributor for a Fisk team that ended the season with an 11-18 mark.
Although the Lady Bulldogs failed to manufacture a winning campaign in 2015-16, Dunn admittedly still came away with more highs than lows in her first full season at the school.
“Progression (was the biggest thing),” Dunn said. “I’m more of threat as far as a scoring point guard. I worked out fairly every day, whether it was shooting and ball-handling or in the weight room getting some reps in.”
Dunn appeared in each of Fisk’s 29 games this past season and, as expected, she was often as good as advertised, having averaged better than six points per game while shooting nearly 50 percent from three-point range.
She finished in double figures twice as a junior, with her season-best of 13 points coming in a Philander Smith College of Arkansas.
Considering room for improvement is always an ambition, surely, amongst the things about which Dunn will be aiming to fine-tune is her ability to make free throws.
This past season, she shot an unsatisfactory 49.1 percent from the free throw line.
Even aside from her frequent offseason workouts, this summer will undoubtedly be a busy one for Dunn, who boasts lofty aspirations of becoming a medical doctor.
Dunn, who holds an Associates of Science Degree from Dyersburg State, is a Biology major at Fisk.
“I will spend my summer doing an internship and hopefully I’d be accepted into the graduate school of my choice,” Dunn said. “I will be doing a volunteer summer camps this summer at the McCabe Center in Nashville.”
By and large, although she has one more year of college eligibility remaining, Dunn doesn’t shy away from the notion that she’s already planning for life after basketball.
“On a billboard in Dyersburg, Tennessee, I’m being recognized as a student first and then an athlete,” Dunn explained.
Of course, atoning for last year’s losing record is a key goal also, she said.
“At the end of the game, when the clock strikes zero and the buzzer has sounded, my objective is to have a win, no matter how many I score or how many my teammates score,” Dunn said. “All I will do seek is the W and walk off the court knowing I gave everything I could.”
Something about she has doing since her AAU coach first discovered her immense skills back when she entered sixth grade.
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Andre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. A 2000 graduate of the University of Memphis School of Journalism, Johnson covers the NBA Southwest Division from Dallas, Texas. To reach Johnson, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.