During the NCAA women’s basketball tournament in 2010, San Diego State’s top-ranked women’s basketball team made it to the “Sweet 16” – the first time an SDSU basketball squad (men’s or women’s) advanced that far in an NCAA Division I tournament.
Unfortunately, the women were not able to advance to the “Elite Eight” with a loss to Duke, 58 – 66.
On Duke’s team was 5’ 8” back-up guard, Chelsea Hopkins. She didn’t know it at the time, but within months, she would leave Duke and head to SDSU where the Las Vegas native could be nearer to her family. “I suffered through two knee surgeries and wasn’t able to pursue my goals from an athletic or academic standpoint at Duke,” said Hopkins, who was personally recruited by SDSU business dean Gail Naughton. “SDSU had everything I was looking for when I made my decision to transfer. Not to mention, SDSU is close to home. I love the fact that my family will be able to witness and take part in my success here as a student athlete.”
Hopkins, a junior and pre-marketing major, is currently complying with NCAA rules by sitting out for one season, but she travels and works out with the team. “I practice every day, however, I do not suit up for games,” said Hopkins. “I’m usually on the bench wearing a sweat suit and sneakers so I can help the team warm up.”
Even with her busy athletic schedule, Hopkins is focused on her academic career and after-graduation plans. “I will graduate from SDSU in 2012 and, hopefully, complete my master’s degree after that,” she said. “I’ve always been interested in business, but I didn’t have the opportunity to pursue a business degree at Duke because it wasn’t offered to undergraduates. I was well aware of SDSU’s business program and the prestige that it holds. I knew I wanted to be a part of it.”
First, however, Hopkins has goals for herself and her Aztec teammates: “Our team is headed in a very positive direction and we have a chance to make history. I’m looking forward to winning a conference championship and hanging some more banners.”