Albright-Dieterle speaks out at luncheon

By David Lance

NIU women’s basketball head coach Jane Albright-Dieterle did everything coaches are supposed to do at their teams’ preseason media luncheon, and then some.

At the Chick Evans Field House Wednesday, she talked about her players individually, team expectations and then fielded questions from the press.

But first, Albright-Dieterle said a few words about Monday’s issue of The Northern Star.

“I guess there’s kind of a controversy on campus now with the student-fund thing,” Albright-Dieterle said.

“The media is very influential, Albright-Dieterle said. “A message I’d like for you to help us portray to our student body and to the people in DeKalb is we very much appreciate the money that you’ve spent on us. The part of the student fees that we are getting we are very, very thankful for that.

“(Monday) in The Northern Star there was a (column) in the editorial page … it was basically, ‘Why do we have athletics?’—one of those we can’t figure out why we’re spending all this money on these people.

“It was a very lengthy (column) and I read it. I heard all the person’s arguments. I thought it was really strange because in the same piece of paper, in the left hand corner, there was an article about Magic Johnson (former Los Angeles Laker). If you think back … he was a student/athlete at Michigan State University.

“Someone gave him an opportunity to compete. He traveled around the country. He was what these young ladies in here (her team) are. I hope you will bear with us and just be excited with what we’re trying to do here with our student/athletes. We’re really happy and very proud that we have attracted these student/athletes in here.”

Albright-Dieterle is trying to establish her team as a national power. Her team enters the season ranked No. 40 in the 1991 NCAA Basketball Preview.

“We’re going to compete this year,” Albright-Dieterle said. “We want to be the best team in the state. We want to be the best team in the (North Star) Conference. Our first goal should be to let no other North Star Conference team beat us.

“We play an exciting brand of basketball. I think you’re going to see the most exciting team we’ve ever put on the floor.

“They’re going to be fun.