Zada Williams calls it a career at Florida

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Zada Williams calls it a career at Florida

Samantha Harrison // Alligator Contributor It was the spring of 2017. Zada Williams had just left the University of Miami’s basketball program a few months prior when the season concluded. Now, with the intent to transfer, she was in the upstairs conference room at the University of Florida’s basketball complex to meet with Florida coach Cam Newbauer. During the meeting, there was an obvious player-coach connection that was more than the basketball. It was supposed to be about hoops, but that was just the surface of what the conversation meant. It meant a new start. But not just for Zada, for a program and a coach. And Newbauer, brand new to UF himself at the time, knew it. He knew it with less than a full half of basketball. “We were that strongly convicted of seeing 16 minutes of game film from her sophomore year,” Newbauer said. “I told her ‘We are convinced with what we’ve seen on film, that you can be an impact player for our program.’” Then? Tears. Tears and a commitment to a new school. After spending two seasons at Miami and only playing a combined 35 games for the Hurricanes, she decided to leave Coral Gables after the 2016-17 season. She then joined Newbauer, who had just left Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, for UF. Three years later, her redshirt senior season is complete. With a likely trip to the NIT taken from the Gators by the concerns surrounding COVID-19, Williams did not know the loss against No. 7 LSU in the SEC tournament would be her final game. Still, the starting forward was instrumental in Florida’s resurgent team this past year. The 2019-20 squad finished 15-15 (6-10 SEC). That is a seven-win improvement from the 2018-19 team that went 8-23 (3-13 SEC). What […]

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