By making a verbal commitment to play basketball for the University of Iowa, Claire Till is joining her second family.
Till, a 6-foot senior-to-be at Dubuque Wahlert High School, committed to Iowa on the spot after being offered a scholarship Saturday night by Iowa coach Lisa Bluder.
“I love coach Bluder,” Till said. “I’ve been around her since I could walk probably. She’s kind of like a second mother to me.”
Till is the daughter of Shelley Till, who is entering her seventh season as a radio color analyst for the Iowa women’s basketball team.
“She is my coach 24/7 pretty much,” Claire said of her mother, who played basketball at Drake with current Iowa assistant coaches Jan Jensen and Jenni Fitzgerald. “She taught me everything I know.”
Claire said her decision to attend Iowa was a no-brainer after she was offered the scholarship.
“Obviously, she’s been around Iowa women’s basketball since she was a little girl,” Shelley Till said. “So she just feels like she’s part of that family.”
Claire is expected to sign a letter of intent in November and will join the Iowa team for the 2012-13 season.
Shelley Till is eager to broadcast Iowa games with her daughter playing.
“I think it’ll be different, but I’m totally looking forward to it,” Shelley said. “I mean what a better way to watch your kid play then sit up there and be able to call the games.
“Obviously, you’ve got to remain somewhat unbiased.”
Shelley Till said she’ll try to handle it the same way Mac McCausland did when he helped broadcast Iowa games on television while his son, Kent McCausland, played for the Hawkeyes from 1996-99.
“It’s definitely going to be an interesting story,” Shelley said.
Claire Till led Wahlert in scoring as a junior last season with a 12.7 per-game average.
She also averaged 6.0 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 2.3 steals per game, all of which were team highs.
The small forward picked Iowa over Wisconsin, Wisconsin-Green Bay, Drake, Northern Iowa, Illinois State and Missouri.
“It feels great to get it over with and be stress free for a little while,” Claire said.
Claire Till is the fourth member of the 2012 high school senior class to commit to Iowa and the first from instate high school. The others are 6-4 center Nicole Smith from Rockton, Illinois and Minnesota natives Kali Peschel, a 6-0 guard from Sauk Centre, and Kayla Timmerman., a 6-3 center from Wayzata.
Category: Iowa Hawkeyes women's basketball