Feb. 20, 2008
By Peter Noonan
Florida State Sports Information
Florida State’s Angel Gray is a very talented basketball player. Out of high school she had garnered Player of the Year awards in her 2004-05 season by the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Along with Player of the Year, she was a three-time Most Valuable Player honor recipient and was her basketball team’s captain all four years of high school. After high school, the next step she wanted to take was playing in the nation’s top basketball league, the Atlantic Coast Conference, and that led her to Florida State and head coach Sue Semrau.
Last year was Gray’s freshman year and it did not go according to plan. She suffered a torn ACL in her right knee and was lost for the season just shortly after Christmas. “When it happened I said it’s okay I am going to play anyway. When they told me it was torn, I cried for a few minutes, but said it’s okay I can work on things to prepare me for the ACC play.”
In her short 13-game freshman season, Gray averaged 18 minutes a game, scoring an average of three points per game and grabbing two point three rebounds as well. What was terrible about her ACL tear was that it came when Gray was beginning to see increased playing time off the bench. Some career highs include 27 minutes versus Fairfield, pulling down five rebounds versus in-state rival Florida and three times scoring six points. Even though she was injured, Gray did not stop her hard work and desire to be on the court for the Seminoles. After doctors told her she would be done for last season, Gray was counting the days until she could get back on the floor with her teammates for the start of fall practice.
Her determination to return to the court is very comparable to that of Kobe Bryant. Of Bryant, Gray says, “I love Kobe Bryant, he is unstoppable and his determination is just perfect.” Another NBA star athlete she admires is Steve Nash as well as who she calls the Steve Nash of the WNBA, Cappie Pondexter of the Phoenix Mercury, who also happens to be a guard.
Gray is a very engaging and pleasant young woman who loves God, her family, and modern technology. When asked what she brings on road trips, two of the three items were technology based: her cell phone, which she declares a “necessary necessity” and her I-pod with school work being the third item.
Outside of basketball, Gray enjoys shopping, sleeping, dancing, and getting involved in community service. Gray talked about how her family made it a point to help others this Christmas. While back at home in Stone Mountain, Ga., Gray, her mother, sister and brothers donated gifts to an adopted family. “She took us [Angel’s mom] with her to see the family on Christmas open the presents and to see the look on the parent’s faces and kid’s faces to see how much they enjoyed it. It has really changed my attitude on material things,” exclaimed Gray.
Once her basketball career is over, Gray has aspirations of becoming a television sports reporter and currently hosts a segment on Coach Semrau’s show called “Hot Seat”. She would eventually like to be an analyst for women’s basketball and currently looks up to Carol Lawson because of her knowledge and ability to break down the game. She does not have a catch phrase yet, but maybe “lights, camera, Angel” will work out for her.
This hard-working, family-oriented and very spirited individual is someone to watch out for in the future. Gray is a very proud Seminole and truly loves Florida State and the people she comes in contact with here at FSU. Ever since her first visit to the campus she says this was the place for her. “When I came on my visit, I know it’s a cliché, but I could just feel it. The players were great as well as the coaches too. Even when I was on the phone, I felt like I was talking to a friend. There is just a great team unity and we are so close, like sisters I really appreciate that,” says Gray. She especially loves the band she says they are number one in the land so shouts out to them.