Share Your Story: Anne Thorius
It was with great anticipation I arrived in Ann Arbor for my freshman season back in 1997. I had expectations about all the things I was going to be involved in: the team and program, the campus, the classes and the American culture. Thinking back on those four amazing years, my experiences in relation to basketball were very unique and memorable. Coming from Denmark, a small basketball nation, the surroundings where ever we went were pretty much phenomenal.
The experience of the coaching staff, the team, the resources during practices and games, and other basketball related events were overwhelming. Four coaches to a team is not something you see everyday in Europe. Add the strength and conditioning coach, a trainer and a student trainer - those are very rare, except for the professional teams in Europe.
Although it was fantastic to travel to Texas, Florida and Hawaii, there is no doubt that the conference games are the most memorable. Playing against national champions, Final Four participants, All-Americans and future European Euroleague standouts indicates the level of competition. The most memorable experiences with the team were the improvement throughout my four years. Each year we became a better team and set our goals higher. The team certainly did improve and had four very successful seasons. I would have never expected to participate in the NCAA Tournament three times and the WNIT once! My favorite experience was beating Purdue, then the defending national champions on national TV.
But life wasn't only basketball. Ann Arbor set a fantastic scene for a college town - the cozy downtown, the amazing campus buildings, the student life and the "circus" that comes to town for all of the football games. The four years were filled with experiences that I often revisit in my memories and realize how big an impact they have had on my life and the person I am today. GO BLUE!