Catherine Snow Knows Her Role

Written by: CEHD Communications Staff
Post date: January 28, 2011

The Texas A&M Women's Basketball program is definitely on a roll. The team just recorded its 11th straight win in a tough road win against Iowa State; bringing its' season record to 17-1 overall and 5-0 in conference play.

As the #5 team in the nation, the Aggies have been building quite a reputation and are chock-full of big names.

But even on a team that is receiving so much attention, there are still many stories to be told. One such story is that of Catherine Snow. The senior guard from Temple, Texas has had a much different journey than many of her teammates.

Although she lettered in four sports at Troy High School, she was not recruited to play at Texas A&M. So, when she arrived on campus for the first time as a freshman she arrived much like everyone else; as a student.

"Although I have always loved sports, I didn't originally come here as an athlete, I chose Texas A&M because it's one of the most respected schools in the country" Snow said. Instead she was content to spend her first year in college focusing on her academics and having fun playing intramural sports.

It was not until very early in her sophomore year that Catherine saw an ad In the Battalion newspaper announcing open tryouts for the Women's Basketball team.

Even though the odds of walking onto a Division I team (especially one as highly touted as Texas A&M's) are very low, she decided that her love of sports was worth the effort.

"[The tryouts] were kind of intense. They had us go through ball handling drills and shooting drills, but mainly they were interested in what kind of condition we were in," she said.

Fortunately she had kept in great condition working out on her own and competing in intramurals. She also mentions all of the experience she had gained lettering in so many sports while in high school. "I lettered in basketball, volleyball, softball, track & field & cross country," then she said with a big laugh "I pretty much played everything except for golf and tennis."

The experience and conditioning must have paid off, because not long after trying outs she received a call asking if she would like to be part of the team. Catherine Snow was the only walk-on player accepted.

Being the only walk-on player to join the team was an accomplishment in and of itself, but the intensity did not end there. For one, the practice squad that Catherine was placed on is comprised almost entirely of male athletes, known as the "Guys."

According to Charlee Miller, a staff member on the Women's Basketball team, "players that are placed on the practice squad are not only expected to compete against some of the best female athletes in the country for playing time, but they are also expected to compete against the guys for practice time."

According to Snow, being on the practice squad is not all that glamorous. "Once on the practice squad, it's all about the doing dirty work," she said with a smile, "It's all about doing what you are needed to do for the team."

That being said, Snow was still a member of the team and therefore expected to suit up for every game and stand ready if the opportunity ever arose. The opportunity finally presented itself during a game against Rice, her junior year, when she finally got the nod to play.

"It was exhilarating," she said. "I didn't want to go in and mess anything up, so I really worked at protecting the ball and taking care of the little things." When asked about the circumstances under which she finally got playing time, she begins laughing and answers, "We were probably up by like 50 points!" She then goes on to say "I am by no means first off the bench. In order for me to get in, we have to be up by a large margin."

But even as she says that, it's clear that she is happy to be part of the team and very proud of her role.

"I'm not necessarily seeking out playing time. I want to make those that are getting playing time, better."

And by embracing her role on the practice squad, she has the opportunity to help out the most.

"I am good at putting my team mates in game like situations that they are going to face. This way, when it does come to that during a game they will be ready and prepared," Snow said. When it comes time to help the team prepare, she can always be depended on to utilize her incredible speed and her determination.

When asked how she sees herself as a player, she pauses for a while and then bursts out "I guess I'm kind of like the Energizer Bunny. I keep on going and doing whatever I'm asked."

In fact, she is one of the fastest players on the team and led the team this year in the mile run. That's saying a lot considering that this is the fifth highest ranked basketball team in the country.

"She brings a lot of commitment and speed to the team. She may not outshoot everyone, but she'll definitely outrun them," Miller said.

"She's truly inspirational. She's been out there working hard and contributing over the years with hard work as its only reward. Her dedication really shines through when you consider that walk-on players have to try out every year. This year she was the only one to make the team, again."

The hard work and determination that Catherine Snow has demonstrated over the past three seasons has earned her the respect of her teammates and coaches alike. Snow graduated this past December with a degree in Kinesiology, but was asked by Coach Blair to finish out the season with the team.

As a result, she is enrolled in post baccalaureate non-degree (G6) classes this spring and has earned her first scholarship with the team. Snow isn't looking too far into the future.

She is quick to note that right now she's focusing on the current season and along with helping the team succeed, she would really like to see more fans fill Reed Arena for the upcoming conference games.

Perhaps if the team can continue to keep its winning ways up, we'll get a chance to see and appreciate Catherine Snow during the next big route.