By GREG KEIM
THE GOSHEN NEWS
NorthWood girls basketball player Jordyn Frantz grew up in a family centered around the sport: Her two older sisters both played for the Panthers and one went on to play at the next level: Sister Courtney played for a year at the University of St. Francis.
“I was probably about 2 when I started dribbling a basketball,” Frantz said with a smile. She started playing youth basketball at about age 7.
Up until Frantz entered high school, she carried a basketball with her to school.
“I even put it in my locker,” Frantz recalled.
That came to an end in high school. “My dad was like, “Jordyn, I think it’s time to give that up,” Frantz said.
But Frantz’s elite talent in the Hoosier State’s beloved sport continued to grow.
Even though Frantz is just a junior this season, she has already been attracting attention from college coaches.
Earlier this summer, Frantz was named on a list of the top-10 girls basketball players in Indiana.
And, in fact, Frantz – who again, just started her junior year of high school – already has verbal offers of full-ride scholarships from two NCAA Division I schools. One is from a school relatively far away from Indiana; another is somewhat close by.
Frantz said she will keep her options open.
She wants to be a pediatrician, so a school with a strong pre-med program is a must.
But Frantz isn’t ready to make a decision just yet. And her life is about to get a lot more interesting, as more coaches will be getting into contact soon now that her junior year is under way.
“I’ve got a lot of time,” Frantz said. “I want to do some visits and see what I like.”
A decision will come sometime during Frantz’s senior season.
The early offers are providing even more motivation for Frantz.
“I’m going to work even harder my last two seasons,” Frantz said. “It’s not going to be any additional pressure.”
Frantz, a forward, averaged about 12 ppg. for the Panthers in 2012-13.
This season will be somewhat of an emotional one for the Panthers, as it will be the final season for longtime coach Steve Neff, who announced last season he would retire at the end of the upcoming campaign.
Neff coached all three of the Frantz sisters. “It’s going to be hard to see him go,” Frantz said.
Frantz’s focus these last two seasons, she said, will be on having fun and improving her game – both at the high school level, and on her AAU travel team.
Offseason workouts for the Panthers begin this week as NorthWood prepares for Neff’s final season. Frantz said she and her teammates probably won’t think much about Neff’s impending retirement until later in the season.
They plan to keep Neff’s final ride going for as long as they can, Frantz said.