Just Being Frank: Loving the 'No

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    Brett Frank WarmupsHere is the second edition of "Just Being Frank" from women's basketball assistant coach Brett Frank.

    Here's the sitch . . .

    I was trying to determine what my loyal following wanted to read about. By the way, if you are reading this blog for the second time as my second entry, you're one of the people I'm referring to as my "loyal following."

    I realized school is winding down and the "newsworthy" events of our women's basketball team are few and far between. Seeing as how many of you are not from Fresno (hereafter affectionately referred as "the 'No), I thought it would be fun to highlight this great community and all the wonderful things that go along with being in "the 'No.

    Maybe you recall a newsworthy event in 2000 that brought a little attention our direction. Actress extraordinaire, Anne Heche (at the time claiming to be an alien being by the name of Celestia who could commune with the dead, see into the future, and was the half-sister of Jesus Christ) showed up on a doorstep of an unsuspecting family in our fair community while waiting to board a spaceship.

    Sadly, I didn't arrive until 2002 so while I would've loved the notoriety of her showing up on my doorstep, it didn't happen. If that's not what rings a bell, maybe it's Alan Autry our former mayor. He's a former NFL player and star of the hit television show "In the Heat of the Night." Anytime you have a mayor that played a character named "Bubba" on a television series you know you're in a special place.

    Finally, if Anne and Alan don't ring a bell, maybe it's the Bulldog athletic program that rings a bell. Winners of a World Series in both baseball and softball along with a guy named Pat Hill leading the football charge (he even has a song parody of " Rock and Roll Hoochie Koo " that's been adapted to "Coach Pat Hill's Fu Man Chu") may be what makes you aware of "the 'No. Whatever the reason, this is a place that has great things going on and even greater things ahead!

    Fresno entered the ranks of the Top 100 populated cities in the 1960 census. The early estimate for 2010 has us projected to be at #35. Not too shabby considering there are somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 U.S. states. We're unique in the sense that while we have a large population, we still have that small town community feel which leads me to my two favorite things about "the 'No."

    First and foremost, it's the people that make our city great! From a women's basketball standpoint, just look at the crowds we draw and you'll know you're somewhere special.

    This past season we averaged 2,836 fans for our games played at the Save Mart Center. That total ranks 2nd among schools in California and is a far cry from the 995 people we averaged in road contests. We continued to lead the WAC in attendance this season and know that next year the total will be even higher.

    I've been fortunate to meet some of the most amazing people in my life here (a promised obligatory shout out to L-Train and J-Dog must be inserted at this time)! The hometown feel is here the moment you arrive and the hospitality is to be envied by all.

    The second reason I love "the 'No" is the location. The San Joaquin Valley, known for its fertile soil and diverse landscape is at the heart of what I now call home. A mere 3 hours from either L.A. or San Fran along with a two hour drive to the ocean make this place a traveler's goldmine!

    Less than 50 miles away we have two snow skiing resorts and probably the most beautiful scenery I've seen in my life with the spring and summer waterfalls at Yosemite National Park. Not a fan of cold weather, our climate is very adaptable and is almost perfect 9-10 months of the year.

    While I type this, I'm currently sitting poolside at Becky Hoskins Gonzalez (former assistant coach and co-worker) and her husband, Mario's house overlooking Millerton Lake. Total creative inspiration for writing a blog about "the 'No!" Unfortunately, they return from a tropical vacation today so my time is here is limited (I would insert a sad emoticon face at this juncture, but my technological skills are limited to say the least).

    So enough about what I love about "the 'No." Let's hear from some of the players about what their favorite things are in "the 'No."

    J: (Pinole, CA) "I love that it's a little city in a big place. It has a small town feel to it with all the perks of a big city."

    Drenno: (Melbourne, Australia)" I love that we have "Panera Bread and Wahoo's Fish Taco's. The food here is really amazing!"

    Taylor Tot: (Cache, OK) "I love the weather. I like a warm climate and this is perfect."

    LaEmma Jaynique: (Melbourne, Australia) "The people are the greatest! They are so kind and everyone here is so close."

    G-Money: (Phoenix, AZ)"I love that everything I need is nearby while it still has a small town feel. It's the best of both worlds."

    So there you have it all summed up by some pretty great individuals. My suggestion is that you don't take our word for it. Come out and see it for yourself. I have a feeling you'll leave "the 'No" knowing it's a pretty special place with some pretty special people. I'm not trying to sway you . . . I'm Just Being Frank!

    "Just Being Frank" is part of a recurring series of blogs written by Fresno State assistant women's basketball coach Brett Frank.

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