Can you share why your foundation is so close to your heart? I had my son (Jordan Jackson). Sheryl Swoopes: I don’t think I model my game after anyone growing up. It is way too early to tell, but do you think that’s a fair comparison two either group of players currently? The league had done all of this marketing and hype around me being the first player, and now I'm pregnant. Prime members enjoy FREE Delivery and exclusive access to music, movies, TV shows, original audio series, and Kindle books. I believe Dawn Staley does a phenomenal job doing that. He got a scholarship, and I saw how proud my mom was, and I wanted to follow in his footsteps. Again I thought there is always going to be pressure if you allow it to be pressure. And I was healthy. I would also wish more WNBA teams would give former WNBA players more opportunities to a part of their organizations. They are stuck in there way, and things won’t change. Can you share with us what that opportunity meant to you is that you are a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame? I did everything to get back in shape. I wore tape. The first-ever female baller to receive a signature silhouette from the Swoosh, … Hall of Famer Sheryl Swoopes discusses her foundation, the current state of the WNBA, and how her shoe deal with Nike came about in the first place. "My hope is that it opened doors for young girls," Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer Swoopes, 49, said. For me to leave the house, I had to say I was going to play basketball with my brothers. Sheryl Swoopes: I think it is excellent and I think its an excellent opportunity and great entertainment. I wanted to be the next one. With its unconventional lacing system and showy, vertical Swoosh, it quickly resonated beyond the hardwood. The kicks were sleek, had a futuristic aesthetic and were topped off with clean lines. That's what I did. Sheryl Swoopes: First of all, I am a huge A’Ja Wilson Fan. For me, with a company like Nike, which is one of the biggest sneaker companies out there. I got the opportunity to meet the designer, but look at the coin itself it tries represents male basketball players, female basketball players, but also there is a wheelchair basketball as well. I loved his game, loved Scottie Pippens game, so there would be things that I would see them do, and when I went to practice or working out on my own that I would try, but I really didn’t pattern my game after anyone. Sue is a true point guard; she sees the floor very well; she understands the game and knows how to be a leader. And the understanding she always had of the game. My second thought was, "But, I'm letting the league down." It is to educate and empower our African American youth to understand their ancestral heritage through traveling to Africa, through mentorship, and basketball camps. As her teammate, there were moments when she do something I would sit there or when I was on the court where it was male or female, players weren’t supposed to do some of the things she was doing. In order to navigate out of this carousel please use your heading shortcut key to navigate to the next or previous heading. It was important to be a part of the first season. Diana Taurasi, no doubt about it, is one of the best to ever play the game, and Brittney Griner, I think, can be a very great basketball player. I have always respected her for that, and when I look at Coop, Coop is just a flat out scorer she could just score. My mom was so strict. Originally released in 1997, the Air Swoopes II was the follow-up to WNBA superstar Sheryl Swoopes’ signature shoe. The latest return keeps every detail that made the shoe a stand-out. The reason why it is near and dear to my heart, and I’m passionate about it because I feel in today’s society all of our youth. The first [iteration] of Swoopes had a strap on them. Landon Buford: What are some of the events that the organization has planned heading into the ladder part of 2020? And I think of how many of the [current] WNBA players that deserve a shoe. Sheryl Swoopes: Oh, wow, that was huge. I started playing when I was 7. Please try your search again later. I got out there maybe four or five minutes at a time. I recently spoke with Swoops about her foundation, the Sheryl Swoopes Foundation for Youth project Back to Our Roots, which is her non-profit organization that focuses on empowering and educate today’s youth through sport, setting goals and to explore different cultures particular in Africa. Sheryl Swoopes: I really don’t get too caught up in that because I think there are some tremendous talents in the WNBA, and I have a lot of respect for Skylar and what she did in college and in the WNBA. The latest return keeps every detail that made the shoe a stand-out. Please make sure that you are posting in the form of a question. During her first four seasons in the WNBA, Swoops proved why she deserved to be awarded a shoe deal from Nike, as she went on to be the first-ever player to record a triple-double in the regular season as well as, the playoffs. I always say someone must be the first to be able to lay a foundation for so many young people coming behind us coming to achieve what we did but to surpass us. I would be interested in investing, running the team, and I would be interested in being a part of the Comets. She is a fan of the game. Because I'd always wanted that. Why do you feel it’s been difficult for many players of your stature to relate and bring the best out of your players when accepting coaching jobs after their playing careers? When I played, you had a true center, who would play with their back to the basket, and they wouldn’t bring the ball up the floor and shooting three, and there is nothing wrong with that. I wanted to make [my mom] proud. Powered by. That has always been my mission, focus, and passion for reaching out to not just young women, men as well, but especially young women.