by LaVonte Young
ani Tyler signed with TC Thursday. Pictured from left to right: Glenn Tyler (dad), Dani Tyler and Gina Tyler (mom). Standing: TC head coach Romeo Lagmay Jr. Bob Crisp
TALLADEGA -“She is a very interesting player,” said head coach Romeo Lagmay Jr. “She is a person that has unlimited range from beyond the arc. After studying her and evaluating her on tape, I found that she brings more attributes to the game such as passing into the post and she can dribble. If we have those issues where she needs to play a combination spot because she can dribble.”

Tyler verbally agreed to sign with TC in February. She said she is looking forward to being a member of the Tornadoes women’s basketball program.

“The coach sold it on what the program was built on,” Tyler said. “He said the school javascript:toggleEditor();was very tight knit; everyone is close and that seems like something I want to be a part of.”

Last season, TC shot 35 percent from behind the arc. Shakila Cole led the Lady Tornadoes as she shot 34.7 percent from 3-point land. Last season, Tyler only shot 32 percent from the behind the arc. The 5-foot-5 guard hit 10 3-pointers en route to scoring 35 points in a game last season.

“I look at her as being one of my 3-point assassins,” Lagmay said. “My coaching staff and I are going to make her into one of the top 3-point shooters in the nation. I am looking at her as the No.1 3-point shooting guard on the west coast and definitely in the state of California. Her first year here, she should be in the top five in 3-point shooting. We are going to try to bring more to her game than just shooting, because we don’t want her to be one-dimensional.”

Getting after her opponent on the defensive end of the court is something that Tyler said she really enjoys.

“I am a shooter, but I really like playing defense and being aggressive,” Tyler said. “That is one of my favorite things. I feel like the school and the coach from every one I talked to is tough on academics and basketball. That will keep me focused and ready to win some games.”

Tyler grew up in the same area of TC’s former All-American Morgan Bennett. Lagmay said he knows Tyler is going to compete at a high level and she will not back down.

“I am very excited about her,” Lagmay said. “She has great academics, so she is definitely over that 3.0 GPA. She is from the same area that Morgan Bennett is from in California. She is going to bring a lot of toughness. What I like about her is that she is a tough girl. She is not timid; she is going to go out there and compete. I think that she is mentally strong.”

Coming to Talladega may be a culture shock for Tyler. Living in Los Angeles, she always had plenty of options in her social life. Now, her only two options are school and basketball.

“The school that I am coming from is bigger than the town in total, so it’s going to be much different,” Tyler said. “I think being here will give me more time to focus. It won’t be so crazy and people everywhere. I think I’ll be use to anything.”

Tyler, a self-proclaimed gym rat, said she is going to spend a lot of time in the gym getting up shots and studying.

“I am always going to be in the gym and I am always going to be working hard,” Tyler said. “Playing basketball is my favorite thing. As far as academics, I’ve always had pretty good grades. I didn’t have a choice; my parents made sure of it. Not getting good grades isn’t an option.”

Contact LaVonte Young at Follow him on Twitter @ LYoung@DHSports.
© 2012