“We get to LA, and she's like, ‘This is way too fast for me,'” Darrell said. “When we got to Stillwater, we were in love with that place the first three hours we were there.”
One week after signing her letter of intent in November 2011, a plane crash killed Serna and head coach Kurt Budke.
“She was going to back out after that accident,” Darrell said. “I told her, ‘What would Serna want you to do? She recruited the hell out of you, and I think you have an obligation to go there.' That was the best thing she did was go.”
Added Brittney: “I kind of thought they still wanted me to go here. I'd still be going (to OSU) if they were here … I'm glad I came here. I'm glad I made this decision.”
Brittney became an immediate starter for the Cowgirls and has always brought a well-rounded skill set, averaging 9.9 points, 6.4 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 2.9 steals per game.
With a 6-foot frame, she's got good size for a shooting guard and the strength to drive inside. She also has the finesse to create off the dribble and hang in the air before releasing a jumper. And she's got quick hands and a natural ability to anticipate and grab a steal on the perimeter.
So even with the share of freshman mistakes sprinkled throughout the season, the OSU coaching staff hasn't been afraid to challenge Brittney.
After not needing to play much defense in high school, Brittney has focused on that area of her game and enters Saturday ranked third in the Big 12 in steals. She rarely brought the ball up the floor before arriving at OSU, but is now trusted to handle that role if point guard Tiffany Bias is double-teamed. And with improved confidence on offense, the coaches are starting to dial up more plays designed specifically to get her the ball.
“She's got a little bit of everything thrown at her,” Littell said, “and she's getting to where she can handle that.”
Littell won't go as far as to declare that Brittney should be the Big 12 Freshman of the Year. And Brittney's not too concerned with any awards, either, as the Cowgirls make a push for the NCAA Tournament.
“I've got a lot of work to do,” she said. “I'll never be satisfied.”
MORE FROM NEWSOK
No. 25 Oklahoma State vs. Kansas State
*When: 4 p.m. Saturday
*Where: Gallagher-Iba Arena, Stillwater
*Radio: KGFY-FM 105.5
Three things to know
*This is OSU's Play4Kay game, an initiative to raise breast cancer awareness named in honor of late N.C. State coach Kay Yow. The Cowgirls will wear pink shoes Saturday in support.
*K-State has won four in a row against OSU, including a 76-70 overtime victory in Manhattan on Jan. 23.
*K-State's Brittany Chambers ranks second in the Big 12 in scoring with 19.6 points per game.