Shoni and Jude Schimmel: Why they kick ass

  • Shoni and Jude Schimmel are are indispensable members for The Louisville Cardinal women’s basketball team, and are also tribal members of the Confederated Tribe of Umatilla Indians. They are also the only American Indians to ever play in a NCAA Division 1 basketball title game.
  • When she was a junior in high school, Shoni was the subject of a documentary entitled Off the Rez, as she attempted to become the first from her reservation to gain an athletic scholarship. she succeeded, and her sister followed in her footsteps, even winning the Elite 89 award earlier in the tournament, a distinction given to the top student-athlete participating at each NCAA championship site. 
  • They’ve become inspirations to thousands around the country, while only  three years ago Shoni and Jude were budding superstars at Franklin High School in Southeast Portland; two teenagers with flash and flair who left the reservation and talked about setting a positive example for young Natives.
  • Shoni and Jude commanded attention throughout the tournament, leading Louisville to a shocking win over No. 1 Baylor, considered the biggest upset in tournament history. ESPN showed pictures of a young Shoni and Jude in full tribal wear, as fans across the country became familiar with their backstory.
  • The fifth-seeded Cardinals were the lowest seed in history to play in a title game and with most of their players back, they will be a Top 5 team next season. “Without a doubt, this is going down as one of the greatest runs in women’s basketball,”
Indigenous Women I Look Up To (Pt. 1)

In correlation to my previous post, here’s some Natives that inspire me to do what I do! I’ll do another longer list of “Inspirational Natives” in the near future. Natives who have amazing accomplishments deserve to be celebrated! So here are a few incredible ladies I look up to (I did this up quickly, I’ll probably come back to edit it to make it longer lol)

1. Lisa Charleyboy (Tsilhqot’in – Raven Clan): http://urbannativemag.com

Lisa is a beauty/entertainment/food/travel/music/fashion blogger, entrepreneur, and social media trailblazer! She has created her own empire and has inspired me to continue blogging.

2. Suzette Amaya (Cree, Nisga, Coast Salish): http://www.coopradio.org/station/archives/20

Suzette was a contestant on Big Brother Canada season 1. Around that, she has an award-winning radio show called ThinkNDN that I’ve been binge-streaming lately. She’s a seasoned radio/social media veteran and makes me want to do better in my own radio show position.

3. Ashley Burnham (Callingbull) (Enoch Cree Nation): http://www.chatelaine.com/living/features-living/all-hail-mrs-universe-ashley-callingbull/

Who doesn’t know Ashley?! The new Mrs. Universe took over social media by storm by using her platform to raise awareness on indigenous issues and equality for Native women all over Canada. Oh, and she was the covergirl for Chatelaine.

4. Shoni and Jude Schimmel (Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation) https://www.facebook.com/SchimmelSisters/

They’re sisters who have played for the University of Louisville Cardinals, inspiring all little native athletes all over the world. Also Shoni had a documentary made about her journey to Louisville (Off the Rez) and she made the WNBA (New York Liberty). Jude released a book (Dreamcatcher) and was named in the Top 10 College Women in GLAMOUR Magazine.

5. Acosia Red Elk (Umatilla Tribe): https://www.instagram.com/redelk42/?hl=en https://www.1859oregonmagazine.com/other/acosia-red-elk

If you’re a jingle dress dancer (or a pow wow fan in general) you’ve heard of Acosia Red Elk. She’s the 8x World Champion jingle dress champion at the Gathering of Nations. She’s every contemporary jingle dress dancer’s hero! On top of that, she’s a Buti Yoga instructor in Oregon.

Thank you ladies for inspiring me to do better in my career and health! I know you all inspire others too <3

Also, here’s some other great blogs/resources filled with Native content that I like:

Lynn Calf Robe/Iksokapi Magazine: http://www.iksokapimagazine.com

CFWE: http://www.cfweradio.ca

Sweetgrass: http://www.ammsa.com/publications/alberta-sweetgrass

First Nations Drum: http://www.firstnationsdrum.com

check out how gorgeous Umatilla sisters Shoni & Jude Schimmel look with their Louisville Cardinals teammates at the ESPYs! for those that are woefully behind, the Schimmel sisters are two of Indian Country’s rising basketball stars—their team is the runner-up NCAA women’s champion.

Off The Rez.

It’s about the Schimmels. They’re cool.

Keep an eye out for me- I played with them soph and senior year.  I was also very bad at basketball, but Ceci absolutely made me better. Anyway, it’s a really cool story and I really respect them as a family and Ceci as a coach. She’s fabulous. Shoni is obviously an incredible basketball player, considering she starts for Louisville as a freshman. But yeah, watch it.

NPR Article

Mission, Oregon–April 9, 2013– Basketball has long been the most popular sport on Native American reservations, but Oregon sisters Shoni and Jude Schimmel, who belong to Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla in Eastern Oregon, may take the sport to a new level after they led Louisville to the national title game. About two hours before the tip off, kids on the reservation were playing ball and talking about the sisters’ accomplishments on what is known as Shaydin’s Hoop on Walla Walla Court. Photo by Jamie Francis/The Oregonian


Sho nuff Basketball team - basil Williams tournament 2015
#8/Jude Schimmel/ Shoni Schimmel