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,”