High School Sports
Former Cougar, basketball
champ muses over accomplishments
Name: Conor Richardson
Position: graduate assistant for women’s basketball at Duquesne University
Conor Richardson is a 2015 Carlynton graduate. She played on the girls basketball team while in high school, contributed to Carlynton going to the WPIAL Class AA semifinals and PIAA Championship in 2015 and WPIAL quarterfinals. She was also on the Cougars WPIAL AA Section 5 championship team in 2015. Richardson is currently an assistant basketball coach at Duquesne University while pursuing her MBA.
G2.0: At what age did you realize you were good at basketball?
Richardson: My first basketball coach, Coach Vada Epps, introduced me to the game and really laid the foundation for me and I realized I was good at basketball around the 6th grade when I started playing AAU for the Western PA Bruins under Spender Stefko with some of the best players in the area.
He is an awesome teacher and coach who really broke the game down for me. Following the Bruins I played for the Pittsburgh Rockers under Howard Dorsey, who gave me the swag, skill, and confidence that really took my game to the next level.
G2.0: What is your greatest attribute as a player?
Richardson: In high school, I was a versatile scorer and point guard, but in college, my role changed and my greatest attribute as a player was my hustle and defensive IQ. I was the spark for the team and was willing to do the dirty work and sacrifice my personal goals for the team. My goals on the floor were to make my opponents doubt their own game while playing me and I wanted them to hate being guarded by me.
G2.0: What was the most difficult part of your training regimen?
Richardson: I battled a lot of injuries in my career and I absolutely hated doing rehab. After seven surgeries, I’m still traumatized till this day.
G2.0: It must be great to have your name mentioned in Carlynton basketball history with some of the greats like Bonnie Rimkus, Jenny Joyce, Mandy Yustak, Toni Roscoe, Kacy O’Brien and Khristen Bonner.
Richardson: I wish I could have played a full four years of basketball at Carlynton, but with injuries, I only played two full seasons.
I feel like I would have been able to make an even bigger impact and put up big numbers like my Coach Kristen Bonner. [Shout out] to my girl!
G2.0: What do you enjoy most about basketball?
Richardson: The competitiveness and swag of the game. It’s a different kind of feeling crossing somebody up and hearing the crowd’s “Ooosss” or stealing the ball from someone and draining 3’s. There’s nothing like it.
G2.0: What’s it like coaching at your alma mater, Duquesne, under the coach who recruited you, Dan Burt?
Richardson: I have a lot of love for this program and the fact that Coach Burt saw enough in me as a player to have me on his staff as a coach means so much.
G2.0: What advice would give to young girls who have goals to play sports in college?
Richardson: It’s not all glitz and glamour like it’s portrayed to be, the [division one] lifestyle specifically, is a full-time job that is very consuming, but worth it. If you’re serious about playing sports in college make sure you work on your mental toughness and mental health because the physical aspect is a breeze compared to it.