May 2, 2017

Armintie Herrington sees the new rookie class of the WNBA and you can’t help but to hear the happiness in her for the young women who have made their dreams come true the same way she did in 2007. Herrington was drafted #3 overall in the 2007 WNBA Draft by the Chicago Sky and still remembers the day fondly.

“Being drafted was an unreal feeling,” she said. “From a girl being born in Milwaukee, raised in Mississippi, and picking up a basketball for the first time when I was just in the 8th grade and only knew how to run fast, it was truly a blessing. I was so grateful for that moment not only for me, but for others that want to achieve what I did.”

Herrington’s journey to the WNBA started in Myrtle, MS where she attended Myrtle High School and then received a full scholarship to the University of Mississippi. At Ole Miss, she became one of the school’s most decorated athletes of all time, making the First Team All-SEC once and being named SEC Defensive Player of the Year twice. But her goals at Ole Miss weren’t simply to be a basketball star.

“Going to Ole Miss I didn’t have the dream of going to the WNBA,” she said. “My goals were to be the first one in my family to get a college degree, to make my mom proud, and to not let the school feel like they wasted a scholarship on me. When I got drafted, I knew in that moment I had successfully worked my butt off to sit at that table, to hear my name called, and be a part of the WNBA family.”

Her hard work didn’t stop there. Following her rookie season, Herrington was named the 2007 WNBA Rookie of the Year. She credits her career at Ole Miss and Head Coach Carol Ross for having her WNBA-ready.

”College was so tough for my team and I because we were in the toughest conference (the SEC),” Herrington said. “Coach Ross and her staff pushed us to the limit to be successful. So once I got to the WNBA, I felt I would be able to grow and flourish in the league from the foundation that was laid at Ole Miss.”

Herrington also credits veterans and team leaders like Chasity Melvin, Brooke Wyckoff, Gia Perkins, Stacey Dales, Dominique Canty, and Candice Dupree for helping her blossom in her career.

“Candice is like a sister to me,” she said. “Candice, my teammates, and (former Chicago Sky) Head Coach Bo Overton and Assistant Coach Stephanie White pushed me to be great every day in practice.”

Herrington believes if the new class of WNBA players work hard and have the right support system around them that will push them to be great, then success is attainable.

“My advice to the rookies would be to work like your life depended on it,” she said. “Everyday is a job interview. Not only when you are on the court, but in the community and with the people you will come across every day. Leave a lasting impression so that the team that picked you knows they did not make a mistake. I hope the rookies enjoy the moment and be true to who they are!”

Herrington currently serves as the Coordinator of Player Engagement for the Ole Miss Women’s Basketball helping in the day-to-day running of the program along with mentoring of student athletes, serving as academic and alumni liaison, and being responsible for on-campus recruiting and student-athlete development. She enjoyed a nine-year career in the WNBA playing for the Sky, Atlanta Dream, Los Angeles Sparks, and Washington Mystics.
About the National Basketball Retired Players Association
The National Basketball Retired Players Association (NBRPA) is comprised of former professional basketball players from the NBA, ABA, WNBA and Harlem Globetrotters. It is a 501(c) 3 organization with a mission to develop, implement and advocate a wide array of programs to benefit its members, supporters and the community. The NBRPA was founded in 1992 by basketball legends Dave DeBusschere, Dave Bing, Archie Clark, Dave Cowens and Oscar Robertson. The NBRPA works in direct partnerships with the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association. Arnie D. Fielkow is the President and CEO, and the NBRPA Board of Directors includes Chairman of the Board Dwight Davis, Vice Chairman Mike Glenn, Treasurer Casey Shaw, Secretary Nancy Lieberman, Rick Barry, James Donaldson, Spencer Haywood, LaRue Martin Jr., David Naves, Johnny Newman, and Eldridge Recasner.