Conventional wisdom has long proposed that charge or block is the most difficult call in basketball.
But for UC Irvine senior Jade Smith-Willams, the toughest decision of her rollercoaster collegiate career was whether to leave or stay.
And while the essence of the 5-foot-7 point guard's game is her virtual lack of ego, it was the assertion of her own self-interests in deciding to transfer from Chico State to UC Irvine after her sophomore season that the first-team All-Big West Conference honoree considers her defining moment.
"The thing I'm most proud of, doesn't really have much to do with basketball," said Smith-Williams, who leads the Anteaters in points, assists, steals and minutes played heading into a Big West Conference Tournament semifinal clash at UC Davis tonight at 7. "It involves my transition, when I decided to transfer."
Smith-Williams chose Chico State, a Division II power, over Portland State out of San Leandro High, though she had great reluctance about its reputation as a party school, it's small-town feel and its modest academic profile.