Feb. 11, 2009
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - Rolltide.com and the Alabama women's track and field team will showcase select players and coaches every week answering nine questions. Questions will pertain to things on and off the track. The 2nd edition features senior Lynda Cooper.
Rolltide.com: You hold both the indoor and outdoor school records in the pole vault, what has enabled you to get to this level?
Lynda Cooper: I can't really say, I started pole vaulting when I was a freshman in college so I don't really have a lot of experience that most others probably do, but I would have to give some credit to Coach Cartwright (former Alabama coach). He taught me a lot of the right ways to learn how to pole vault so I could get to this level. Also my new coach, Coach Roberts (current Alabama coach), had helped me fine tune the things I learned in my freshman and sophomore years.
Rolltide.com: When and why did you get started in the sport of track and field?
Cooper: I started pole vaulting my freshman year of college, and I really only did it because of my other teammate Katherine Strickland. We did gymnastics together and have been friends since we were ten years old. She started doing track and pole vaulting along with gymnastics her junior year, which was my senior year, but track wasn't offered my senior year of high school so I figured if she could do it, I could do it and I walked on the team to learn!
Rolltide.com: What are your personal goals and what are the team goals for the season?
Cooper: My personal goals are really just to improve my technique in every vault. I try not to think about heights I want to make because with the right technique comes higher heights.
Rolltide.com: Where's your favorite track meet to compete at and why?
Cooper: I think Clemson is one of my favorite meets. It's such a nice track in a really great facility and I always just feel my most comfortable there.
Rolltide.com: What's on your iPod right now?
Cooper: There's a mix of everything on my iPod! I have a lot of John Mayer; I am in love with him! Lil Wayne, T-Pain, T.I., Rascal Flatts, Taylor Swift, Mariah Carey, Ne-Yo, Chris Brown, Young Jeezy... I could go on forever!
Rolltide.com: Why did you come to The University of Alabama?
Cooper: Well I'm from Tuscaloosa, and my mom works in the College of Communications here so it was a good fit for me.
Rolltide.com: Do you have any superstitions or rituals before your event?
Cooper: Yeah I do have a ritual... but I like to keep those things to myself.
Rolltide.com: If you could play another sport in college, what would it be?
Cooper: I honestly wouldn't want to play another sport in college! I love track and I had my reasons for not wanting to continue gymnastics through college, so I wouldn't want to do anything else!
Rolltide.com: As one of the four seniors on the team and being able to finish in the top three in every meet this year, is that because you feel the need to lead this team?
Cooper: Yes, I feel the need to lead the team. I always feel like I need to do well for my team and for myself as well. It doesn't have to be a senior who steps up and tries to set the bar for everyone else. Everyone on the team has a chance and should use the meets and the competition to do that.