By Marty Gordon
Collegiate basketball referee Jennifer Rezac is trading in her whistle to take over as the head coach of the Auburn High School women’s basketball team.
Basketball has been a part of her life since she was a youngster. After her involvement with the sport as a player and as a recreational sports and striped official on the NCAA hardwood, she hopes to continue to impact the lives of young players through coaching and teaching the game.
“This game, both as a player, a professional, and as an official has provided so much for me in my life in teaching me lifelong skills such as leadership, time management, problem solving, communication, decision making, and good health, I wanted to be able to continue to provide other young players those same skills through the game for their futures,” she said.
While this is her first “real” coaching experience, Rezac has related to “coaching” for several years as an official.
She is originally from Nebraska where she went to school at private catholic schools in Omaha.
She was a multi-sport athlete growing up throughout high school, playing softball, soccer, volleyball, and basketball. Due to several knee injuries in high school (three ACL tears between both right and left knees) as well as ankle injuries, she walked on at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln basketball program. Injuries kept her sidelined, and she turned to a recreational sports career and to officiating.
Looking at her new adventure, Rezac believes the Auburn High School athletics program is strong, but the girls’ basketball program has not proven to have success for any number of reasons.
“I want to change the mindset around the girls’ program not only within the school but also in the Riner area,” Rezac said. “Our plans not only are geared toward the high school but also toward the development of the girls’ youth program in the Riner area for the future of the middle school.”
Auburn is 3-6 in the 2022 part of its season as the New Year opens with the Mt. Empire District schedule.