Jeff Walz says WNBA teams were high on Dana Evans


Jeff Walz wanted Dana Evans to make the best choice for herself in deciding to return for her senior year or pursue the WNBA Draft. The 5-foot-6 guard announced her decision to return to Louisville women’s basketball for her season last week.

After averaging 18.0 points and 4.2 assists during her junior year, Evans was named ACC Player of the Year as Louisville won the conference title outright for the first time in the program’s six years in the league.

The Louisville head coach is excited to have her back, but would have supported Evans regardless of her decision.

“I told her when we first talked about it that ‘we are going to support you in whatever decision you decide to make,’” Walz said. “I’m not one of those that is twisting their arms to do something that is going to benefit me. I want her to do something that is best for her. Her and her family sat down and talked about it.”

Evans established herself as one of the ACC’s most prolific scorers in 2019-20.

She scored 20 or more points in 10 games this season, which was tied for fourth in the ACC, and finished in double figures in all but one game this season. Evans made 90 shots from behind the arc while shooting 43.1% on 3-point attempts.

She became the first player in ACC history to be named sixth player of the year and player of the year in back-to-back seasons, along with being selected as a Second Team All-American by the Associated Press and United States Basketball Writers Association (USBWA).

With the WNBA delaying its season amid the outbreak of COVID-19 (coronavirus), Walz said there was a little too much uncertainty for Evans to pursue a career professionally. Walz spoke with teams about Evans’ ability as she mulled her decision.

“They are very high on her, but at the same time I think she will benefit from one more year of college basketball,” Walz said. “I think her draft status will go up even higher.”