Jan. 29, 2009
By Keenan Bowen, EWU Sports Information
Senior guard Morgan Rulon came to Eastern because of its excellent exercise science program, but when graduation time comes she'll leave with more than just a degree - an NCAA Division I basketball experience.
Rulon, from Richland, Wash., joined the Eastern Washington University women's basketball team right before the start of the 2007-08 season. Since then, she has been a vocal leader for a team that is unusually young by getting it done in practice and in the classroom.
On the court, Rulon saw action in 15 games her first season in an Eagle uniform. Her personal highlights came against Montana Tech and Marist on Nov. 11 and 24, respectively, when she nailed threes in each of those games. Rulon also contributed five assists and five rebounds in 54 minutes of action with the Eagles in 2007-08.
Rulon was also named to the Big Sky Conference All-Academic team last season.
This year, Rulon and the Eagles are sitting at 8-11 and 3-3 in Big Sky action - good for a share of third place with Northern Colorado. The Eagles take on Montana State (8-10, 2-4) tonight at Reese Court. Tipoff is set for 7:05.
Q: You joined the team right before the beginning of the season last year - how did that come about?
A: "When I came to Eastern I played on the club volleyball team and I played intramural basketball, and it was just something I still wanted to do. I heard through the grapevine the team was looking for some guards, so my roommate told me to go try out and the worst thing that could happen was they could say no. I tried out and things turned out the way they are now."
Q: Why did you choose to attend Eastern after playing in junior college?
A: "After Columbia Basin College, I decided that I wanted to pursue the exercise science degree and possibly physical therapy. I knew Eastern had a great program, so that enticed me to come to Eastern."
Q: You played softball in junior college as well - have athletics always been a big part of your life?
A: "Yes. I played three sports in high school and my older brother was into sports too. My mom is a volleyball coach and my dad played sports also, so it was something that was just in the family."
Q: You were on the Big Sky Conference All-Academic team last year - how do you balance success in the classroom while playing Division I basketball?
A: "It takes a lot of prioritizing. I have a planner and it is full, all day every day. It takes a lot of planning ahead of time and keeping up communication with my teachers, making sure we are on the same page during travel weeks. I also do a lot of homework on the road."
Q: What are your goals for after you graduate from Eastern?
A: "I want to go to graduate school. I am going to have to take a year to get some observation hours, letters of recommendation, take my graduate record examination (GRE) - things like that before I apply to physical therapy graduate school."
Q: What do you feel is your role on the team this year as one of only two seniors?
A: "I'm a leader, a captain. Since I am older I try to be a mentor. I try to pass my knowledge of the game to the younger players, since we have so many, and lead by example. I'm not on the floor that much, but I keep a positive attitude to make sure everyone gets going; I'm the energy on the bench."
Q: What part of basketball do you like best?
A: "I like a part of a team the most, and I like shooting the ball - putting the ball in the hole."
Q: Who has been the most influential person in your playing career?
A: "I've had so many good coaches, including my mom. The way my parents raised me has influenced the way I bring something to the team. Also, Evan Woodward, my high school basketball coach. He is just a happy, energetic, positive guy who incorporated fun to practice - along with hard work and determination."
Q: If you had to pick one teammate to take a game-winning shot, who would it be and why? What about a game-winning free throw?
A: "It's got to be Kyla Evans, because she can cast it from anywhere. Once she knows that she is on, she'll take responsibility for it and make sure the ball goes in. For the free throw, I'd want to take it. I'll make a free throw to win a game!"