Cary-Grove graduate Claire Jakubicek thought long and hard about the one year away from playing competitive basketball required if she transferred to another NCAA Division I school.
“Basketball is my life,” she said. “I didn’t know if I’d be interested in doing that.”
The flipside was that Jakubicek felt she would be happier at a school other than Northern Illinois University. That school will be Indiana, with which Jakubicek signed on Sunday. The 2011 C-G grad will join the Hoosiers for the 2013-14 season.
“I had a lot of options, some nice schools to pick from,” Jakubicek said. “I felt Indiana is going to be the right fit. I’m excited about the university, the education and the basketball.”
Jakubicek, a 6-foot forward, said she did not feel NIU was the proper fit. On the court, Jakubicek was highly successful, averaging 11 points and 5.1 rebounds a game and earning Mid-American Conference Freshman of the Year. She helped the Huskies to a 14-17 overall record, 6-10 in the MAC.
At one point in the season, Jakubicek hit 37 consecutive free throws. News of her decision to leave Northern came in early April.
“I thought about sitting for a year, that’s a long time,” Jakubicek said. “But I’ll still have three years to play. And with my broken foot, it will give me more time to recover.”
Jakubicek suffered a broken fifth metacarpal on Feb. 16 against Ball State and missed the rest of the season. Her activity at this point is limited, although she is walking without the immobilizing boot.
Indiana likely will look forward to Jakubicek becoming eligible. The Hoosiers struggled to a 6-24 record this season, 1-15 in the Big Ten.
“I feel very blessed,” Jakubicek said. “It’s a great opportunity for me. I couldn’t be more excited.”