Julia Marshall has spent far more of her college basketball career on operating tables and in training rooms than any player would like. But that time away from the court has served to illuminate her post-Boise State basketball path medical school.
Its always been in the back of my mind. But just being around all the medical side of things has definitely drawn me in, said Marshall, who will earn her degree in psychology in December and begin graduate work in kinesiology in the spring.
As much help as Ive gotten from all the doctors and training staff, it makes me want to give back in a way, to use what I know to help other people.
Marshall, a 5-foot-9 junior guard, certainly has experience to draw on, having suffered from head to toe in three seasons at Boise State.
Two concussions. A shoulder impingement. A cyst in her wrist. Bruised ribs. Two surgeries on her right knee. A subluxation of her left kneecap. And surgeries on both ankles.
Its off-the-charts. I dont know if Ive had anyone like her. Its not like her pain threshold is soft or anything. These are all major, Boise State womens basketball coach Gordy Presnell said.
Marshall played in 30 games as a freshman in 2009-10, but just nine the next year before redshirting and 22 in 2011-12 despite knee pain that required surgery when the season ended. She had her patella tendon repositioned to keep the kneecap in alignment.
Healthy, for Marshall, is a relative term. The Broncos will manage her minutes carefully in games and limit her practice time. But she can still be a versatile and productive player for the Broncos. Marshall made 26-of-61 3-point attempts (42.6 percent) in the last two seasons and her intelligence makes her an asset in the final minutes.
She can make a great contribution. She plays in the stretch of games because I trust her, said Presnell, who will try to keep Marshall to between 16 and 25 minutes, depending on how she is feeling.
Marshall played 10 minutes and scored five points in the Broncos season-opening 80-63 win at Utah Valley on Friday.
While the injuries have robbed her of some of her athleticism and skill, the time spent watching has made her smarter and savvier as a player, she said.
I want to be able to contribute. I want to be able to do my part when coach needs it, when my teammates need it, Marshall said. I like being able to get whatever job done. If we need someone to just get stops, Im willing to be that person. If we need someone to hit a 3, Im willing to be that person.
Brian Murphy: 377-6444,Twitter: @MurphsTurph