Louisville FOCUS coach discusses 2014 WKU target Javonna Layfield

Ballard junior forward Javonna Layfield, who plays AAU ball for the Louisville FOCUS, has been offered a scholarship by Western Kentucky. (Submitted photo)

Ballard junior forward Javonna Layfield, who plays AAU ball for the Louisville FOCUS, has been offered a scholarship by Western Kentucky. (Submitted photo)

While talking Tuesday with Tim Barnett, coach of the Louisville FOCUS girls’ AAU program, for a feature on Lady Topper walk-on Ciera Woods, I also talked to him about 2014 WKU target Javonna Layfield.

Layfield, a 5-foot-10-inch forward at Ballard High School in Louisville, is averaging 14.8 points, 10 rebounds, 4.1 steals, 2.2 assists and 1.4 blocks for the Lady Bruins (16-2). She’s also shooting 53 percent from the field.

Layfield has the most interest from Western Kentucky, Eastern Kentucky and UNC-Wilmington, according to Ballard coach Frank Wright.

WKU has offered and Layfield has taken an unofficial visit to the school, said Barnett, who’s coached Layfield at Ballard and with the FOCUS.

Here are a few of Barnett’s thoughts on Layfield:

TIM BARNETT, Louisville FOCUS coach

On Layfield: “She’s been with me since she was in the eighth-grade. It was always a situation where she was bigger, stronger and extremely athletic. In middle school, they would just put her in the post, and she would jump over everybody. When I got her, it was to really work and focus on skill set.”

On coaching an eighth-grade Layfield on Ballard JV squad: “I would put her at the point guard, and she would always freak out. When she got to the varsity level as a freshman, coach (Steve) Kaufman and I would put her at point guard. She had her ups and downs. She would turn the ball over a lot, but the bigger picture was to transform her from a post player to a 2 or a 3.”

On her skills: “She can really shoot the 3. She just didn’t shoot it before because she didn’t have a good enough position to do it. But she’s got a great form, and she has a solid handle. She’s got a great mid-range game, and I’m starting to see her show more of a skill set this year. She’s a great kid with a good personality, and she’s going to work and compete every possession.”

On visit to WKU: “When she went up there for her unofficial visit, I was telling her about (sophomore guard Alexis) Govan. She reminds me of what (Javonna) can do. She’s that kind of player. Govan is a lot more aggressive this year with the ball, and that obviously comes with coaching. But she kind of reminds me of her – a lot.”

On relationship with WKU, Heard: “Coach Heard kind of got the jump on her while she was at Louisville. She was the one really sparking the interest for Louisville. I always told (Layfield) not to worry about the name on the uniform. You’ve got to go where they really want you, and where you can contribute and be part of it right away.”


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