Lawson will likely be playing with one of these players.
Jennifer Pottheiser
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The 2005 WNBA Draft may not have as many household names as last year's Draft, but this year's crop of seniors is also deep and well-rounded. Sacramento Monarchs guard Kara Lawson spent her WNBA offseason serving as a women's college basketball analyst for ESPN and has probably spent as much time watching the prospects play this season as many scouts. Of course, she does have somewhat of a vested interest - Sacramento has the ninth overall pick in the 2005 WNBA Draft. Prior to the NCAA Tournament, Lawson describes the games of some of the top prospects and predicts how might fit at the next level.

Jacqueline Batteast, Notre Dame: "She has really stepped up her game this year. Similar to Ely, people aren't sure where to play her but she can really score the basketball. She is a big, about 6-2, which is a huge asset for her coming into the league. She has improved her three-point shot. I think she might have to get used to the speed of the game but so will any rookie. She has great skills, a great feel for the game and she has been the go-to player for four years and knows what it's like to have to score and have to produce in clutch situations. I don't think you can ever underestimate those players in college who had the pressure of having to carry a team on her back every game."

Shyra Ely, Tennessee: "She was kind of enigmatic this year. She hasn't played her best basketball in her senior year. I might be a little more critical of her than other people because I played with her and know her game better. She is a great athlete, she is a 'tweener," between the three and the four spots on the floor. When you make this transition, people want to know if she will be able to score. She is a scorer. If you can score, you can play at this level. Who cares what position. That is her biggest asset."

Sandora Irvin, T.C.U.: "I like her a lot. She is a good athlete, a tremendous defensive player that can rebound and block shots. Her anticipation skills as a shot-blocker are great. She is a little raw offensively and needs to sure-up her post game but she loves to play and has fun playing. Another way to judge if someone will be successful at the pro game is if they really love the game. She loves to play and wants to play and wants to be a great player. A great person."

Temeka Johnson, Louisiana State: "When you talk about her, the first thing you have to discuss is her heart and her leadership. She plays hard all the time. She has a tremendous ability to raise up the play of those around her. Detractors will talk about her size or her difficulty hitting the three-point shot, but she has a great feel for the game and knows how to score when she needs to and get everyone else involved. Her leadership is her biggest asset. She's not afraid of anyone."

Kristen Mann, UC-Santa Barbara: "She is kind of a tweener as well. At 6-2, she is bigger and can shoot the ball. It's just a matter of athleticism and defending athleticism for her. That means being able to stop people who are really quick, agile and skilled. But she has a great offensive game, had a lot of responsibility for her college team, shouldering the brunt of the scoring load. Players like her have to have good games or else they lose. At UCSB, she had to carry them. You like players that have gone through that because you know they do well in pressure situations, but she will have to work on scoring on and defending against the best in the WNBA."

Janel McCarville, Minnesota: "The first thing I think about when I think of Janel McCarville is her passing. She has such great passing skills for a post player and sees the game really well. The offense they run in Minnesota gives her a great base as far as seeing the game and read things. That's a step-up for post players from the college game to the pro game. They have to become better passers at the next level, they have to read plays and defenses better. She has a great foundation and a head-start on that. I don't think this will be a tough transition for her. For her, she will have to be able to defend all types of post players from Lisa Leslie to DeLisha Milton-Jones to Cheryl For who are smart, physical and athletic."

Loree Moore, Tennessee: "She is a big, physical guard. That's her strong point. She is used to playing with high quality players from having played at Tennessee. She knows how to succeed and play in that type of atmosphere. Whereas Batteast was the go-to player, she will have to learn how to blend in. Loree already knows know to do that. She can get more with less. She has to improve her offensive game, knock down outside shots consistently. She pushes the ball very well, has a good feel for the game, good point guard and solid all-around player. If she wants to be a great player in this league, she'll have to get better offensively."

Kendra Wecker, Kansas St.: "I like her game, but her adjustment will be having to switch positions at the next level. She's been a four her entire career and she is undersized at 5-11. She has made the transition to the perimeter. She is a tremendous athlete but she will have to improve attacking on the perimeter and becoming a better guard off the dribble. I think playing off the dribble will be her biggest adjustment, not just sitting back or shooting or staying down in the post. Defending players that can do that as well will take some time to adjust to as well. If you come into the WNBA weak in any way on defense it gets exploited right away. You can get away with it in college because you are the superior player. But you can tell she knows this because she has been working on it and improved even from last season to this season. She will have to get even better."

Tan White, Mississippi State: "Wow, I love Tan White. I played against her for two years when I was at Tennessee and she is one of the few guards who can do everything. She is so athletic, a great scorer, a great ball-handler, a great passer, great defender. She is one of my favorite players and I really like her game. Don't sleep on her because Mississippi State was not that good. I'm excited to see her play at this level. It's just a matter of her wanting to come in and work hard. If she does, she will prove herself."

Tanisha Wright, Penn State: "I really respect her as a player because she has worked so hard on the weaknesses in her game. She has improved year by year. She started out pretty much as just an athlete at Penn State, a defensive player. She can guard different types of perimeter players, but she has improved her offensive game this year. She has also proven that she can be a go-to scorer that can knock down shots. She's a good all-around player and I think she'll be a solid player in the WNBA."