The education of Sarah Imovbioh is continuing on the practice courts at John Paul Jones Arena this summer.
Imovbioh was putting in another shift on Thursday afternoon, working with the other post players on Virginia's 2013-14 roster. The roster lists Imovbioh as a junior, but the alum of nearby St. Anne's-Belfield is getting ready for her second season on the court for the Cavaliers.
Imovbioh got her first taste of college basketball last season, playing all 30 games for the Cavaliers. She opened her career with a 21-point performance in UVa's win over James Madison -- tying the program record for highest total in a player's first career game -- and she finished the season shooting 59.1 percent from the floor, the highest field goal percentage in the ACC.
But after sitting out her freshman season after the NCAA ruled her ineligible because of an issue with her high school enrollment while living in Nigeria, Imovbioh admits part of her was just happy to be on the floor at all.
"I thought it was a pretty good year, even though we didn't achieve what we wanted," she said. "But it was a good year just to be out there and play. Now I know how it feels."
Imovbioh's 535 minutes last season were just the seventh-highest total on the team, but she still finished second on Virginia in rebounding (6.8 per game) and third in scoring (8.5 points per game). She broke the 20-point plateau twice, and had an 18-point, 18-rebound performance in an overtime loss to Wake Forest.
And according to senior Ataira Franklin, Imovbioh is showing several signs of improvement this summer.
"Offensively, she's so much more aggressive; so much more controlled," Franklin said. "She came in really raw. But she's really been able to pick up some skills, and kind of hone in on what her role is going to be on this team."
"I think I'm a little more experienced, I would say," said Imovbioh. "Now I'm trying to take my game to the next level. Working on my footwork, and the pace of the game."
Franklin says she Imovbioh has also shown signs of getting more comfortable as a leader for the Cavaliers this summer.
"She's another player that's hungry," said Franklin. "She's somebody who, if you tell her she can't do something, she's really going to go out there and try to prove you wrong. She's extremely coachable. She listens, she's respectful."
"I feel like the sky's the limit for Sarah."