February 2012 Archives

Long Road of Faith Leads Mungedi to Nevada

If you haven't had a chance to catch a Wolf Pack women's basketball game this year, you probably haven't met one of Nevada's newest student-athletes, Mireille "Mimi" Mungedi. Mimi came to the University of Nevada from Gabon and has a very unique story.


Learn a bit more about Mimi in this story, written by women's basketball senior and athletics department intern Christina Gough:


Long Road of Faith Leads Mungedi to Nevada

Written by communication intern Christina Gough   

Mireille Mungedi, who goes by Mimi, has taken a very unique path to the University of Nevada women's basketball team, coming to Nevada from Libreville, Gabon in Africa.

One of first questions that people ask the 6-7 Mungedi is what brought her to the other side of the world to play basketball for the Wolf Pack. The soft-spoken 22-year old normally has a very simple response: that it was her faith that brought her here. Mungedi's strong faith and passion allowed her to follow her heart even if it meant leaving her comfort zone and her family. Mungedi left behind her mother and father, along with four of her sisters. Mungedi's other two sisters, Linda and Sandrine, both live in the U.S. as well.  Mungedi lived in North Carolina for a little over a year and a half before traveling across the country to Nevada.

Along with her height, Mungedi also has an extreme amount of natural athleticism and physical ability. Prior to coming to Nevada, Mungedi had only participated in organized basketball for six years. Her ability to quickly learn the game of basketball is something that can most likely be attributed to her high level of intelligence.

Mungedi is studying civil engineering and has a great desire to, as she put it, "build things." Her interest in in engineering is something that is very rare not only among women, but among student-athletes in general. The education system in Africa is much different than the one used here in America. By the time students in Africa reach the 10th grade, they choose one of two sequences of classes that they will continue to study. The first sequence consists of science, math, chemistry and physics. The second sequence focuses on English, French, economics and philosophy. Mungedi chose to study the first sequence, which has led to her decision to study engineering.  Mungedi hopes to use her degree in civil engineering for a career in working on the construction of large buildings, roads and bridges. These are areas that are significantly lacking in Africa, Mungedi said.

            The biggest obstacle for Mungedi coming to the U.S. was the language barrier. While she was able to quickly understand people speaking the language, she found that it was more difficult for others to understand her speaking, due to her heavy accent.

There is much more to Mungedi than her intelligence and basketball ability. She is an avid tennis fan, loves to cook and enjoys going to see romantic comedies. Her favorite professional athlete is tennis player Rafael Nadal. Mungedi is also fluent in three languages including English, French and Lingala. Lingala is the native language of her village in Gabon.

Although her journey to Division I basketball has come with much sacrifice, Mungedi is very pleased with her decision to come to Nevada. Mungedi hopes to leave her mark on the program and continue on with her career in engineering.


A look ahead at two men's basketball recruits

Chris Murray has a nice story up on his blog looking at two incoming Wolf Pack basketball players. Marqueze Coleman and Cole Huff will both be with the team for the 2012-13 season and are having great years in their respective leagues as high school seniors.

The Wolf Pack Loves Our Firemen

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The Wolf Pack appreciates its heroes: the firefighters, police officers and first responders who do so much to keep us safe and make northern Nevada a great place to live.

And this afternoon, Wolfie Jr. and some of Nevada's cheerleaders visited some of the firehouses in Reno and Sparks to show our appreciation. We handed out free tickets and invited all of the firefighters to join the Wolf Pack on Valentine's Day when the Nevada men's basketball team takes on Cal State Bakersfield at 7 p.m. that night at Lawlor Events Center.

Enjoy some of the pictures from today and we hope you can come out to join the Wolf Pack (and our firefighters) on Tuesday night.

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Honoring Dick Trachok

Wolf Pack Athletics Director Emeritus Dick Trachok and his wife, Fran, are being honored for the time and commitment they have given to northern Nevada, Reno High School and the University of Nevada with a tribute at the Eldorado this weekend. Tickets at $25 for adults and $12.50 for children and can be purchased by calling (775) 786-5700 (mention code 12DT). For more information, call (775) 954-4052.

We honored Dick, a 1949 Nevada graduate, for his eight decades of service to the university this fall at the Hall of Fame Dinner and then again with the presentation of a championship ring from the 2010 football season in October. A star halfback in the 1940s, Dick served as the Wolf Pack head football coach and director of athletics and was inducted into the Nevada Athletics Hall of Fame in 1975. He was also instrumental in starting and serving as chairman of Nevada's Hall of Fame among his countless achievements at the university.

If you want to learn a little more about the Trachoks and their commitment to the community and the University of Nevada, here's a great story by Lenita Powers of the Reno Gazette-Journal that ran in Sunday's paper.

In honor of the achievements, we wanted to share a couple of our favorite photos from Dick's eight decades of service to the University of Nevada.

Dick Trachok receiving his 2010 championship ring from Director of Athletics Cary Groth and University President Marc Johnson.

Dick from his playing days (#21 with the ball)

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Dick was Nevada's head coach from 1959-68 and even coached a young and upcoming quarterback by the name of Chris Ault.

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Finally, Dick served as Nevada's athletics director from 1969-85 and continues to come into Legacy Hall every day as athletics director emeritus.

Congratulations to Coach Trachok and his wife, Fran, as they are honored this weekend!

Welcome Inside Wolf Pack Athletics

Welcome to the Inside Wolf Pack Athletics blog, the newest feature on our website. We hope that this will give you, our Wolf Pack fans, an inside look at Nevada Athletics and help you get to know a little more about our program. I am Cary Groth, Director of Athletics, and I will be a regular contributor to our blog as will other members of our staff and coaches. We want to introduce you to our student-athletes, coaches and people behind the scenes and share the stories you might not hear - all to give you a better understanding of the Silver and Blue.


I want to thank each and every one of you for everything you do to support Wolf Pack Athletics, including buying tickets to our games, donating to the Pack Educational Fund and our programs, listening and watching our games on the radio and television, wearing your Silver and Blue, supporting our sponsors, visiting our website and hopefully now reading our blog.


We have been working to make changes based on the feedback you have given us over the past few years, and I hope you have noticed some of the things we have done to enhance your experience as a fan of our program. With that in mind, if you have a question you would like answered or a topic you would like us to address on our blog, email Associate Athletics Director for Communications Rhonda Lundin at rlundin@unr.edu and we will be happy to respond. We welcome your feedback and want to make Inside Wolf Pack Athletics one of your favorite stops on our website.


For those of you watching the Super Bowl on Sunday (you know, the other big game after the Wolf Pack beats Idaho on Saturday night at Lawlor Events Center), here is the recipe for one of my favorite gameday party snacks.


This dip gets spicier as it sits, but just a warning... once you start eating it, you won't be able to stop!


Have a great weekend and Go Pack!

- Cary


Cary's Super Bowl Dip

- 3  12 oz. packages Johnsonville Maple Pork patties or 2 packages Jimmy Dean Maple pork sausage
2  8 oz. packages Philadelphia cream cheese
2  10 oz. cans of Rotel Diced Tomatoes and Green Chiles (for milder dip, use Rotel Mexican Tomatoes)
3 bags 10.5 oz. Fritos Scoops corn chips 

Brown sausage in a large skillet. Add cream cheese and tomatoes. Stir until cheese is melted. Serve warm with Fritos.



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