By Kip Helt
It was as a toddler in Waco, Texas that Calveion Landrum earned the nickname, “Juicy.”
“When I was a baby I was chubby, like really chubby,” Landrum laughed. “My Mom said I would waddle when I walked.”
If her parents were dishing out monikers today, they’d probably shift to something like, “Shooter.”
After all, the recent Baylor star and third round draft pick of the Sun once knocked down 14 three-pointers in a college game and came within a 15th three of outscoring the opponent – by herself!
“I’m a shooter,” Landrum said.
And a two-year starter for the Bears who posted an impressive 65-3 record during that span, including an epic win over Notre Dame to claim the 2019 National Championship. But it wasn’t all roses and rainbows in Waco.
“My first year I didn’t think I’d be able to do it – I was like, ‘Coach Mulkey is just too tough’,” Landrum said. “I feel like I never had anyone who criticized me as much as she did. At the end of it, it was for a good cause. She made me a better player and a better leader.”
It’s that Baylor DNA, and three-point shooting prowess that Head Coach Curt Miller is counting on when training camp eventually opens and Landrum competes for one of 11 roster spots. It won’t be easy to stick with a team that was eight minutes away from winning its first ever WNBA title last season – but it’s a challenge she relishes.
“I’m a hard worker,” Landrum said. “I just need to go to training camp, give everything I have to give and try my best to be that role player to come off the bench and do what needs to be done.”
In a “normal” year, Landrum would be heading off to training camp next week. But with the Coronavirus pandemic postponing the start of training camp and the beginning of the 2020 season, Landrum is staying active with a workout program designed by Sun strength and conditioning coach Analisse Rios. She is also able to work on her game in isolation at her old high school gym in Waco where her retired jersey number five hangs in the rafters.
The unexpected break has also given her the chanceto devote time to a few of her other passions – shoes and video games. Landrum owns more than 50 pairs of Jordan’s/Air Max shoes and is a die-hard Dallas Cowboys fan who is a beast at Madden. Oh, and she also likes to have a good time with friends.
“I’m goofy,” Landrum said when asked to describe her personality. “Once I get around you I have to get to know you first before you see that side of me. First I’m quiet, I don’t speak much, but once you get to know me I’m really goofy and a little childish.”
And one heck of a shooter.