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Brittney Griner’s No. 42 jersey officially retired by Baylor women’s basketball

By Homero De la Fuente, CNN

(CNN) — The Baylor women’s basketball program retired Brittney Griner’s No. 42 jersey in a pre-game ceremony at the Foster Pavilion, Texas, on Sunday.

Griner, who was wearing a letterman jacket, was met with loud cheers as she walked onto the court. Fans in attendance were all given yellow shirts with the number 42 and a silhouette of Griner emblazoned on the front.

After finishing her collegiate career as the most decorated player in the program’s history, Griner becomes the seventh player to have her jersey retired in Baylor women’s basketball history.

She joins Odyssey Sims, Melissa Jones, Nina Davis, Suzie Snider Eppers, Shelia Lambert and Sophia Young as the only other women’s players to have their jersey number hanging from the rafters.

During Griner’s collegiate career with the Bears from 2009 to 2013, she helped lead the program to a 135-15 record, including a 40-0 record and a national championship title in the 2011-2012 season.

Griner also led the Bears to two Final Four appearances and six Big 12 Conference championships, according to Baylor.

Griner finished her collegiate career with 3,283 points and 1,305 rebounds, while being named a consensus National Player of the Year twice and earning All-Big 12 first team and All-Defensive team honors four times.

She left Baylor as the Big 12’s leader in points scored (3,283), field goals made (1,247), and blocks (748). She still holds the NCAA record for blocks in a season (223) and career.

Following her career at Baylor, Griner was the No. 1 pick in the 2013 WNBA Draft by the Phoenix Mercury, where she’s been a nine-time All-Star selection, and led the franchise to a WNBA title in 2014. She’s also won two Olympic gold medals as part of Team USA’s women’s basketball roster.

Off the court, Griner was detained in Russia in February 2022 and sentenced to nine years in prison under drug smuggling charges after Russian authorities found cannabis oil in her luggage.

Although the US State Department deemed her wrongfully detained, she spent nearly 300 days in a Russian penal colony before she was released in a prisoner swap in December 2022 that involved Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout.

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CNN’s David Close contributed reporting.

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