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And Now, The Punchline

Nov. 20, 2009

by Jon Cooper, Contributing Editor

ATLANTA — Humor is so subjective.

What’s funny to one person may be offensive to another. It can be a fine line.

Chelsea Regins walks that line deftly, and the Georgia Tech sophomore basketball player is playing to rave reviews.

“She’s a very funny person and keeps all of us laughing on and off the floor,” said associate head coach Teri Moren.

“In all my years she’s probably one of the most outspoken kids I’ve ever coached,” added assistant Octavia Blue. “She’s really funny. I love her personality.”

Okay, so maybe they are biased, and Regins’ act wouldn’t play so well in College Park, Md., Durham, Chapel Hill, Raleigh, and Winston Salem, N.C.. In fact, she probably would get a thumbs-down on just about any of the campuses in the ACC and on Tech’s schedule.

That’s OK. Regins knows her audience and is fine with the niche she’s carved out for herself. It’s her personality.

“I’m just very passionate about what I like to do,” said the Broward, Fla., native. “It does brighten my day to make someone happy. Maybe that’s why I’m so happy-go-lucky.

“Everyone can’t be happy. I feel like a lot of people, if they need a smile or a good laugh they come to me. I don’t know where it comes from. It’s just in my personality and I give it to them.”

But Regins supplies more than just talk and laughs. Her game is no laughing matter.

The motor that powers her mouth also drives her when she gets on the floor. It’s a motor that allows her to never stop running and jumping and battling and diving… whatever it takes for as long as it takes to try to win.

“I basically bring energy wherever it’s needed, whether it’s on the court, off the court, on the bench, practice. I’m ready when my time’s called,” she said. “It means a lot to me to bring that type of energy to the team.”

It’s a seemingly endless supply of energy is why her teammates call her the Energizer Bunny.

“Chelsea brings energy and excitement to the team,” said sophomore guard Mo Bennett. “The level of intensity of the game changes when she enters. She brings a whole new level of passion to the court.”

“She comes to work,” added Blue. “She brings her best effort every time she steps on the court. She’s doing all the things that are going to give her a successful year and help us as a team.”

Often that means doing the dirty work.

In each of Tech’s first two games this season, she has had a share of the game-high for offensive rebounds.

The bigger the game, the bigger Regins plays. Last season, as a freshman, two of her best games came against Oklahoma in the second round of the NCAA Tournament, when she grabbed six rebounds in 10 minutes, and in the Jan. 22nd upset of then-No. 2 North Carolina, when she came off the bench and scored six points in 21 minutes.

While Tech entered this season ranked 19th in the country, the Jackets still consider themselves the hunter in the ACC. It’s a role that Regins relishes.

“I feel like as the hunter you’re only as good as you allow yourself to be,” she said. “We are hungry and we are out to prove something. We’re out to let people know that we’re not just Georgia Tech. We want to be amongst the elite, as well. The Dukes and the North Carolinas, those are just the girls that want it. In order to get there you have to want it more. So you want to go out there and get it.”

Anyone who stands in Regins’ way is going to get an earful. Anyone.

“It really doesn’t matter who you are, if you’re the top player in the league or one of the lowest, it really doesn’t matter to me,” she said. “If I’m in the game and I’m in the moment and I’m doing what I need to do as far as my role, you’ll get it. Any type of trash talking that I can give you, you’re going to get it.”

“It’s nothing personal,” she added with a laugh. “It’s just basketball.”

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