Not only has Diggins, a three-time All-American, led her team to back-to-back national championship appearances with her incredible talent, strength and perseverance, she also has raised the profile of women’s college basketball on and off the court.
More than 275,000 people follow her on Twitter, which made Diggins the most-followed NCAA student-athlete ever. Some unquestionably are drawn to Diggins’ fiery take-no-prisoners play, but many are crushing on the woman who makes a camouflage headband look like a fashion statement.
“I don’t know if they follow me because they think I am good at basketball or I don’t fit what they think a woman basketball player is supposed to look like,” Diggins says. “I love to play like a guy and look like a woman.”
But when asked where she gets her model-type looks from, Diggins simply points to her mother, Renee Scott.
“She’s the beautiful one — all 5 foot nothin’, 100 and nothin’,” she says. “I’m just the poor man’s version of her.”
Renee Scott typically avoids the limelight and likes to stick to things behind the scenes. But make no mistake, she has a competitive edge too. According to Diggins, the family had to play board or card games until their mother prevailed.
“Mom was mom, she was not your friend,” her husband Maurice Scott says. Mom had strict rules including an 11 p.m. curfew her senior year of high school, a signed contract prohibiting anyone else from driving her car and a ban on the word “can’t.” “Skylar never had any trouble following them,” Scott says.
It was growing up in that structured environment that allowed Skylar to push harder and flourish.
Digging recently tweeted something she remembered from her mom: “I remember my mom telling I was “worried about the wrong things” years ago. STUCK with me.”
Although Renee loves basketball, it did not come first in her household. “If your grades weren’t right, there was no basketball,” she says. “If Skylar didn’t have the grades, she would have never gotten into a school like Notre Dame.”
Before turning pro, all that talk about Diggins leaving Notre Dame early to turn pro was just rumors, mother and…