Utah Women’s Basketball Aims To Give ‘5% More’ For Gianna Kneepkens

Dec 6, 2023, 8:08 PM | Updated: Dec 7, 2023, 9:10 am

SALT LAKE CITY – Utah women’s basketball received some devastating news about star guard Gianna Kneepkens earlier in the week and have now vowed to give “5% More” in her honor.

Kneepkens will be out the remainder of the 2023-24 season after suffering a season-ending injury in a non-contact situation last weekend against rival BYU.

The Utes are on the road this week taking on St. Joseph’s on December 7 and then facing No. 1 South Carolina on Sunday, December 10.

Kneepkens’ jersey number is No. 5.

Utah WBB Taking A Less Sad Que From Utah Football

Utah football has famously adopted the term “22% Better” since 2021 in honor of fallen athletes Ty Jordan and Aaron Lowe who both wore the No. 22. Jordan and Lowe were best friends before joining the Utes and tragically died almost nine months to the day apart.

The mantra has helped lead the football team to back-to-back Pac-12 Championships and Rose Bowl appearances in 2021 and 2022. It also kept the team focused despite a myriad of injuries this past season to an 8-4 regular season record and Las Vegas Bowl berth.


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Kneepkens’ season-ending injury is in no way as dire or permanent as what Utah football faced with Jordan and Lowe (nor would anyone ever suggest that) but is a nice way to keep the team and No.5 engaged in what could be another big season for the Utah women.

Last season the Utah women’s basketball team finished with a Pac-12 regular-season championship (first in their history) and Sweet 16 appearance with a loss to the eventual National Champion LSU Tigers.


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The Utes returned most of the same talent this season while also upgrading the roster in a few spots. Kneepkens was expected to be a big part of the effort to repeat and do a little more in the 2023-24 calendar year before her season was cut short last week.

Utah’s reminder to give “5% More” will hopefully not only help Kneepkens through her recovery but remind the team as a whole of the bigger picture when the season gets tough. (As it inevitably will.)

Michelle Bodkin is the Utah Utes Insider for KSLsports.com and host of both the Crimson Corner Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and The Saturday Show (Saturday from 10 a.m.–12 p.m.) on The KSL Sports Zone. Follow her on XInstagram, and Threads: @BodkinKSLsports

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Utah Women’s Basketball Aims To Give ‘5% More’ For Gianna Kneepkens