Duke's All-America guard has 2,067 career points, just 165 shy of the the school's women's record held by Chris Moreland. The Blue Devils are ranked No. 4.
SI: Are you comfortable with people calling you the best player in the country?
Beard: Yeah, because that's what I want to be.
SI: How confident are you that Duke can win the national title this year?
Beard: Very confident. We have everything we need. We have an inside game and perimeter play. We have a point guard and a rebounding attack. And we have depth.
SI: You once said that if you could be on the cover of any magazine, it would be FORTUNE. What's the headline?
Beard: " Alana Beard: The Second Wealthiest African-American Woman in the World Behind Oprah Winfrey"!
SI: You've gone from being homesick and shy as a freshman and sophomore to being a very confident senior. What's helped you change and grow?
Beard: I always kept to myself. I was antisocial. But I've developed a group of friends who force me to talk and have fun, and they know nothing about basketball. That's the best thing any athlete can do: get friends that don't know anything about your sport and accept you as just another friend and not because you're that
SI: You grew up playing on a dirt court in your backyard in Shreveport, La. What's the key to beating your opponent on a dirt court?