Coco and Kelly Miller are identical twins who have grown apart only slightly in the 21 years since they were the same zygote. Now freshmen at Georgia, they share a dorm room, wear their ponytails the same length and dress from a communal closet, cultivating an appearance so similar that their father, Marv, can't always tell them apart. They even make the same grades, all A's and one B cumulatively over four years at Mayo High in Rochester, Minn., and an A and two B's in identical premed classes in their first quarter at college. They're so close, in fact, that they have never spent a night under different roofs.
The Millers each tallied 24 points in the Lady Bulldogs' season opener against Boise State, and their scoring totals have either matched or been within a basket of doing so in five other games for Georgia, which was 10-4 and ranked No. 18 heading into Wednesday's game with top-ranked Tennessee. Lanky 5'10" guards who can touch the rim, the Millers rank among the SEC's top 10 in scoring (Coco at 19.1 points per game, Kelly at 17.9) and assists (Kelly 6.1, Coco 4.7). Kelly also is in the SEC's top five in free throw shooting (83.8%) and steals (2.6 per game). On Dec. 6 Coco dropped 45 points on Charleston Southern to set a Lady Bulldogs record.
The Minnesota twins complete a triple double for Georgia coach Andy Landers: They are his third set of identical sisters in his 23 seasons of coaching. Over the years he has seen a dozen other identical pairs play and can recall only one duo—Pam and Paula McGee, All-Americas on two national title teams at USC in the early 1980s—whose vast talents were as closely matched as the Millers'.
For all their similarities, the Millers aren't duplicate players. Coco, who plays on the wing, is the better defender, while Kelly, the point guard, is a better passer. "Kelly is more calculating," Landers says. "She'll go around you. Coco is going to take it right over top of you if she has to." Still, their games are interchangeable enough that in high school, they switched jerseys for a practice, and their coach didn't notice.
The Millers earned starting spots on the Mayo High team as eighth-graders and subsequently helped the Spartans win two state crowns. As seniors, Kelly was ranked the No. 3 college prospect in the country and Coco No. 11 by one recruiting service, and they never considered splitting up. The fact that last year's starting five at Georgia were all seniors and had to be replaced was a definite plus. "We wanted someplace we'd be able to play quite a bit as freshmen," Kelly says.
The Lady Bulldogs get 36 minutes of Miller time per twin per game, thus it was odd for Coco to find herself sisterless on the court for most of the second half of last Saturday's 81-70 win over LSU. Kelly had picked up her fourth foul three minutes after halftime and was on the bench. With little more than four minutes to play, Landers reunited the twins. Kelly finished with a flourish, canning two long jumpers on setups that define the Millers' lives on and off the court: assists from a sister.