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Archive for March, 2012

Well, the NCAA has, too:

Denver (AF) – The NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Committee today announced new rules governing the transfers between Division I women’s basketball programs, taking effect immediately. According to the committee, these changes are intended to improve the level of parity in college women’s basketball.

“We just looked at the results and knew we had to do something,” said Greg Christopher, chair of the committee. “It wasn’t just having all those one seeds in the Final Four, or even all of those 1-2 matchups in the Elite 8, but the scores in those games were almost embarrassing.”

According to Christopher, under the new rules, student athletes who wish to “transfer down” will be subject to liberalized rules intended to foster player movement. Student athletes who wish to “transfer up” will be required to meet current requirements and, in some cases, will be prohibited from transferring at all.

The new rules provide that a student who wishes to transfer from a team that reached the Elite 8 in the preceding national championship tournament may transfer to any team that did not finish in the Elite 8 and begin to play immediately. The same rule will apply to a student who played for a team that won at least one game in the tournament and wishes to transfer to a team that did not win any games in the tournament.

“We were inspired by what Tina Martin has done at Delaware,” explained Carolayne Henry of the Mountain West Conference, who is the incoming chair of the committee. “We saw how she used transfers to take her team from being an also ran in a mediocre conference to a top ten ranking. Not everybody can have an Elena Della Donne fall into their laps, but even a few players like Raven Ferguson could help out a lot of teams. Look what Kevin McGuff did with Dee Dee Jernigan, at least until the end of that game.” (more)

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are announced.

And more:

Brittney Griner is AP Player of Year

Kim Mulkey named top coach

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Aston to Texas.

Flashback to last year.

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Long day of travel, but I’m now safely ensconced in the Mile High City.

A little catchup before tomorrow’s games:

From Richard Deitsch: Women’s Final Four coaches talk teams’ strengths, biggest concerns

Elliot Almond at the Mercury News: Baylor’s Brittney Griner presents an imposing obstacle to Stanford women’s NCAA title hopes

From the Dallas News: Baylor’s Brittney Griner ready to fulfill large promise

From Mechelle: Baylor feeling perfectly relaxed – Perfection aside, 38-0 Lady Bears just focused on winning national championship and Despite illness, Mulkey keeps it light – Baylor’s coach has visible symptoms, but takes comical approach Saturday

Elliot also has: Nneka and Chiney Ogwumike’s Stanford University sisterhood coming to an end

Tom FitzGerald at the San Francisco Chronicle: Ogwumikes put Cardinal front and center in Final Four

Michelle writes: For Ogwumike, it’s now or never – Nneka makes her fourth trip to Final Four, craves first title

Summer McKesson at the NCAA: UConn relishes role of underdog: Without superstar or loaded roster, Huskies still in title hunt

Graham has: You again?! Irish-Huskies, Round 4 and Dolson’s play peaking at right time

Fagan has: Big stage awaits Skylar Diggins

Nate at Swish Appeal has: Notre Dame’s Rebounding Balance Key Against UConn In NCAA Women’s Final Four

From Al Lesar at the SBT: Only one way to silence Geno

From Curt at the SBT: Pride fuels defense

From HoopFeed: Pink Room Webcast: Final Four Preview with Ros Gold-Onwude & Kevin Danna

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Mechelle somehow finds the brain space to write about the US National Team: Wealth of luxuries for Team USA

With that much firepower spread out to cover every spot on the floor, the Americans could just spot the rest of the world a player. Of course, they’re not going to do that. So the last position, which will be filled this summer, could be used as much for the purpose of preparing for the next Olympics as it is for competing in these upcoming Games.

“Our job at USA Basketball is not only to win a gold medal this year, but also to make sure that we’re doing what we need to do in 2016, 2020,” Auriemma said. “So we’re not just picking the best team for this year, which obviously is the No. 1 goal, but we also want to be conscious of, ‘What do we need to do to keep this thing not only where it is, but to get it even better?'”

She also wonders: So, what about Cappie Pondexter?

Why wasn’t Pondexter, who is definitely one of the top scoring guards in the world, one of the 11 named? Callan and U.S. coach Geno Auriemma, who isn’t on the selection committee, said it was just a part of the tough process of putting together the team.

Yet there is also the fact that Pondexter didn’t play in the 2010 World Championships; she told USA Basketball back then that she was too tired from her just-completed WNBA season to compete. However, Pondexter did attend Fashion Week in New York City during the time the U.S. team was practicing for those worlds, which did raise some eyebrows.

Callan on Friday tried to defuse speculation that Pondexter’s choice back then was in any way related to USA Basketball’s decision for 2012. But, if nothing else, it did help make way for a player such as Lindsay Whalen to get a spot on the 2010 world championship team, and now she is one of the Olympians.

 

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Recipient Of 2012 Nancy Lieberman Award

Speaking of point guards, did you catch this piece from the Washington Post on Kara Lawson? West Springfield and Tennessee grad, shows “smart, thoughtful” side on ESPN broadcasts

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Kate Fagan and Luke Cyphers: Women continue to shatter stereotypes as athletes. So how come they can’t catch a break as coaches?

Since 2000, NCAA programs have added 1,774 women’s head coaching jobs. Men have filled 1,220 of the openings.

Women have entered the rest of the workforce at all levels and now make up 57 percent of college students. Sports are bigger than ever for them too, with an average of 8.73 women’s teams per school.

And yet female coaches continue to be sidelined. Stanford women’s basketball coach Tara VanDerveer is only half-joking when she says, “We’ll have a female president — and one woman coaching women’s college basketball.”

It’s not as if women are finding new opportunity in the men’s game: Only about 3 percent of men’s teams are coached by women, the same percentage as before Title IX’s passage. Coaching is a man’s world.

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