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Archive for February, 2017

Where to begin?

Ya go on vacation, and all sorts of interesting things happen. Before we can talk about the games on the court, let’s talk about the games off it….

So, about Ms. Wiggins’ comments …and lack of further comment.(Amid backlash, Wiggins stands by her controversial comments)

Wiggins described what she said was a “very, very harmful” culture in the WNBA – one in which she contends she was bullied throughout her eight-year career. 

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“Me being heterosexual and straight, and being vocal in my identity as a straight woman was huge,” Wiggins said. “I would say 98 percent of the women in the WNBA are gay women. It was a conformist type of place. There was a whole different set of rules they (the other players) could apply.

Wiggins said she was disheartened by a culture in the WNBA that encouraged women to look and act like men in the NBA.

As many have said below, one is hard pressed to deny someone’s emotions or feelings. So let’s talk a little bit about bullying. As someone who uses theater as a teaching tool, primarily in schools, it’s not surprising that bullying is a topic that we’ve addressed. Per the stopbullying.gov site:

Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Bullying includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally, and excluding someone from a group on purpose.

For instance, when we created a curriculum for early childhood students it included a character whose bullying actions escalated across a four-day residency.

  • First, they mocked another character’s name (Yuki became Yucky, Mucky, Yuki)
  • Then they mocked that character’s ability and moved to exclude him. (You can’t dance, you can’t even drum, really-you shouldn’t participate at all)
  • Finally, they physically intimidated the character, mocking their fear

Because the bullied character often feels helpless, speaking up in their own defense is a huge hurdle. Our work looked an engaging the bystanders (the students in the classrooms) to 1) recognize the behavior of the bullies and the impact on the bullied and 2) move from a community of bystanders to a community of active protectors/defenders.

Bullying is not exclusive to the school environment. Some readers may be able to identify a bully in your workplace. Per the WBI, Workplace Bullying is repeated, health-harming mistreatment of one or more persons (the targets) by one or more perpetrators. It is abusive conduct that is :

So, when Wiggins says she was bullied, it means that

  • She felt disempowered
  • She encountered aggressive behavior from multiple players and coaches across the league, including the staff of the teams she played for: Lynx, Shock (’13), Sparks (’14), Liberty (’15)
  • She endured verbal threats and/or attacks
  • She was excluded from groups
  • Her work on the court was undermined
  • She didn’t feel she could go to Human Resources to address her issues
  • No one who witnessed what she was experiencing came to her aid

Again, I won’t deny what she says she experienced, but (even though this makes me sound like a denier) I’ve got to admit that when this story first broke my gut reaction was “what league was she talking about?”

If you’ve followed the WNBA since it’s inception, you’ll remember a huge initial support from the gay community. You’ll also remember huge frustration from the gay community about the league being unwilling to acknowledge/celebrate/recognize that support. There were plenty of discussions around who the league promoted and why. Simply put, it was straight women. And if they had kids? Even better. The consequences of the league’s “blind eye” was that many gay fans felt ignored and disrespected. The result? “You want my money but ignore who I am? Fine, I’ll give up my season tickets.”

As someone who semi-stalked the Liberty players during those early years, it was clear there were gay and straight women on the team. It also seemed clear, as far as I could tell, that the team was tight knit. There was also some “self-policing” when it came to public demonstrations of affection. I don’t know if this applied to the straight folks, but I do recall it becoming a bone of contention with one of the players and her partner in that she felt she was being silenced. Others on the team said it was not about “gay” or “straight,” it was about professional comportment.

When I was fortunate enough to be able to cover the Liberty (and, occasionally, other teams), if players weren’t talking about the game on the court they were talking about being role models – both to the fans and to the up-and-coming players. Early on in the league’s existence, it seemed players themselves were reluctant to speak about their sexuality. No doubt, some of that was connected to league pressure (real or perceived). Some of that had to do with place and time – “what does who I love have to do with my missed free throw?” Some of it had to do with not wanting to expose themselves to scrutiny and its possible repercussions.

Over the years, both society and the league have moved into a more open and inclusive stance. It seems like the younger players are more comfortable not only publicly acknowledging who they love, but actively engage the public in challenging discussions. Perhaps the dominant norm makes people uncomfortable – or jealous that attention is being given to someone else? Who knows….

But when Wiggins says “the WNBA that encouraged women to look and act like men in the NBA” I was flummoxed. Was she talking about on-court attitude and aggressiveness. But wasn’t that something she was known for?  Perhaps it was clothing off court? So I thought I’d do some unscientific research focused on draft days since she entered the league – ’cause that’s the time the W would likely bring the most pressure to bear. I’ve put up the links, you decide if the league is encouraging the players to “look and act like men.”

2016 draft.
2015 draft.
2014 draft.
2013 draft.
2012 draft.
2011 draft.
2010 draft.
2009 draft.
2008 draft included Candace Parker, Sylvia Fowles and Candice Wiggins.

While we’re waiting for Candice to answer questions about her statements, below are some reactions:

Tara: Tara VanDerveer defends WNBA from Candice Wiggins’ allegations

“I don’t know why someone would take the shots,” VanDerveer said. “The WNBA is a young league. It’s doing really well. It’s what we’ve experienced in women’s sports. … Women’s basketball is growing, but we still have a ways to go. We know this. It’s still a great game.”

Referring to Wiggins’ contention that 98 percent of WNBA players are gay, she said, “I don’t know that math was ever Candice’s strength. That to me sounds homophobic and negative.”

Geno: Geno Doesn’t See Same Women’s Game Candice Wiggins Complains About

“Since 1996 when this league was founded, I’ve never in 20 years ever heard a player ever, ever, ever say anything remotely resembling what has been said by Candice Wiggins,” Auriemma said.

Mike T and Co. in the Washington Post: Mystics rebuke Candice Wiggins comments on bullying and sexuality in WNBA

“I thought it was irresponsible and inaccurate on her part, and I only see self-serving in it,” said Thibault, the winningest coach in league history. “She played long enough that if she had issues, those are things to bring to somebody’s attention. Number two, she talks about being called names, and I think if you go back and look at her writing, there is a reason for some of that.”

“She degraded and criticized a league that has always supported her and even gave her a platform on topics that directly affected her life, such as HIV,” [Natasha] Cloud wrote in an email from Australia, where she is playing during the WNBA offseason. “She disrespected and demeaned a certain group of women to whom sexual preferences are different than hers, backing every simple-minded stereotype out there about women’s sports.”

Imani Boyette: Sky’s Imani Boyette ‘disappointed’ in Candice Wiggins’ ‘gay’ comment and Dear Candice

First, I was sad because that was your reality. I’m sorry you were bullied and felt that way during your career. Bullying is serious and no one deserves it. I hope you know that says more about the people who chose to mistreat you than you yourself. I hope one day your love for this sport returns, even if only as a spectator. I don’t know you personally nor was I there so I can’t deny your experiences nor would I try to. But I will defend a league I grew up with and am now a part of. Have you or did you ever reach out to the union? Did you confront these women?

Candice, I’m disappointed in you. We should be careful of who we allow to share our stories. We must be sure they not only respect the other parties but do their due diligence and only print facts. You stated that, “98% of the women in the league are gay” – that’s not only false but it’s unfair. You retired last year, have you met all 144 of us and been privy to our private lives? In your “research” did you really find only 3 women were straight? Do you know that orientation is not binary? Do you understand what you’ve done?  You’ve reinforced unfair stereotypes. A person’s orientation is their own and their business. Now, because of your article, it is no longer out of bounds to ask WNBA players about their sexuality. Do they ask any male stars in the NBA about their sexuality? Is it even a conversation?

Monique Currie: Perception is Real: Candice Wiggins’ Truth

I can say in my eleven seasons in the WNBA I’ve never witnessed the kind of bullying Wiggins describes in her interview. This does not mean it did not happen but I’m proud to be apart of a league that supports inclusion and celebrates all players regardless of their race, religion or sexuality. We are a family made up of players that love and respect the game of basketball. We are dedicated to growing the game and our league through integrity, honesty and hardwork. I feel awful that Candice had these experiences while playing in the WNBA but I encourage her to not only speak out about the negative aspects of her career but also shed light on how we can prevent this from ever happening again.

Kayte Christensen: Why I Disagree With Candice Wiggins

Wiggins said that many players were jealous of her because she is “heterosexual and straight, and [is] vocal in [her] identity as a straight woman”. That perception of course looks to have severely shaped her experience in the WNBA.

Well, I’m also a straight woman who was in a serious relationship throughout the course of my 6-year career (which would qualify as being “vocal in my identity as a straight woman”) and never ONCE was there an issue with that. Never once was there any form of jealousy or bullying. My boyfriend and I were not only welcomed with open arms but we both spent significant time with my teammates off the court.

Is it possible that I was the exception? Hardly.

 

Breanna Stewart

“…I am not denying Candice her experience. I am truly sorry for any pain she has endured, but my time in the W has been very different,” Stewart tweeted. “I have found the WNBA to be one of the most affirming places you can be. Our league has been a leader on inclusion + progressive action… Let’s worry less about if 98% is “accurate” and ask why: Why does anybody care? Even if it was 100%, WHY DOES IT MATTER???”

espnW: WNBA has no comment, but many players dispute Candice Wiggins’ allegations of bullying culture

DeLisha Milton-Jones, who won two WNBA titles and appeared in more games than any player in league history, said she was baffled by Wiggins’ remarks. “I know Candice as a sweet, intelligent young lady,” said Milton-Jones, who now is an assistant coach at Pepperdine. “I don’t want to take anything from her experiences while in the league, so I can only speak for what I experienced firsthand. And it’s in complete contradiction of what’s been stated by Candice.

“The WNBA has allowed many of us to live a dream. I pray that Candice does find peace with her life and is able to move forward without devaluing or diminishing what’s been priceless to so many others in the league.”

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“I don’t want to discredit (Wiggins’) experience, if indeed she felt that,” Penicheiro said, per ESPN. “But ‘nobody cares about the WNBA’ and ’98 percent of the league is gay’ are completely false statements. So it’s harder for me to give her personal experience credibility when those things are completely false.”

Houston Chronicle: WNBA players see a different league than one described by Candice Wiggins: Wiggins’ derogatory remarks spur support for organization

The 31-year-old WNBA veteran was surprised to see the notifications on her phone last week. Something had happened to former WNBA player Candice Wiggins. She got her son settled in his high chair with cereal and apple juice and opened her laptop. The story was everywhere.

Wiggins told a newspaper in San Diego she had been bullied for being a straight woman in the WNBA, adding that the league was a “toxic” environment for her.

The veteran read the story twice, then three times.

“It was strange,” said the veteran, who spoke on condition of anonymity. “I wanted to reach out and see how I could help. I felt terrible she went through that. But I was also a little mad. I played in the WNBA five seasons. I always felt supported. I always felt proud of what we were doing and what we stood for.”

The Prez: W.N.B.A. President Says She Was ‘Stunned and Disappointed’ by Candice Wiggins’s Comments

Of course, it concerns me if any of our players do not have a positive experience and I hope that anyone who feels uncomfortable would reach out to me or others in the league office.”

She added: “In my time with the league and my capacity as a fan before that, I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know a group of highly competitive women who are driven to succeed at the highest level on the court and constantly striving to help create opportunity for all members of their communities. In keeping with that, I’ve found our players to be earnest, heartfelt and eloquent in their responses to Candice’s comments and, as always, clear in their commitment to our league’s core values of diversity, inclusion and respect.”

Mechelle: Bullying And Stereotypes In The WNBA

…the other thing about this is that it – I just have to say, this sort of demonizes LGBT people. Again, the idea that they were in this league as sort of predators and people who were mean to straight people and, you know, had formed their own kind of culture – I think those are really damaging stereotypes. And there’s been nothing that I’ve seen in covering the league since it started that would corroborate those.

Nneka: WNBA MVP talks former player’s accusations: ‘It’s nothing new to us’

“It’s nothing new to us. I guess in my experience with the WNBA, it’s nothing I haven’t heard before as far as the stigma,” Ogwumike said. “But when it comes to someone else’s experience, you can never speak to someone’s experience. I think as newly appointed president it’s definitely my job to represent the inclusiveness that we stand for.”

She said it hurt to hear someone had that type of experience — but thinks Wiggins could have expressed her concerns in a more constructive way “so that those who might have been the perpetrators or those that might be able to help can help in that situation.”

My second “What the hell” moment was when Baylor coach Kim Mulkey spouted off.

WATCH: Baylor’s Kim Mulkey sounds off concerning school’s reputation
Kim Mulkey blasts Baylor critics, defends university
Kim Mulkey gives awful post-game speech about Baylor scandal
‘Knock them … in the face’, Baylor coach says of parents afraid to enroll daughters
Baylor coach Kim Mulkey ‘tired of hearing’ about scandal scrutiny
Baylor coach Kim Mulkey defends school amid sexual assault scandal
Baylor’s Kim Mulkey: Knock Parents Concerned About Sexual Assault Scandal “Right In The Face”
Kim Mulkey offers defense of Baylor amid sex assault scandal by encouraging assault

Backlash:


What? Baylor Women’s Hoops Coach tells fans to Punch Baylor Critics??
Baylor Coach Under Fire For Controversial Comments About Bears’ Scandal
Kim Mulkey comments put Baylor’s reputation ahead of sexual-assault concerns
Baylor women’s coach Kim Mulkey so wrong to tell fans to attack BU critics
Kim Mulkey’s remarks knock Baylor one step back
OU women’s basketball: Oklahoma’s Coale ‘disappointed’ in Kim Mulkey’s comments
Baylor’s Kim Mulkey was out of line with her comments on Saturday
Kim Mulkey should be ashamed of herself for post-game speech about Baylor scandal
Rape victims advocate: Baylor coach Kim Mulkey ‘like Art Briles in a woman’s body’ after comments
After Baylor Is Hit With Lawsuit Alleging 52 Rapes by Football Team, Basketball Coach Leaves Parents Fuming

Then:

Baylor coach Kim Mulkey walks back her message about sexual-assault scandal
Baylor’s Mulkey apologizes, clarifies remarks in ESPNW column
Kim Mulkey regrets ‘knock them right in the face’ statement but stands by defense of Baylor
Mulkey clarifies her Saturday remarks

I call bullsh*t. You put your University over your students. You want me to believe differently? Get your azz on the front lines and advocate for a clear, transparent vetting of your athletic department. 

“I think [the BU regents’] silence speaks volumes about their disdain and disregard for the concerns of the Baylor family and the greater Waco community,” Trotter said. “If they came down from their ivory tower, they might realize the level of mistrust they’ve created among all of us.”

Strong comments from two strong-willed women, each making some valid points. And if Mulkey accurately sums up the exasperation many feel in wanting to move on, perhaps she can use her considerable influence in the Baylor family and among leadership to prompt the answers that faithful alumni such as Trotter say are overdue. Mulkey may be “in the know,” but many are not. Nor are many likely to move on so long as doubt about Baylor’s past dogs its future.

Okay. Now that we got that off my chest, let’s get back to celebrating the game on the court.

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Dunno who’s more upset…

#6 Texas, # 8 Stanford or me having to come home from Bonaire. The last of SCUBA:

I do know the boys are waiting….

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Almost done with…SCUBA

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Yes, basketball, but….SCUBA!

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SCUBA!

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I’m (almost) ready to go!”

Yup, February Board of Ed Break in NY means it’s time for my annual SCUBA trip. Off on Saturday and back on Saturday. Please don’t start the impeachment hearings until I get back.

Before I go, some things to keep you busy:

Listen Up! Lachina: Rebecca Lobo chats about UCONN’s 100th consecutive win, being a part of the Huskies family, Geno Auriemma’s coaching legacy.

Listen Up! Howard (dang, it’s hard to keep up!):

Breanna Stewart talks about her journey to China, how offseason changes alter her role on the Seattle Storm, and what she plans to do for an encore in the year ahead.

Harvard coach Kathy Delaney-Smith, the winningest head coach in Ivy League history, talks about fighting Title IX battles in the 1970s, her career arc, how the Ivy League has developed, her young, talented 2016-17 team, and where the game goes from here.

Listen Up! Richard: Kim Barnes-Arico taking Michigan to new heights

Listen Up! College Sports Now and Rebecca Lobo.

Games: 

Did I not mention they were wobbly? Huge win for Coach Abe as her UCF Knights knocked off #22 South Florida, 66-62. How huge?  Just the first win over ranked team in school history

Rider continues it’s nice run in the MAAC, defeating Marist, 65-46.

Don’t want to ignore the #2 Terps, even if they’re whomping Wisconsin. Ohio State looms.

Welcome to #24 Kansas State’s season – they get back into the poll, they get whacked. This time, it was a stumbling West Virginia doing the honors, 66-59.

With Maine and Albany having “transitional” seasons, New Hampshire is stepping into the void. They’re at 12-1 in the Am. East, and my Durham friends have noticed!

Belmont has moved to 14-0 in the OVC.

Say who? Western Illinois defeated South Dakota State. In his fifth year, coach JD Gravina’s team now sits atop the Summit.

Colorado State repelled Mountain West challenger Wyoming, 61-54. A tougher loss for the Cowgirls: Junior guard Liv Robert out with an ACL.

Sure, Notre Dame was “dealing with a short bench,” but the fact they only beat Clemson by four tells you a ton about what Coach Smith has been doing with the Tiger program (did I not tell you?)

Yes, Tennessee lost to Alabama, but let’s not bury the lede: Diamond took a whack to the head/neck and was taken off the court on a board. Sounds like she may be okay, but head-neck injuries are no joke.

Another significant injury: Shakayla Thomas’s shoulder put her in a sling. Wheels fell off #4 Florida State wagon and Virginia’s up and down season had an up(set). Cavaliers over the Seminoles, 60-51.

Hmmm… what’s up with #3 Mississippi State, looking ahead to the conference tournament? They’re lucky Georgia ran out of gas in the fourth – Bulldogs win, 58-49.

JINX! (Sorry Kim). #2o Michigan falls to Indiana, 72-61.

#23 TAMU continues to confound. They lose to LSU, 67-63.

The WWC continues to try and keep it interesting: Loyola Marymount over Saint Mary’s with authority, 72-57 (Remember – LMU beat BYU) and USF beat Gonzaga.

Wright State and Green Bay are heading to a showdown Feb 24th. That likely will be for Conference Tourney seeding – and some “wanna go to the NCAA tourney” mojo.

Speaking of showdowns, Western Kentucky got the season sweep over Middle Tennessee. C-USA tourney ought to be fun….

Ouch – Montana State (11-3) loses to Portland State (5-8).

“Hello, it’s…Drake:” Drake takes over top spot in espnW mid-major poll

You might have heard that Connecticut is still unbeaten in conference play — and every other kind of play. Maryland and Texas are similarly making runs at conference perfection in the Big Ten and Big 12, respectively.

But those three giants aren’t alone in their excellence. With only a handful of games remaining, Belmont (Ohio Valley), Drake (Missouri Valley), New Mexico State (WAC) and Penn (Ivy) are also close to wrapping up unbeaten conference seasons.

Three of the four appear below. Spoiler alert: sorry, Aggies.

Michelle Smith: Postseason resume assessment of Pac-12 teams as Hard work keeps Beavers at top of standings

Damnit: USM’s women’s basketball Joye Lee-McNeliscoach battling cancer

Step by Step: As Michigan women’s hoops soars, Barnes Arico trying to ease pressure

The biggest problem for Kim Barnes Arico these days: Everything may be going a little too smoothly.

Her Michigan women’s basketball team is 21-5 overall, the best start in program history.

The No. 20 Wolverines are 10-2 in the conference with four games remaining and can clinch the No. 3 seed or higher in the Big Ten tournament with a win at Thursday at Indiana.

Only twice in program history has U-M finished the conference season in third place or higher.

So what’s she worried about?

Interesting: USC coach Dawn Staley to critics: ‘Be fans, don’t be coaches’

Staley’s crew has heard from the online critics who panned what the team didn’t do at UConn. 

“We do got a lot of coaches out there that want to coach our basketball team,” she quipped. “But you can’t just coach on game days. Got to get in here, got to coach on waking up, losing to a team and then getting them back, psychologically. 

“Be fans, don’t be coaches, because there’s a lot that goes into coaching. It’s just not X’s and O’s.”

It involves stressing to the team that a championship can still be won without putting undue pressure on it.

Congrats: Texas named NCAA Team of the Week.

WNBA

Mini Mi! Phoenix Suns Sign Olympian Leilani Mitchell

Ciao (Thank you for the memories Bria Hartley! and welcome (An Elena Delle Donne and Emma Meesseman frontcourt will open up the Mystics’ playbook this season) from Bullets Forever.

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Talk about a Super Monday!

#10 Texas and #4 Florida State started off the night in style, as the Longhorns battled back from a deficit, got the lead only to see a clutch three from Leticia Romero send the game into overtime. Two extra periods later (and far too many missed free throws, kids!), the Longhorns earned the 92-88 victory.

“To be on the road in this type of environment and have the adversity — we had a lot of people in foul trouble — I thought our team showed a lot of toughness and resiliency,” Texas coach Karen Aston said.

Burnt Orange Nation says it’s Time to pay attention to Texas women’s basketball after double-OT W

The Texas Lady Longhorns traveled all the way to Tallahassee on short rest, played a 50-minute, double-overtime game last night, and came out 92-88 winners over the No. 4 Florida State Seminoles.

Did you watch? I admit I meant to and forgot. So today I’m committing, for the next few weeks, to relegate the men’s squad to second-affection status and hop on the Lady Longhorn bandwagon.

Next up, South Carolina pushed UConn on a night the Huskies should have been vulnerable. Nurse was hampered by a bad ankle, Samuelson was shooting blanks, and Collier was garnering fouls, and yet… Gabby Williams. Somehow, some way, the Huskies scratched out the 66-55 win and upped their record to 100 in a row.

Joe Ward, NY Times: UConn’s 100-Game Winning Streak, One Blowout at a Time

Harvey Araton, NY Times: With 100th Straight Win, Connecticut Women’s Team Redefines Dominance

Graham Hays, ESPN: UConn once again defies expectations in winning 100 consecutive games

Both teams missed shots they might make other nights, but it was South Carolina that made the mistakes — committed the turnovers and gave up the rebounds that decided the outcome. Connecticut didn’t beat itself. And no one else has proved capable of it.

“Our defense was not bad,” South Carolina coach Dawn Staley said. “I thought we did a really good job with that. It’s just we let our guard down, and when you let your guard down, a team like UConn is going to make you pay every time.”

She paused for a beat, then almost whispered the final two words again. Every time.

One hundred times in a row, for those counting.

David Cloninger, The State: No, UCan’t: No. 1 Huskies get past Gamecocks

It was working. The system was working.

But Connecticut disrupted a lot of systems in winning 99 consecutive games, and did it again in defeating No. 6 South Carolina for its 100th.

The Huskies (25-0) beat the Gamecocks 66-55 on Monday to extend their record for consecutive victories and let USC know that stopping them is a temporary solution.

Sports Illustrated: Athletes react to UConn’s 100th straight win

Friend of the sport, Richard Deitsch, Sports Illustrated: Geno Auriemma has UConn women living in 100-win fantasy land

Three weeks before the start of this year’s women’s college basketball season, UConn coach Geno Auriemma sat in his office contemplating the prospect of finishing this year without a loss. He considered the suggestion laughable, preposterous, pick your own adjective to describe such crazy.

“To think we will go undefeated this year, we would be setting ourselves up for failure,” Auriemma said. “Stewie [Breanna Stewart], Moriah Jefferson and [Morgan] Tuck were 151-5 in their career. That’s not the real world. How long do you think you can live that world? I don’t know when it is going to happen. It might happen early, it might happen late, but it’s going to happen. And I’m okay with it because we will coach them through it and they will see that’s the real world, and the world everyone lives in.”

Four months later, UConn remains in Fantasy Land.

Also from Richard: UConn’s 100th-Consecutive Win is Highest-Rated College Basketball Game on ESPN2 This Season UConn-South Carolina women’s hoops drew an 0.9 overnight rating, highest-rated CBB game on ESPN2 this season among men’s & women’s B-ball.

Ryan Cooper, NCAA.com: UConn women’s basketball wins 100th straight game, beats South Carolina 66-55

USA Today: No. 1 UConn tops South Carolina to extend record to 100 wins in a row

NBC: UConn Women’s Basketball Gets 100th Straight Win Against South Carolina

NPR: UConn Women Win Historic 100th Game In A Row

UConn Blog: UConn Women’s Basketball Overpowers South Carolina for #100, 66-55

Paul Doyle, Hartford Courant: UConn Wins No. 100 Just Like The Rest — With A Comfortable Margin Of Victory

“We’re one injury, couple fouls away from just being average at best,” Auriemma said.

So on a night when the UConn women’s basketball team stood under the bright lights with a celebrated milestone in front of it, Auriemma saw it unfold. One of his starters was hampered by an injury, a few of his core players picked up some untimely fouls, and his best scorer was simply not scoring.

Jim Fuller, New Haven Register: UConn women win 100th straight game, take down South Carolina

Just in case the stat line of Gabby Williams wasn’t impressive enough during the UConn women’s basketball program’s date with destiny, her Hall of Fame coach bestowed the compliments to end all compliments on the junior forward.

Not long after his team became the first NCAA basketball team to win 100 games in a row with a hard-earned 66-55 victory over No. 6 South Carolina before a sellout crowd of 10,167 at Gampel Pavilion on Monday night, UConn women’s basketball coach Geno Auriemma compared Williams’ majestic performance to the most offensively-talented player to suit up for him.

“You can’t explain Gabby Williams ever having any expectations of ever being Maya Moore and (having) a Maya Moore performance tonight exactly when she needed it, exactly when it needed to be done,” Auriemma said.

SB Nation: UConn women’s basketball wins its 100th straight game

Newsday: UConn women get tested early, beat South Carolina for 100th win in a row

UConn Today: 100 Facts About the Historic 100th Win by Women’s Basketball

Beth Maiman, NCAA.com: UConn women’s basketball: What was happening in the world the last time the Huskies lost?

Bleacher Report: UConn Women’s Basketball Team Records 100th Straight Win with Victory vs. USC

A 100-game winning streak is not supposed to happen in any sport at any time.

After all, there are salary caps, scholarship limits and parity-inducing draft orders in place to check such power, and that’s not even accounting for random factors such as luck and poor performances on any given day.

That’s what makes the Connecticut Huskies’ 100th straight win—which they notched Monday with a 66-55 victory over South Carolina—downright incredible. Injuries, strong opponents and even the graduation of superstar Breanna Stewart have not slowed them down, and a fifth straight national title seems like an inevitable conclusion to this ride.

Hartford Courant: Huskies Take Streak To Triple Digits Surrounded By Legends and UConn Women: The Past And Present Come Together For 100th Win In A Row

Journal Inquirer: Alum Stewart proud to still be part of it all at UConn

Swish Appeal: HUSKIES’ SPECTACULAR STREAK CONTINUES and History Made: What UConn’s 100th straight win means

Rhode Island Public Radio: UConn Women’s Basketball: New England’s Other Dynasty

SEC Country: Recap, box score from 66-55 loss at No. 1 UConn

South Carolina women’s basketball largely played the game it needed for the first 18 minutes Monday night against UConn.

But the rest of the game served as a reminder of why No. 1 UConn was playing for the first 100-game winning streak in Division 1 basketball history — and why the Huskies got the job done in a 66-55 win against No. 6 South Carolina (21-3, 11-1).

Greenville News: College basketball does regular season right

The University of South Carolina women’s basketball team will be a footnote in the history books. The Gamecocks suffered a 66-55 loss Monday night at the University of Connecticut. It was UConn’s 100th consecutive victory, the longest streak in NCAA history in any sport.

South Carolina may find no solace in the undesirable distinction of being UConn’s 100th victim. Yet, the Gamecocks are a fitting foe for the milestone.

South Carolina is ranked No. 6 in the USA Today Sports coaches poll. Even amid the conference schedule, both teams eagerly relished this enticing encounter. UConn has never cowered to protect its streak.

Good Men Project: Who Runs the (Basketball) World? U Conn.

Yahoo Sports: One hundred straight wins only hints at UConn’s dominance

Pulse/Business Insider: The 3 plays in sports everybody will be talking about today

ESPN: UConn prez: Huskies one of greatest success stories in American athletics

To get more specific, I think a lot of times people look at UConn women’s basketball and are not interested in particular players and their stories. These are really fabulous women who are going to rule the world someday. They are great students, leaders, and are excellent citizens of the community. I’d like to see a lot more emphasis on individual players and their achievements in addition to the team.

UConn Report: UConn Women’s Basketball Postgame – South Carolina

Silliness from Philly: Smallwood: Just give the trophy to UConn already

Philly.com: Geno Auriemma, UConn’s winning women’s basketball coach, got his start in Philly

NJ.com: UConn wins 100th straight | Rutgers’ C. Vivian Stringer weighs in on historic feat

.com: WNBA CONNections to The Streak

In other news: 

Follow up on an earlier story:  Golden Bears rally for Rama N’diaye after cancer diagnosis

At first, Rama N’diaye kept a secret from her loved ones and entire support system last summer: She had breast cancer.

Privacy is the cultural norm back home in Senegal, yet N’diaye quickly realized she would need everybody cheering her fight. She gathered the courage and reached out to former California basketball staff member Sarah Holsinger, now at Virginia working as associate athletic director of basketball administration for Joanne Boyle, the coach who recruited N’diaye to Berkeley more than a decade ago before leaving for Charlottesville.

“I was so amazed,” N’diaye said Sunday. “They came and they were there for me.”

Congrats: Texas’ Holmes named espnW National Player of the Week

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