No surprise: Washington’s Kelsey Plum headlines Starting Five
Stepping inside Sydney Wiese‘s childhood bedroom also means stepping into “controlled chaos.”
Posters of icons ranging from former NBA and college stars Steve Nash and Jimmer Fredette to Hollywood heartthrob Robert Pattinson are plastered all over the blue walls and ceiling. Strategically placed motivational messages are handwritten in various colors. At least 20 basketballs, many of them flat after an unfortunate encounter with a cactus, are stuffed under the bed.
It’s a time capsule of sorts, since Wiese has not lived here full-time in nearly four years. But it gives a glimpse inside the Oregon State senior point guard’s mind and heart while morphing into one of the nation’s premier women’s basketball players for a team aiming to make another deep NCAA Tournament run.
From the Undefeated’s Andrew Maraniss: Diamond DeShields, daughter of former MLB player Delino DeShields, wants to be the No. 1 pick in the WNBA draft
What have you done that’s different from what people expected?
For one, transferring. Life was good for me, I was playing well, but [North Carolina] just wasn’t for me. I wasn’t about to settle for a situation that looked good from the outside but wasn’t good for me. Also, a lot of times reporters and people talk about how well-spoken I am and it is almost as if they didn’t think I would be. I don’t know if that’s the case or not, but I really do pride myself on my speaking ability and the way I come off to others. I always try to make a good impression.
Do you feel like that response has a racial undertone?
Possibly. Especially being that I come from a family of athletes … We’re all working to break those racial stereotypes.
As great a player as senior guard Alexis Peterson is for the Syracuse women’s basketball team now, it wasn’t that long ago when her primary view of the team’s games came from the bench.
Peterson was a four-star recruit out of Columbus, Ohio, but as a freshman she played only 12.3 minutes per game for Syracuse. She started just one game.
Her potential was clear, but, to hear her tell it, it took awhile for her to understand the college game and for her window to open.
Yea, Sherri’s kid: A MESSAGE TO A YOUNGER SELF – The lessons learned after four years can be numerous. Seniors Peyton Little, T’ona Edwards, Derica Wyatt, Shaya Kellogg and Gioya Carter tell their younger selves the valuable lessons they’ve learned in their Sooner career.
Florida’s Martin Fennelly writes: Yes, UConn’s winning streak is good for women’s basketball
It’s good for the game. We wouldn’t even be talking about women’s college basketball, ever, without UConn. OK, maybe when Baylor coach Kim Mulkey opens her mouth and something idiotic comes out. But mostly we wouldn’t care. The UConn women are another story.
You just have to accept that there are two worlds. There is the world of women’s college basketball that is wildly competitive. “There’s much more parity, that’s for sure,” USF coach Jose Fernandez said. Then there is UConn’s world. There is the Big Blue Machine.
Two hours before Monday’s game, Tony Russo and his wife were setting up a tailgate out of the back of their car.
A tailgate for a women’s basketball game in Tampa.
Only for UConn.
Looking ahead at a crowded awards field: The 2017 Naismith Women’s College Player of the Year Semifinalists have been selected
Doug has some input: A look at possible award winners in women’s hoops
Did you watch this? ESPN’s “When I Play”
How about Devereaux Peter’s fabulous “Down and Dirty“? Love her humor and analysis.
Thanks, coach! Nevada head coach Jane Albright announces retirement
As we go into Conference Tourney time, it’s lovely to see two new names rising: Drake and Belmont lead way in final espnW mid-major poll of the season
The teams listed below have played nearly 300 total games, providing a pretty good sample size to assess them. Yet in most cases, each respective season now depends on what happens in two or three games in the days ahead. Such is the mid-major existence, when three days in March can either confirm or erase four months of work.
So for one last time before the NCAA tournament, let’s get to the rankings.
Wanna know a little more about coach Jennie Baranczyk’s Bulldogs? Ask Graham, who writes Seniors Lizzy Wendell and Caitlin Ingle are a class to remember at Drake
Caitlin Ingle and Lizzy Wendell didn’t know each other when they committed their basketball futures to Drake University. Little did anyone else know that the partnership they forged would outperform just about every other recruiting class in the nation.
A trip to the NCAA tournament is all that’s missing for two players who, at least as measured by points and assists, have done more than almost all of their peers. And they’re working on that tourney appearance.
Mechelle’s excited about the Competitive Power 5 conference tournaments about to tip off Championship Week
Charlie Creme, espnW’s bracketologist, is projecting eight teams each from the ACC and SEC will get bids to the NCAA tournament. With that many likely headed to the Big Dance, it should mean very competitive league tournaments coming up this week — and also some teams that could really help or hurt themselves.
Some coaches love conference tournaments; some hate them. And how the NCAA committee weighs the results isn’t always consistent year to year. But from the fans’ standpoint, the league tournaments can be a fun time to see a lot of teams in the same place, and maybe a few surprises.
Let’s take a quick look at the tournaments for the Power 5 conferences, all of which decide their champions Sunday or Monday.
While Connecticut rolls along with a 104-game winning streak and reigns as the No. 1 team in NCAA women’s basketball, the Pac-12 Conference has its own No. 1 ranking, as in Rating Percentage Index, making it the toughest conference in women’s basketball.
And the conference is basking in the positive publicity surrounding Washington’s Kelsey Plum, who became the NCAA all-time scoring leader after getting 57 points last week against Utah to accumulate 3,397 points in her career.
So get ready for lots of suspense and unpredictability when the Pac-12 tournament begins Thursday at KeyArena in Seattle.
Thanks, LaChina, who goes “Beyond the Power Five”(ESPN, you might want to fix the link), but more importantly, she has a GREAT conversation with Mechelle Voepel about Kim Mulkey.