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by Kevin Tresolini (boy, are we lucky to have him on the beat) Elena Delle Donne: I have no choice but to cope

Chronic Lyme disease symptoms – fatigue, achiness and a new fiend, tremors — have caused Delle Donne to miss 17 of the Chicago Sky’s last 18 WNBA games.

“This one was a little tougher,” the Ursuline Academy and University of Delaware product told The News Journal on Wednesday. “It was the same type of feeling, like fatigue and muscle aches, but I was also getting other symptoms, too. Like the brain fog was a lot stronger, where it’s hard to remember things or comprehend much. I was also having tremors, which I’ve never had before. I was shaky all over, especially my hands, when I was playing. It was just not good.

“I’ve been able to get rid of the tremors and some other things, but other stuff I’m going to have to play through.”

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Blizzard!

Snow day! (but not for me!) and a trip to D.C. for an Early Childhood Symposium.

Frozen doors on the Amtrak train up and back.

Leading my first “STEM” infused professional development with some amazing early childhood teachers (STEM and Storytelling – a match made for teaching!).

There was a Polar (Bear) Vortex.

I walked into a room and got a(nother) grant.

My mom called to say that the next time we have an argument, she’s going to order a traffic jam in my neighborhood. (Lucky for my neighborhood, we don’t argue much.)

Oh, and some basketball with more “TIM-BERRRRRS.”

#11 Oklahoma State lost to West Virginia, 71-67, giving the Cowgirls their first loss of the season. When the Mountaineers went up against Baylor, though, they couldn’t beat Sims.

NC State took down #20 Syracuse. That got the Wolfpack ranked 20th, but a horrible first half doomed them against #13 UNC. Even so, they’ve earned attention from  the AP and Mechelle: Wolfpack off to winning start

Florida took down then #6 Kentucky (and made the players cranky). And then #10 South Carolina added to the #9 Wildcat’s misery, defeating Kentucky 68-59.

Ignore’em at your peril: Texas A&M defeated #12 LSU, 52-48. Can I just say “Ick.” Aggies shot 34% , Tigers shot 26%.

They had a close call against Pacific, but #24 (ranked for the first time in program history) San Diego righted the ship and got a win. Not so lucky against Portland, which stomped the Toreros 72-52.

Michigan State took it to #16 Nebraska, 70-57.

Missouri defeated #25 Georgia. Yes, the Dawgs over-indulged on cupcakes.

Northwestern over #21 Purdue by a whisker.

Oh, and just a reminder… there are no upsets in women’s basketball…..

In other news, UConn continues to roll with wins over Memphis and Houston. Temple is next, but I’m sure folks are looking ahead to the Baylor game IN Waco.

The Irish are smiling. The Terps are too, probably ’cause they don’t face Notre Dame until the 27th.

Duke rolled the Orange.

Howard’s 27/18 helped Florida State escape Miami, 68-63.

Yes, that’s the Dons at 7-7.

Is anyone paying attention to the job coach Austin Parkinson is doing at IUPUI?

Hey! VCU looks to have recovered from the loss coach Cunningham. They’re at 14-2 (cause they lost to LaSalle?!?!).

Delaware hasn’t collapsed into nothing with EDD’s graduation. They’re now 10-3.

Army is putting together a nice season. As is Navy. Oh, oh…look out on January 11th!

Gosh, “my” Penguins are missing their old coach Bob Boldon. Who is, but the way, 6-7 over at Ohio. That matches their win total last year but, more importantly, they’re 3-0 at home, which is cool.

And yes, 3-9 San Diego State misses Beth Burns.

And yes, 1-14 UNC-Wilmington misses Cynthia Cooper.

How long will T-Spoon stay a Louisiana Tech?

Maine is 7-8. I’m just sayin’: Richard Barron.

Even though I’m still not sayin’ nothin’ about Fordham and Erin Rooney, the Rams did slip up v. Duquesne. But it’s lookin’ like a showdown with the Hawks is looming’.

Rutgers may have found their footing.

Ditto with Texas.

Look at that! The Quakers are atop the Ivy League. Princeton is up next. (Dum de dum, dum)

Debbie missed her game of the week: St. Francis (PA) v Central Connecticut State, 106-97.

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on espnW

Speaking of Chicago, at the Tribune Shannon Ryan thinks Loyola’s rolling dice on Swoopes

Another opening: Buchanan resigns as EIU women’s basketball coach

You stay put (until, perhaps, you get a better offer?): Dayton’s Jabir rewarded with extension and South Carolina, Staley agree to extension

Ouch: Sun Belt Conference Freshman of the Year Loryn Goodwin has left North Texas.

Nate does a little Monday Morning Quarterbacking on himself: 2013 WNBA Draft: Top undrafted prospects

After the past two WNBA drafts I’ve taken stock of some of the top undrafted players. This year, that includes three players we had been following throughout the 2012-13 NCAA season and a third who multiple people considered a first round pick.

At Full Court, Clays says Competence, not controversy, rules WNBA draft and  Mel says Top draft picks ready to become faces of the WNBA

With ESPN being the bridge in many ways through its other properties beyond telecasts that connects the NCAA and the WNBA when it comes to women’s basketball, network headquarters was the appropriate place to originate the highly anticipated draft that was beamed Monday night in a first-ever prime time window.

Draft day PHOTO GALLERY

Beginning last fall with its “Three to See” promotion focusing on collegiate superstars Brittney Griner of Baylor, Elena Delle Donne of Delaware, and Skylar Digggins of Notre Dame, ESPN kept the spotlight on the trio throughout the collegiate season and then transitioned the focus here on draft night with the correct assumption that the trio would be off the plate after the Phoenix Mercury, Chicago Sky, and Tulsa Shock made their picks at the top of selections in that order.

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Office of VP Biden@VP

Congrats Elena @De11eDonne on your amazing last-second shot against St. John’s last night — great moment for all @udbluehens fans. –VP

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Bring over the popcorn and pull up a seat.

CAA: Delaware (18-0) v. Drexel (14-4):12:30pm EST, ESPN3

From the Delaware Times: One more chance for Dragons against Delle-ware

From Mel: Drexel Upset Leads To CAA Title Showdown With Delaware

Horizon: Green Bay 17-1) v. Detroit (14-4): 1pm EST, ESPNU – Revenge is on their mind

From the Gazette: UWGB pumped for Detroit rematch, coach says

From the Detroit Free Press: Detroit Mercy women’s coach preaches cool as Titans face Phoenix

NEC: Monmouth (15-3) v. Sacred Heart (12-6): 3pmEST, ESPNU

From the Asbury Park Press: Palmateer lured mentor out of retirement, now has Monmouth one win from the NCAA tourney

From the Greenwich Times: SHU’s Taylor plenty tough, plenty good

MVC: Drake (9-9) v. Creighton (11-7): 3pm, ESPN3

From the Des Moines Register: Clark’s change to point sparks surge

From the World Herald: Tritz leads Jays to MVC final

Big South: High Point (12-5) v. Liberty (16-2): 4pm,  ESPN3

From Liberty: Warley Leads Liberty Into BSC Championship Game

From Radford: Radford Falls to High Point in Big South Finals

And who’s looking forward?

Washington State: WNBA eyes 2 Cougs; Adzasu aims for Olympics

Cal: Cal’s performance standards set high – Monitoring the overall condition of athletes can help to maximize results

Oregon State: Beavers now wait to see if they get WNIT bid

Tennessee: Slow starts a mind game for Stricklen – Lady Vols loosening up for tournament

Swish Appeal: Frances Pomeroy Naismith Award Winner Tavelyn James: Eastern Michigan’s Superstar

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you can see it here.

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Update on Melissa Jones: Woman played blind, with no regrets

In the blink of an eye, Melissa Jones nearly lost an eye. It was a loose basketball, there for the taking, and the Baylor senior did what she had done all her basketball life. She dove for the thing.

From SI’s Ben Glicksman: Could Delle Donne reinvigorate dormant Delaware athletics? (though the headline is not the subject written about)

Unintended consequences? From the Wall Street Journal: Where Have All the Fans Gone? The ACC, Long a College Basketball Hotbed, Is Seeing Empty Seats; The Realignment Blues

From Graham: Jude just fine as ‘Shoni’s sister’ – Both halves of Louisville’s Schimmel sister act happy in roles, contributing to Cardinals

You might know her by some of her other titles.

She’s the younger sister of Shoni Schimmel, the flashy, highlight-friendly University of Louisville sophomore star whose every 3-pointer — and there are a lot of them — at the KFC Yum Center is greeted with a signature call of “Threeeeeee, Shoni” from the public address announcer. No last name needed on those occasions.

She’s the other half of a sister act that serves as a source of pride to many Native Americans. Rare is the Louisville road game, whether played in Spokane or Pittsburgh, at which there aren’t at least a few people, and often something closer to a crowd, who show up solely to see two girls who grew up on the Umatilla reservation in Oregon.

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but it was so fine, they played triple overtime.

The West Lafayette fans got a show from Nebraska’s Hooper (27pts) and Moore (26pts) and watched their own Boilermakers keep coming back. But, in the end, the victory went to the Cornhuskers, as did a share of the B-10 top spot.

Staying with the theme o’ the day, Georgia Tech needed overtime to escape North Carolina, 75-68.

In the “imitation is the finest complement” vein, Iowa roared back to take Wisconsin to OT, and then earned the win, 85-79.

In the, “we took Stanford to OT, but lost. Let’s see if we can take let the Wildcats take us to OT and win” vein, Cal succeeds.

In the, “yes, the Pac-12 enjoys OTs, ’cause it gives the fans heart palpitations,’ vein, Washington exploded for 45 in the second to tie up the game, but fell to UCLA in, you guessed it, OT, 79-73.

In the, “Yah, you may be undefeated in conference play, you Bengals you, but we Bobcats are cute and fuzzy and will take. You. Down. In OT!” vein, it was Montana State giving Idaho State their first Big Sky loss. (Bussey’s school record 41pts helped.)

It was close, but no overtime for the UNC-W folks, as EDD used her 29 pts and 14 rebounds 4 assists and 3 blocks to ensure a Blue Hen victory in North Carolina, 62-53.

It was oh, so close but Middle Tennessee squeezed out a 2-point win over Aston’s North Texas team, 70-68.

I’m sure the Terps were happy to play Boston College, but they were happier to have Thomas back.

Penguins win!

Eagles beat Ospreys.

You know, Wright State used to be really awful, but I notice they’re 8-2 in the Horizon.

Whoops! Memphis (6-2 C-USA) lost to Southern Miss, 62-54. The Tigers beat the Eagles by 41 last time they played.

Mini whoops! The Blue Jays (6-4 MVC) take down the Shockers (8-2), 61-59.

Another mini-whoops! BYU (8-2, WCC) got hammered by the Waves (6-4), 49-61.

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Driving For Home – A hoops prodigy who had her choice of powerhouse programs, Elena Delle Donne once quit the sport. Now she’s the nation’s top scorer at upstart Delaware—and couldn’t be happier

TRANSLATED FROM ITALIAN, the family name means “of the women,” and it could hardly be more fitting. The clan is extraordinarily close-knit, living together on a 35-acre compound outside Wilmington. Not only do the Delle Donne females outnumber the males three to two; the entire offense runs through the family’s oldest daughter, Lizzie. “She’s the boss,” says Ernie Delle Donne (6’6″), the paterfamilias and a former basketball player at Columbia. “And the happiest of my kids.” Adds Gene Delle Donne, 25, who at 6’7″ played tight end for Middle Tennessee State, “Lizzie’s the captain of the boat; we’re just the crew.”

Now 27, Lizzie was born deaf, blind and with cerebral palsy. “She’s severely handicapped, functioning at the level of an infant—and she’s incredible,” says Elena, age 22. “The battles she fights to get through a day put everything in perspective.” Lizzie knows her sister by her scent and her feel. As Helen Keller did, Lizzie can communicate using hand-over-hand sign language. “She can [distinguish] my hugs and kisses,” says Elena. “I can’t even describe how close we are.”

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Stricklen: sprain

EDD: strain

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notices Elena: Delle Donne a hometown hero

There’s irony in the fact Delaware’s Elena Delle Donne — who walked away from a scholarship at powerhouse Connecticut and once put basketball in her past — is now hailed by some as the sport’s future. Watching her put together an all-time season, and doing it with a big smile, it’s easy to see why.

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Blue, that is, and welcome to the AP Poll.

Speaking of teams flying under the radar, how about them National (and Junkanoo) Champions? They’ll be in the spotlight right quick as they prepare to face #13 Purdue and then #2 UConn.

Nate is Looking Back At Weekend Tournaments & A Few Upsets

And yes, I’ve noticed that one of the Mittens is 7-0.

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From Mel: Delle Donne Heads Back To Active Duty At Delaware

And from Kevin Tresolini at Delaware Online:

Delle Donne said she has had “every test in the book” to determine the cause of the fatigue and muscle and joint pain she has been experiencing for almost two months that has caused her to miss 11 of Delaware’s 18 games. She has shown improvement from the anti-biotics she began taking recently for Lyme Disease, said Dr. Andrew Reisman, UD assistant AD for sports medicine, and sometimes-hard-to-diagnose Lyme is now viewed as the likely cause of her symptoms.

“I probably won’t be 100 percent this season,” Delle Donne said. “It’s just something I’ll have to deal with, though it kills me that I can’t play at 100 percent. I’m just going to give all I can and try and finish out the season.”

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From Lady Swish: Delle Donne could have Lyme disease.

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Sidelined Delle Donne to see spine specialist

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Mel’s blog

Oh, Owls (the Owls (5-4) achieved what teams with long-range purposes are expected to do against underdog opponents – dominant and take care of business.)

Oh, good (It now appears that Delle Donne had suffered a severe viral infection.)

Oh, really? (Sun rumor)

Oh… GAWD! (She immediately mentioned Hall of Famer Carol Blazejowski as a potential candidate.)

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From Mel: Health Issue Stops Delaware’s Delle Donne In Win At La Salle

Is Delaware sophomore sensation Elena Delle Donne on the road to becoming the Stephen Strasburg of women’s basketball with injuries and health conditions impacting her career of great potential as a collegian?

In major league baseball last summer, Strasburg made a dynamic pitching debut with the Washington Nationals. However, in late August he was diagnosed with a season-ending right-elbow injury requiring surgery that could keep him off the mound until 2012.

Now it’s the Blue Hens folks’ turn to worry over a young phenom of their own, especially after Delle Donne took herself out of action six minutes into Sunday’s afternoon game here at La Salle’s Tom Gola Arena.

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