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Staff should have been more careful: Dual roles tough, but Mulkey needed to avoid any conceivable impermissible contact

Women’s basketball, just like any other sport, has its constantly churning rumor mill. And in regard to Baylor’s recruitment of center Brittney Griner, the fact that coach Kim Mulkey’s daughter, Makenzie Robertson, and Griner were on the same DFW Elite Basketball club team, along with other current Baylor players, was grist for the mill during that process.

Thus, the news broken by ESPN.com’s Jason King on Monday that national champion Baylor is facing possible NCAA sanctions — on top of already self-imposed penalties — for violations that include improper contact with Griner and her father during recruiting didn’t completely shock those who follow women’s hoops.

That said, the rumor mill is so active, it seems like out of every 25 or so rumors you hear, one might actually result in NCAA penalties as a consequence. Does that ratio sound bleak? I guess it does, but it’s partly because there really isn’t merit to all the rumors … and partly because the NCAA simply doesn’t have the investigative force to dig into every one of them.

Who knows how the dust will settle, but Richard Deitsch believes the Baylor Lady Bears lead preseason women’s basketball top 10

In more other coaching news: there were rumors of Cynthia Cooper moving to the west coast — she did didn’t get that far. Following on the news that Coach Wells-Broughton was leaving Texas Southern, comes word that Cooper-Dyke has resigned as UNCW women’s basketball coach, and now she’ll be the new women’s coach at Texas Southern. It’s a move that Dan Spears of the “Cheap Seat” wonders about:

It’ll be a return to familiar territory for Cooper-Dyke, who played professionally for the WNBA Houston Comets and got her first collegiate head coaching job at Prairie View A&M, just outside the city.

The biggest question at this point isn’t, “Why” … but “Why Texas Southern?” … The Southwestern Athletic Conference is a clear step below the CAA as far as level of play, facilities, etc.

In other coaching news, the Hustle Belt is Digging Deep Into Eastern Michigan’s NCAA Violations

As many of you well know, AnnMarie Gilbert — formerly the head women’s basketball coach at Eastern Michigan — resigned recently amid mention that an investigation of the NCAA violations that had been committed last season was still ongoing. Suss himself expressed surprise at this move, given a) the incredible success Gilbert has had as coach (.595 win pct.) and b) the seemingly tame nature of the violations — that the team had regularly gone over the NCAA rule of no more than four hours per day and 20 hours per week of basketball related activities (practice, film, games).

I was initially going to reference a recent espnW article titled “The Glass Wall” about how Title IX has been a boon for women’s athletics everywhere but in the coaching ranks, and how reading that article made me wonder if Gilbert might ever coach again now that she has temporarily stepped away.

I still have that same wonder, and I still strongly urge you to read the article, but my focus is no longer the same — I’m now wondering if Gilbert deserves to coach again.

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since Houston lost and McNesse State won, the WHB curse was neutralized. (Yes, I’m using my escape goat.)

It’s the Cowgirls first trip to the NCAAs, and there’s a great story behind it:

Twin sisters Ashlyn and Caitlyn Baggett led McNeese State to the Southland Conference tournament championship and its first NCAA tournament berth on Friday night.

As they celebrated the 71-50 victory over Central Arkansas, the pair reflected on a time not too long ago when it looked as though they might never suit up for the Cowgirls again. After both had successful freshman seasons in 2009, they decided to leave the team and soon began dealing with health problems that threatened their athletic careers.

A year away from the court got them healthy and happy, and they combined for 38 points in the championship game.

Meanwhile, Houston ran into a Green Wave that has recently seemed to regain its footing. Their 70-60 upset of the #22 Cougars puts Tulane in the finals against UCF, who are riding a 10-game win streak.

No surprise, it’s UCLA v. Stanford in the Pac-10 finals, and Baylor v. Texas A&M in the Big 12.

Green Bay continues their run, and Graham continues his coverage.

Bowling Green moved past Central Michigan, 80-72, to move into the MAC finals. #1 seed Toledo got surprised by Eastern Michigan, and so it’s the Eagles, not the Rockets who’ll face the Falcons.

Prairie View A&M has recovered from their coach’s move last season, and are in the SWAC finals. Their former coach has taken her new team, UNC- Wilmington, into the CAA semis.

LaTech’s 1000th program win moves Spoon’s team into the WAC finals. Writes Mechelle: Life is grand for Lady Techsters

When sleeved jerseys were still the norm, box scores were run off on mimeograph machines and most “big” universities cared little for their women’s basketball programs, Louisiana Tech was winning games.

The sleeves are gone (even holdout Tech finally abandoned them), Twitter sends messages worldwide in a blink and there is significantly more money/effort now put into supporting the sport by most Division I schools.

And Louisiana Tech … is still winning games.

Friday, in fact, the Lady Techsters claimed their 1,000th victory, a milestone only Tennessee has reached among Division I programs.

“It means a lot to me because of them,” Tech coach Teresa Weatherspoon, one of the school’s playing legends, said of the current players. “I’m proud of where they’ve come from.”

Check out the finals on ESPNU today at 1pmPT.

Yup, I was right – you DON’T want to meet Delaware in the CAA tourney. The Fighting Blue Hens took down ODU, 72-55. EDD: 31pts, 10rebs, 4 blocks.

Okay, did my flashback make the Sycamore cranky? Indiana State (8/10 in the MVC) upset Stephanie Glance’s Illinois State Redbirds (12-6) 80-51 in the quarters.

Whoops! The Utes (7-9/MWC) used an exciting buzzer-beating shot to upset BYU, 50-49, so the Mountain West finals will feature Utah and soon to be Big East member, TCU.

It will be Portland State and Montana in the Big Sky finals.

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For those lobbying for Texas A&M getting a fair shot at a #1 spot, last night’s 71-67 loss to Kansas State was demoralizing.

Speaking of demoralizing, I bet Oklahoma enjoyed beating in-state rival Oklahoma State by 15. (And congrats to Coach Coale, who was named the Lemons/Hanson Award winner)

Jones-less Baylor stomped all over Missouri to clinch their second Big 12 conference title.

Oh, yah, the CAA tourney ought to be fun: UNC Wilmington lost to James Madison by 2, 79-77 and Old Dominion got beaten by Drexel, 65-51.

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coach Tanya Warren and her Northern Iowa team (really, readers shouldn’t let me post without my coffee!) who won their first Missouri Valley Conference regular-season championship.

We knew this: From SI via the AP, Cooper-Dyke building UNC Wilmington into a winner

During her Hall of Fame playing career, Cynthia Cooper-Dyke always seemed to make the toughest moves look easy – and she’s doing the same thing as a coach.

In her first season at North Carolina-Wilmington, she has the Seahawks on the verge of setting a school record for victories. They’ve won 20 for just the third time in program history, and she’s got them believing they can earn the school’s first NCAA tournament berth – if not this year, then soon.

“It’s been a great experience to play for a Hall of Famer,” senior Brittany Blackwell said. “Just being dominant in the league, it’s just another state of mind and feeling. You’ve kind of got swag with you, and I think we’re gaining the respect of our league for once, which has not been the case.”

It’s been hard to put your finger on Georgetown this season — they’ve been up and down. But, there’s no doubt the program is continuing its upward trajectory. From Joseph White at the AP: Georgetown women want to add their own hardware to Hoyas’ trophy case

There are more than 100 trophies, plaques, statues and other mementos won by various Georgetown sports teams in the John Thompson Lobby at McDonough Memorial Gymnasium, including awards earned by the baseball, soccer, golf, track and field and cross-country teams.

And, of course, rows upon rows are dedicated to men’s basketball, including nets that have been cut down after the biggest wins, most of them overseen by the longtime Hall of Fame coach whose name is part of a mural near the lobby’s ceiling.

Not a single item in any of the trophy cases was won by the women’s basketball team.

UConn will play the next two weeks or so with an even shorter bench.

The Duke-UNC game on Sunday is SOLD OUT! DWHoops has a game preview.

Florida’s win over Vanderbilt was their first in Nashville since 2004.

With their 22nd straight win, #21 Marist also clinched the MAAC regular season title (17-0). Loyola (MD) stayed on their heels (15-2) with an OT win over Iona.

Creighton (12-4 MVC) got “Shocked” by Wichita State (7-8 MVC), 60-51.

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lot of running and clubbing and cruising and romping and mauling and ripping and whipping and season high-ing.

DCBC watched the Tiger Taming and C&R tracked the Cardinal.

Some escaped, in spite of a serious case of fumble fingers (28 TOs!). Some escaped in OT.

Some proved they were Monty Python fans (“I’m not dead yet!”)

As for “other” teams:

Coach Stockon’s Green Wave ran their C-USA record to 4-0 with a 30-pt victory over Marshall. (Did anyone catch Tulane on TV last week? FUN team to watch!)

Wonder if they need to watch out for Houston, who’s also 4-0.

She’s baaaaaak! Drey Mingo goes double-double on Northwestern, securing a (101st for Versyp) Purdue win.

A big win for Penn State (83-62) puts them at 4-1 in the Big 10 (and yes, it’s weird that Illinois’ Penn had a double-double) (And yes, Lucas snapped Mazzante’s record of freshman threes.)

Swish! Drexel uses a last-second three to topple William & Mary 59-58.

Are the Lady Bears (Mo) becoming relevant again? They’re 5-1 in the MVC.

Don’t look now, but Army is 3-0 in Patriot League play (and have won five straight).

Marist rules the MAAC. So what’s new?

Middle Tennessee still rules the Sun Belt — but it was close against Arkansas State.

Old Dominion over Delaware. That’s #599 for Wendy Larry. (Oh, and the ODU SID peeps do a great job keeping up with their alums. Check out Former Lady Monarch’s Pen is as Mighty as Her Jump Shot and Nancy Lieberman’s Historic Debut.)

Coach Boyle is at a loss, and so are her Cal Bears.

Didja catch Coop’s UNC-Wilmington team squeeze out a win over Hofstra? (They’re now 4-1 in the CAA.)

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