UConn still rules women’s hoops

By Richard Kent, BASN Staff Reporter
Updated: December 24, 2010

CONNECTICUT (BASN) — UConn’s amazing 89-game winning streak speaks volumes about Geno Auriemma and his program.

He is far and away the best coach in women’s hoops history and if one was to consider starting a D-1 program on the men’s or women’s level he would be the first choice of many AD’s.

What is lost in much of the UConn translation is that a new no. 2 program has emerged. Yes in the shadows of UConn, but also one that is poised to win a couple of National Championships in the next three years and vault their coach into the discussion with the likes of all other women’s coaches not named Geno.

That includes coaches with names like Pat and Tara.

The program is Baylor and the coach is Kim Mulkey. She is as charismatic as Auriemma and probably as good a motivator. Her recruiting acumen has brought Brittney Griner to Waco and that is no small feat.

That is a 6-foot-8 feat.

She also had her choice of some top freshmen point guards. She chose Odyssey Sims. Tell Syracuse about Sims. She had 22 first half points against Syracuse in 18 minutes in the Bahamas. And, Syracuse is a Top 25 team.

Forward Destiny Williams is now eligible for Baylor after transferring from Illinois. She was not available to Mulkey in an early season one point loss at Hartford.

Change the site of that game from Hartford to Waco and throw in Williams and UConn probably would not have been playing a game in front of John Wooden’s grandson in Hartford to break a time honored UCLA record.

There is no true no. 3 team in the country. Tennessee is too slow. Stanford does not have great guards. Duke is young. Xavier is good, but not National Championship good.

Mulkey came from nowhere to win a National Championship in Indianapolis in 2005. She was not even a no. 1 seed. The Final Four is back in Indy again this year.

We say that UConn and Baylor will be playing on a Tuesday night in April for all the marbles. Maya Moore is a great player. Probably along with Diana Taurasi the best ever.

UConn will be tough to beat in such a huge game. Baylor is a team that can do it. They have team speed, a dominant center and a great coach. Those are the ingredients necessary to beat UConn.