Good morning everyone:
I am looking out of my window at the pristine blue waters that abut the Marriott Frenchmen’s Reef resort.
It gives me a similar feeling to what I’ve had this week watching the UConn women envelop Wake Forest and Marist.
You know, what can possibly be better?
Let’s just say, there are ragged rocks on sandy bottoms and rough spots Geno Auriemma wants to iron on defensively.
Nothing is as perfect at it appears.
Some random thoughts:
- There is a report, unsubstantiated to this point, that an iguana tried to draw a charge on Stefanie Dolson Friday as she sat on her chair at the pool. Sources say Dolson got out of the lane as quickly as she could and allowed the iguana access to anything it wanted access to. No harm, no foul.
- Tonight’s challenge – and I use the term advisedly – at the Paradise Jam is No. 14 Purdue, which is still undefeated (5-0). The Boilermakers dispatched Wake Forest on Friday, 67-53, after having an easy time with Marist on Thursday. Here is Geno Auriemma’s take: “Every year, they are a program that contends for the Big Ten championship and their style has been physical, as well. They are again a very physical team and are getting great guard play right now. I don’t think it will be an easy game and we knew going into this tournament that it would be our toughest game.”
- I don’t want to blow this out of proportion, although I must admit I have a whimsical streak that provokes this type of behavior: But 10 of UConn’s 11 players got double-figure minutes against Marist (none more than Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis’ 29) and each one of them made a substantive contribution to the win. In terms of oceans, UConn is deep as the Pacific (35,837 feet, if you must know).
- Geno says he would have played zone all night against Marist, which led to a 42-14 halftime lead, but his players wouldn’t learned a hoot about defense that way. And he says some have a lot to learn. “The player Breanna Stewart was guarding [Marist’s Emma O’Connor] scored 16 of her 18 while [Stewart] was on her.”
- You say ‘Can this team go undefeated and win the national championship?’ I say ‘Yep.’
- It’s a little late now, of course, but if you are a crazy UConn fan and have always wanted to have great access to the program and its games, a tournament like this one is the best place to do it. You can mingle in the lobby, at the pool, in the elevators and sit so close to the bench at games that you can see the soles of Geno’s cool blue Cole Haan loafers.
- Do I know what’s going to happen with UConn and the Big East? I do not. I wouldn’t chance a guess. I know what I’d wish for. Have you ever been to Charlottesville, Va? It will make you forget East or West Orange, N.J., in a heartbeat. But I will say this. If we wake up in a month and UConn is still in the Big East, and Cincinnati and Louisville are not, the best thing to do will be to pull the covers up and over our heads.
- Do you wonder what Notre Dame’s point of view is about all of this? When the Irish sit in ACC meetings and are asked about the remaining programs in the Big East, whom do you think they will lobby for if they must chose just one? “I hope Notre Dame would be an ally of anyone in the Big East,” Geno said. “I feel the Big East did a lot for it, as much as they did for us. I don’t know what impact that would have on anyone. I don’t spend a lot a time thinking about. It’s part of the athletic equation I know nothing about.”