UConn’s dominant run could be hurting women’s basketball
When one person – or team – wins over and over, it becomes boring to watch. (Unless, of course, it’s your team.) Repeated dominance is synonymous with hatred. That is why fans around the country hate the New York Yankees in baseball, the New England Patriots in football, and Geno Auriemma’s UConn Lady Huskies.
On Tuesday, Auriemma’s team defeated Notre Dame, 63-53, in the NCAA title game to cap a 38-1 season, and give Auriemma and the program its third straight national title and 10th overall.
“We saw this coming, of course. The UConn Huskies have been the favorite (a mortal lock?) to win this year’s NCAA title for months. So even though Notre Dame stayed with them for a bit tonight, it’s no surprise that here we are, in early April, deconstructing yet another UConn championship, its third consecutive,” Kate Fagan of ESPNW said.
“But this title is a little different, because this one comes with a piece of history: Auriemma now shares space with former UCLA legend John Wooden, the Wizard of Westwood, the most revered men’s college basketball coach in history — and, many would argue, the best,” Fagan added.
Auriemma has been coaching at UConn since 1985, and since the 1995 season, he has compiled all 10 of his national championships. That’s 10 titles in 20 years. He has more championships than every other active Div. 1 women’s coach combined and now has as many titles as the great John Wooden.
Can one team just win it every year? At some point someone other than UConn has to emerge victorious. I’m not raining on our neighbor state’s parade, but as a fan of basketball it hurts the game.
It makes you think that when a player commits to UConn, is it to play for coach Auriemma? Or is it because history says the best of the best go to UConn and win.
UConn has been the lead pipeline to the WNBA. They currently have 12 former players on active WNBA rosters (2014) – one of the most of any program nationally.
The Huskies are the modern day sports monopoly. The best of the best want to play for UConn and in return they dominate every season.
That could be the X-factor between men’s and women’s college basketball. On the men’s side there can be that Butler cinderella team that competes with the Kentuckys, Dukes, and other perennial powerhouse programs. The women are more top heavy. Since 2000, every women’s national champion has either been a one- or two-seed.
For the sport to flourish we need to see heartbreaking upsets, and programs to emerge from the ashes because not everyone is good enough to play for UConn.
According to Uconnhuskies.com here are active Huskies on WNBA rosters (2014). Chart courtesy of UConn athletics.
UCONN PLAYERS ON ACTIVE WNBA ROSTERS
SWIN CASH – New York Liberty
TINA CHARLES- New York Liberty
CHARDE HOUSTON – New York Liberty
ASJHA JONES – Connecticut Sun
KELLY FARIS- Connecticut Sun
RENEE MONTGOMERY – Connecticut Sun
MAYA MOORE – Minnesota Lynx
DIANA TAURASI – Phoenix Mercury
SUE BIRD – Seattle Storm
TIFFANY HAYES – Atlanta Dream
STEFANIE DOLSON – Washington Mystics
KALANA GREENE – Washington Mystics
BRIA HARTLEY – Washington Mystics