Big XII: Wrapping Up Ladies Day in OKC

By Jean Neuberger - October 18, 2006

As Big XII Women's Media Days concluded today, and we get prepared for Men's Day tomorrow, there are some final thoughts that come to mind...

1) Surprising Media Attendance - The crowd for today's Media Days was surprisingly low. I was at least guessing that around 50-60 members of the print media would be here for the events, but on estimate, I'd say maybe 20 showed up. This is a shame for a lot of reasons. First of all, Oklahoma has a real shot to make a national title run, and you'd think at least there would be a solid media throng around Sherri Coale, Courtney Paris, and company, but it wasn't that way for most of the time. Coale, however, was more than generous in allowing everyone in the media time to ask questions, even when time was running out.

2) Modesty Among Players - There were no huge egos running around the heads of today's interviewed players. In fact, it was far from it. Every player interviewed was well-mannered, polite, and gave solid answers to questions asked. A journalist can't ask much more from athletes than that.

3) Respect for Oklahoma - Wow...every coach today paid homage to the Sooners and Sherri Coale. Never have I attended an event where the coaches all tip their hat to one team and declare them the best. Today, that changed. Everyone you talked to gave immense credit to the Lady Sooner program. Not one interview went by without a question, or a compliment, paid towards Oklahoma.

4) Dangerous Teams - Though everyone picked OU, I saw something out of the players and/or coaches from three schools that definitely will have me looking at their progress this season. In Texas A&M, I saw a team brimming with confidence, and a team that honestly believes it can take on anyone in the country. In Kansas State, I saw a coach and a team that has something up their sleeves. They believe they can play spoiler, and you can sense a real desire to prove something in the players' eyes. Finally, in Iowa State, I saw two players in Medders and Ronhovde whose maturity and leadership can never be underestimated. Besides being talented players, they show great intelligence and the ability to really build a close-knit group in Ames that could have a fantastic season.

5) Cox Convention Center - It's COLD. Wow, is it cold! Everyone, from Big XII officials to coaches to players to journalists, complained about the frigid conditions of the Convention Center, which is currently in the middle of renovation. There was no sign of a thermostat, but it had to read somewhere in the 40s. They need to either build a small fire, or find that thermostat and raise the temperature there about 30 degrees!

All in all though, a great Media Day for the 12 women's teams of the Big XII, as they look to be a very tough conference this year. Expect a lot of NCAA selections from this talented league.

We'll be back tomorrow, but reporting from Hang Time. For now, we bid you good night from Oklahoma City. Keep checking for more updates as conference media days continue all over the country!

Posted by Jean Neuberger at 09:50 PM on October 18, 2006

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