Durham to Cleveland

By Jeff Lippman - April 03, 2007

While Duke continues to absorb blows to the stomach by way of Lindsey Harding and the case of the missed free throws and now former coach Gail Goestenkors heading to Texas, here in Cleveland it's business as usual.

Tennessee and Rutgers are taking their practice--hopefully that practice helps the Vols shoot better than on Sunday--and this is a classic championship game matchup.

You have the established program that goes down as the greatest in the game's history versus the upstart team that as of midseason would never have believed they could be here now.

It's muscle power versus motivation.

Tennessee is 44-0 all-time against teams seeded No. 4 or lower, so with No. 4 Rutgers against them tonight, the conventional wisdom would give the edge to the Vols.

But Rutgers is no conventional team. The Scarlet Knights shocked even themselves at how good they could be. What started as a failure to do much of anything became one of the nation's best defenses which has now become an offensive and defensive explosion. The Knights sent three balls reigning down upon LSU in their semifinal game.

The Vols took care of North Carolina on Sunday, no small feat, but shot very poorly in the process and WON'T survive this game with the same output.

The Lady Vols must go through Candace Parker and will also need some timely shooting from Alexis Hornbuckle and Sidney Spencer to combat the Rutgers defense.

It should prove and exciting back and forth battle, but from what we saw on Sunday, any scenario is a possibility.

Posted by Jeff Lippman at 08:04 PM on April 03, 2007

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