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January 2008 Archives

Monday, 01/28/08

Palming The Road To 64

Huzzah! Huzzah! CSTV.com's January 28 edition of Jerry Palm's "Road To 64" bracket has been released.

If you have been paying attention and hanging on to every typed word this blog has spewed forth, then you very well know how much I remain anti-Big Ten. Only Ohio State deserves to be in the NCAA Tournament, and that is simply because the AP and the Coaches have been ranking them all season, I'm still not buying the Buckeye's cow.

So you can expect that when I focused my vision on Mr. Palm's Jan. 28 bracket, noticing that not only was OSU in the NCAAs according to Palm, but so were five other Big Ten schools, I was a little surprised. Six teams for the most powerless of the power conferences? More teams then the ACC, SEC and Pac-10?

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 10:47 AM | Comment

Sunday, 01/27/08

Once She Pops

Honestly, I've been waiting over a year to use that line. It's about time, LaToya Pringle.

Saturday saw some big conference matchups across the nation and none was larger than the double overtime thriller won by No. 3 North Carolina over No. 4 Maryland in Chapel Hill.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 01:22 PM | Comment

Wednesday, 01/23/08

Having A Good Knight

It's like, which one of these things doesn't belong? Except, they do belong. But for different reasons.

While it still might be too early to accurately predict the Final Four that will take place in Tampa, Fla., on April 6, that doesn't mean we can't try.

And while teams like Connecticut, Tennessee, North Carolina and Maryland seem to be getting a lot of hype, there is another team that deserves respect, but will beat you in a very different way then those others.

No. 5 Rutgers is a national title contender. They are the defending runners-up and they aren't fast, they don't shoot great percentages, they don't have a go-to superstar. What do they have? They have the ability to turn those other teams mentioned into brick-laying, turnover machines.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 09:37 AM | Comment

Sunday, 01/20/08

Statistically Turtles And Jackets

Georgia Tech proved a lot Sunday for heading back to Atlanta with a loss on their record.

The Yellow Jackets may have dropped their game against No. 4 Maryland, but after taking the Terps to the brink of disaster that spanned two overtime periods and a GT lead with under 2 minutes remaining, Maryland's 99-95 win was still invigorating for the Buzz.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 04:40 PM | Comment

Friday, 01/18/08

The State Of Connecticut

No. 1 Connecticut can not afford to lose any more leadership to injury.

First, the Huskies lose junior guard and contributor Kalana Greene for the season to a torn ACL, and now, the same injury has taken senior guard and the Huskies' best outside shooting threat Mel Thomas.

This one hurts, especially for Thomas as she is a senior and can no longer red shirt the season because UConn has played more than 30 percent of its games. Greene will be able to earn eligibility back for this season despite playing in eight contests.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 11:01 AM | Comment

Thursday, 01/17/08

Amber Alert

Has anybody seen what's been going on down in Murfreesboro, Tenn.?

While the Lady Raiders of Middle Tennessee State flounder to stay above .500 with a record of 9-8, their lone bright spot is shining brighter than almost any other player in the nation.

Senior guard/forward Amber Holt is leading the country in scoring with an incredible average of 26.6 points per contest, a full two points more than Utah Valley State's Robyn Fairbanks.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 05:04 PM | Comment

Wednesday, 01/16/08

The Plight Of Abby Waner

"She's right. We are Duke and we should be winning," said Duke junior guard Abby Waner of Maryland's Laura Harper rejoicing with fans in a chant of, "We beat Duke! We beat Duke!" after the Terps defeated the Blue Devils in College Park for the first time since 1998 Monday.

In many ways, that distorted Duke doctrine that says the Blue Devils will forever be masters of anything basketball related is correct.

Year in and year out, we expect Duke basketball - men or women's - to be among the best in the nation. And although they lost the coach (Gail Goestenkors) and both All-Americans from a team that went undefeated in the regular season, here the Dukies are, once again, near the top of the rankings at No. 10.

But this isn't the same Duke team. It's not even close. And one of the biggest reasons the Blue Devils have struggled throughout a season in which they have already lost four times is the fact that their two biggest returning stars, senior Wanisha Smith and the junior preseason All-American candidate Waner, are simply not playing up to potential.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 09:49 AM | Comment

Sunday, 01/13/08

She Was Literally On Fire

Never before has a post in "She's On Fire" been as appropriate to its title.

Oklahoma State's Andrea Riley truly was on fire Saturday against Oklahoma. The 5-foot-5 sophomore guard from Dallas' Lincoln High School scored an incredible 45 points - 37 in the second half alone! - and literally could not be stopped during the Cowgirls beat down of the No. 6 team in the nation.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 12:29 PM | Comment

Thursday, 01/10/08

What Had Happened Was...

First Stanford, then Georgia and now this?

Coaches aren't going to want to speak with me. Media relations people aren't going to take my calls and E-mails. Are my columns really having an eerie effect on the program's I write about?

My December Review lauded Stanford's efforts - the Cardinal lost two in a row after that. I wrote that undefeated Georgia was a team to reckon with in the SEC - they aren't undefeated any longer.

And now, my words may have coaxed an entire state into a funk.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 05:03 PM | Comment

Wednesday, 01/09/08

Best Of The Best

We often talk about women's basketball being a sport in which the best of the best win as expected and the worst of the worst lose as expected.

This scenario is slowly beginning to shift, however. Last year at this time, the nation's top three teams, Maryland, North Carolina and Duke, respectively, were all undefeated.

Fast forward to 2008 and the country only has two undefeateds remaining - No. 1 Connecticut and - get this - No. 20 Arkansas.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 01:42 PM | Comment

Tuesday, 01/08/08

For Her Next Trick

Ready for this headline?

Brittany Spears Named Big 12 Rookie of the Week

When she's open and wants her teammate to pass her the ball does she yell, "hit me baby, one more time?"

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 12:02 PM | Comment

Monday, 01/07/08

Kiss Of Death

Happy birthday to me.

Because I don't think Georgia and Stanford will be wishing me good tidings anytime soon.

The last two teams I wrote about, glowing praise for the Cardinal in my December Review, and talking about Georgia like they were the next big thing in the SEC, brought nothing but pain and suffering for each team.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 10:19 AM | Comment

Sunday, 01/06/08

Something Bruin?

How's this for parity in women's basketball.

UCLA lost back-to-back games to Pepperdine and Idaho State - Pepperdine is 5-8 and they blew the Bruins out - and now, just over a month later, have the opportunity to beat back-to-back Top 10 teams when No. 10 Cal invades Westwood.

And call me crazy, but I think they can do it.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 12:00 PM | Comment

Friday, 01/04/08

The Evil 'Eyes

If it sometimes sounds like I am taking unfair shots at the Big Ten Conference, you must be a fan. Because anyone who knows women's college basketball, at this point, has got to be completely fed up.

Give me the Big Sky, the Big Easy or the Big Kahuna before you give me the Big Ten.

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 08:10 PM | Comment

Friday, 01/04/08

Cat Got Your Tongue

Or is that catch a Tiger by the tail?

Either way, Auburn has hit a snag. One of their nine lives has been drained by a nasty two-game losing streak against two teams who, frankly, they should be beating.

First, they lose a two-point closely contested battle on the road against St. Joseph's. St. Joe's is losing to teams like Northern Illinois by double digits...need I say more?

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 03:48 PM | Comment

Wednesday, 01/02/08

In The Year 2008

She's on Fire is back, and better than ever in my estimation.

Before taking a Holiday break, She's On Fire told you about the Central Arkansas team who lost consecutive games to the two major colleges in Oklahoma by 73 and 71 points, respectively.

I really hope that my ragging on the Sugar Bears futility didn't have anything to do with the team firing head coach Checola Seals-Horton, Monday, after Central Arkansas dropped two more games, at Toledo and at Miami (Fla.)

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Posted by Jeff Lippman at 12:08 PM | Comment