Respect For The Conn-glomerate
So putting this into perspective, yes, it is that great. Why? For starters, in the women's game, there aren't as many one and doners. Women actually stay longer than a year, making it possible to see dynasties like the one we're ignoring with Connecticut. Even though it's a very arguable point on some levels, I'm going as far to say that Geno Auriemma is the single greatest coach in college basketball since John Wooden. The man's 6-0 in National Title games. Unbeaten. Not a blemish when the chips are in the middle of the table and it's all on the line. Coach K, can't say that. Hell, very few if any who have made a minimum of at least three trips to the National Title game can state that. The UConn women, until last night, weren't just winning games by the skin of their teeth or skating by on their name alone. They were absolutely CRUSHING the competition by double digits. Oh and if you were in the Top 25, you got the same thing, if not worse. Average margin of victory over Top 25 opposition was something along the lines of 20 plus points or something. Do you realize how great you have to be to roll up one of the Top 25 teams in the country by twenty plus that often?
If nothing else, about this impresses you, that should. Now yes, none of those 78 straight wins have come over Geno's archnemesis Pat Summitt and her Lady Vols. (Note, this was the match I was hoping for in the Final Four before Brittany Griner aka Woman Playing Amongst Girls swatted that out of the sky in the Sweet 16.) Thanks to their real life beef as it were, the only hope we have of this happening is in the NCAA Tournament (which if the NCAA has its way and the Men's tourney goes all Bowl nuts expanding to "everybody, their mama, mama's mama and 5th cousin", will be the only tournament left that has the best thing going in the way of 64 teams). I haven't really seen anything this dominant in my life. At least not this consistently anyway. In football, I guess San Fran during the latter half of the 80s under Walsh and Seifert was fairly close to this. In the pros, Jordan's first full year back after hiatus was nothing short of brutal. (And as a Knicks fan at the time, it was something akin to being in a horror movie KNOWING you're going to die and just praying it's not as horrible as you think...only it's so much worse.) Baseball is an easy answer for me and in retrospect, I find it incredible when I think of what they had and that's the 1998 New York Yankees. I remember being in Meridian, MS watching the World Series unfold thinking...
"I've seen Road Runner/Wily E. Coyote cartoons that were more competitive than this."
Yet since the mid 90s, UConn has emerged as a preeminent juggernaut in the Women's game alongside Tennessee. At the end of the day, regardless of your thoughts on the game of Women's basketball or the like, I ask one thing of you. Take a hard look at the numbers behind the 78 straight wins and simply respect the Conn-glomerate.
Posted 04/07/10 by Len | Filed under: NCAA Basketball
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