Baylor, Notre Dame the teams to beat in Oklahoma City, Norfolk regionals
Even after guiding Baylor to the women's national championship last season with the same group of core players, coach Kim Mulkey still doesn't understand the way her team goes about preparing to play a game.
With smartphones, televisions and other technology serving as potential distractions all around the locker room, Mulkey has figured out that her best place to spend her time before the game is anywhere else.
"I just stay away from 'em because the way I get prepared for a game . . . is a lot different than young people do," Mulkey said Saturday.
Whatever they've been doing, it's been successful.
Led by All-American Brittney Griner, the top-ranked Lady Bears (34-1) have won 74 of 75 games leading up to today's game against fifth-seeded Louisville (26-8) in the NCAA Tournament's round of 16. The other Oklahoma City regional semifinal pits second-seeded Tennessee (26-7) against sixth-seeded Oklahoma (24-10).
Of the teams, only Baylor has been to a Final Four with its current nucleus. The Lady Bears made it in 2010, then lost in the regional finals in 2011 before winning it all last year.
In today's pair of Norfolk regional games, point guards are taking center stage.
Skylar Diggins of top-seeded Notre Dame (33-1) -- which has lost in the championship game the last two seasons -- will face off against 5-4 speed demon Angel Goodrich, who helped make Kansas (20-13) just the second No. 12 seed to ever get this far in the women's tournament.
The other matchup has Lindsay Moore coming off a 20-point, 10-assist effort that led No. 6 Nebraska (25-8) past Texas A&M on the Aggies home floor, and No. 2 Duke (32-2) countering with rookie Alexis Jones, whose nine games at point include three that made her ACC Tournament MVP. -- AP