Is there any doubt which college/university had the most exciting athletic department this season?
The University of Louisville had the best of worlds this year as its men’s and women’s basketball teams advanced to the NCAA national championship game. The men’s team was victorious, topping Michigan, 82-76, in a thriller.
The women weren’t as fortunate and fell to Connecticut on Tuesday, 93-60. But that doesn’t take away from the fact that both teams advanced to the championship game.
Former WNBA star Lisa Leslie, who was in New Orleans for the NCAA Women’s Final Four promoting the Capital One Cup, had positive opinion on both teams.
“Louisville will have some serious bragging rights,” said the former Los Angeles Sparks center who is also a Capital One Cup advisory board member. "Both schools getting to the championship game is tremendous."
As for the Capital One Cup, both of the Cardinals basketball teams earned enough points to finish in the top 10. The men’s team is likely to finish in the top five, while the women will finish in the top 10, according to Leslie.
“The best thing about the Capital One Cup winners is that each school will get $200,000 toward post graduate studies or student athletes,” said Leslie.
Leslie also had good things to say about the state of women’s college basketball, particularly Baylor’s Brittney Griner. “She has the ability to change the game and take it to new heights,” said Leslie. “She can drop-step dunk.”
She lauded Delaware’s 6-5 senior Elena Delle Donne and Notre Dame point guard Skylar Diggins, who are expected to be drafted behind Griner in the top three of the WNBA Draft next Monday at ESPN Studios in Bristol, CT.
“She can score inside and she can score outside,” Leslie said of Delle Donne, whose ability to play on the wing at 6-5 will make her a dangerous player. “I enjoy watching her.”
Leslie, who retired from basketball in 2009, runs the Lisa Leslie Basketball and Leadership Academy in Calabasa, Ca. Her teaching academy is about as far as she will go in the coaching department.