The other shoe, it’s safe to say, will drop on or about Nov. 13. That’s when Kelsey Mitchell, ranked No. 4 in the 2014 Full Court Fresh 50, and sister Chelsea will likely sign NCAA National Letters of Intent with the Ohio State University.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – As usual, there were surprises when the USA Basketball Women’s Developmental National Team Committee made its decision on a 12-person international roster – but this year, the U16 team that will represent the United States at the FIBA Americas in June, was more than surprising.
Sure, a supremely talented group of players can overwhelm a roster with significantly lesser ability, but when two talented groups go head-to-head, “team” becomes more important.
In the competitive Western Conference, there are three very talented rosters, but only one has the balance that comes when ability matches position, when options are many and holes are few. That roster belongs to Minnesota, which is why the preview begins with …
One piece of the puzzle at a time, things are falling into place in Los Angeles.
First came coach Carol Ross, who restored order to a franchise that had lost its way. Then came Nneka Ogwumike in the draft, the Rookie of the Year who is the prototypical WNBA power forward. And then this year, the Sparks added point guard Lindsey Harding, which shifted and shuffled the roster into an even stronger alignment.
The Sparks still lack a real back-to-the-basket center, but they’ll just have to make do with Candace Parker, merely one of the best players in the world.
Ever since Dick Vitale high-volumed his way onto a TV screen, American sports fans have listened to a host of commentators talk about coaches as if they were players. "Rick Pitino sure shut down Trey Burke in this one," an announcer will intone, as if Pitino were out on the court personally shadowing Burke.
In truth, of course, Pitino could have had the greatest strategy in the world, but if his players didn't have the talent to execute it, it wouldn't matter. Or, to put it another way, coaching IQ directly correlates with player talent.
It looks like the coaching carousel has stopped spinning (though one never knows), and out of the many, many moves that were made, here are a few that stood out.
And with what many consider the most important season of all just around the corner -- that would be summer recruiting -- all the newcomers, not just the ones mentioned here, must hit the ground texting with both thumbs. Everybody’s smarter with better players, and this is when coaches can impress those better players.
Liz Cambage now plans to play for the Tulsa Shock in 2013, and will arrive in training camp next week.
The club's announcement Thursday is a 180-degree flip from earlier this spring, when Full Court Press was the first to report that Cambage would not be returning, again according to the Shock and coach Gary Kloppenburg.
Cambage also toyed with Tulsa last year, saying she would return after the Olympics, then missing her plane, and then deciding not to return at all. She was expected to play for the Shock this year, but then surprised the team by changing her mind.
“We’re never picked to do well,” says San Antonio coach and general manager Dan Hughes, and this year is no exception. Not only did the Silver Stars lose their leading scorer and rebounder to injury (Sophia Young, 16.3 ppg, 7.2 rpg), the West now has three of the strongest rosters ever assembled in the same conference.