SEATTLE, Wash. -- The 2012 USA Women’s National Team (1-0) notched a 100-62 exhibition win over China on Saturday night at KeyArena in Seattle, Wash. That the U.S. women, ranked No. 1 in the world by FIBA, won was, by itself, unsurprising. That the Americans were able to so totally eviscerate the Chinese women -- ranked No. 7 in the world -- with only one day of practice under their belts since their roster was finalized late last month was impressive.
INDIANAPOLIS – A participant in six national championships and 12 NCAA Final Four appearances, longtime college assistant and head coach Mickie DeMoss has joined the Indiana Fever as an assistant to Head Coach Lin Dunn. DeMoss joins returning assistant coach Stephanie White on the Fever bench.
NEW ORLEANS, La. --- Katrina McClain, Georgia Basketball's first-ever National Player of the Year in 1987 who went on to become a three-time U.S. Olympian, has been elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. The Hall's Class of 2012 was announced on Monday in New Orleans in association with the NCAA Men's Final Four.
KINGSTON, R.I. – It’s a 1-2 step across all four regionals in the 2012 NCAA Division I women's basketball tournament. For just the fourth time in history the top two seeds at each location will meet to vie for the right to advance to the Final Four.
Since the WNBA All-Star Game, as always, is all but unwatchable to those who, like me, demand at least a modicum of defense, its a good time to take a look at whats gone on in the first half of the season
There's been a lot of movement in our Top 25 last week, and most of it begins at the top, thanks to Stanford's historic win over UConn, who entered the week at No. 1. That win (not to mention the Cardinal's dismantling of then-No. 7 Xavier) propelled Stanford back into the top five, to a position that had to be somewhere above Connecticut.
So why not just move No. 2 Baylor into the top slot? Because the Lady Bears' sole loss of the season came at the hands of the Huskies. Our rankings place more emphasis on head-to-head wins and losses, and results versus common opponents, than other polls, which often rely more on hypothetical match-ups even this deep into the season. With both Baylor and UConn holding a host of victories -- most by big numbers and several over nationally ranked opponents -- there was no basis for moving the Bears into the No. 1 berth over a team that had beaten them.
So this week, undefeated Duke, a team that also boasts several Top 10 wins in its resume this season, headlines our rankings, followed by Baylor, then Tennessee (which lost earlier this season to Baylor but beat Stanford), then the Cardinal and the Huskies, in that order.
Duke's ascendancy makes Texas A&M's whisker-close loss to the Blue Devils earlier this season look even better, so the Aggies slip into the No. 6 position, followed by unbeaten North Carolina and West Virginia and 13-1 Michigan State. Xavier, with two losses -- both to Top 10 teams -- rounds out the Top 10.
Kentucky remains at No. 11, while UCLA drops to No. 12 after picking up its first loss of the year against visiting LSU, who started the season nationally ranked but dropped out of the rankings after several early stumbles.
Notre Dame rises a position to No. 13, Maryland moves up to No. 14 after beating No. 18 St. John's, while DePaul (looking good after it's win several weeks ago over Stanford) moves up to No. 15, despite being out of action last week.
Several teams who were in the next five spots last week took serious tumbles, the worst of which was Ohio State, who continued its nose dive with back-to-back losses to unranked teams on the heels of its dismantling by the Huskies. This is a team with the talent to be in the Top 25, but at the moment, its 9-4 performance doesn't justify its presence there. Also falling -- down, but not out at this point -- were St. John's (loss to No. 17 Marylalnd), Oklahoma (loss to currently unranked TCU), Iowa (losses to unraked Penn State and Michigan), and Arkansas (loss to unranked Florida). The remaining teams in last week's rankings -- Georgetown, Iowa State, Syracuse, Miami and Texas -- move up to fill their places.
Meanwhile, Arizona State debuts at No. 24 in this week's Full Court Top 25. A week ago, the Sun Devils made a statement with their upset of nationally ranked DePaul and their only two losses this season have come at the hands of No. 3 Tennessee and a Florida State team that was nationally ranked at the time.
Let's take a closer look at last week's action, and its impact on the Top 25.