Despite a pair of victories, Louisville women’s basketball fell from the #1 ranking. We all suspected it would happen following their loss to #4 NC State. Thankfully, the Cards only dropped a couple spots down to #3 in the AP Poll, but did not receive any first place votes.
South Carolina retook the top spot for the second time this year with all but one of the first place votes. UConn sat closely behind in the second spot. Coincidentally, those two squads played last night, which we will get to later on.
NC State retained their #4 ranking and received the only other first place vote. The Wolfpack made a strong case for a higher position before getting upset by North Carolina on Sunday.
Stanford, Texas A&M, and Baylor each moved up one spot for the #5, #6, and #7 positions, respectively. UCLA dropped down to #8 following a loss. Maryland and Arizona flip flopped with the Terps moving to #9 and the Wildcats slipping to #10.
We still haven’t seen any other ACC teams make the Top 25, but several teams are within striking distance. Syracuse, Georgia Tech, and Virginia Tech all received votes.
Including tonight’s games, there’s 26 days left in the regular season. In a normal year, this is where rankings become more and more important as teams fight for the top four seeds in each region and home court advantage. With the entire tournament being held in a semi-central location, there is no home court advantage, but there is still plenty of bragging rights.
So now let’s backtrack to last night’s prime time game. South Carolina visited UConn for a 7:00 p.m., top-off. It was a poor shooting night for both teams and their three-point shooting would scare even the bravest people in a haunted house.
Regulation wasn’t enough excitement for this game so we added overtime to keep people on the edges of their seats a wee bit longer. The Huskies came out with a 63-59 victory in a game where the largest lead was seven points.
|#4 NC State||7-2||2.5||.778||12-2||.857||L1|
As Paulie mentioned yesterday, Louisville holds a 2.5 game lead over NC State in the conference standings. The Cards have five games remaining. Mrs. Wuf’s squad has six games left.
So what’s the mean for the Cards? Well, it’s simple. Louisville controls their own destiny. If they win out, the ACC title is theirs. In fact, they can still afford to lose another game (preferably not) and would still have more ACC wins and ACC win percentage than NC State to take the title.
Here’s where things get weird. Georgia Tech is only two games behind with their 9-3 record, but they have the third best win percentage (.750). Syracuse (8-4) is only three games behind and is fourth in win percentage. From there, everyone else sits at five games behind or further.
With four of the five games remaining being against the top six ACC teams, the Cards could actually finish as low as sixth. Let’s hope they don’t crash and burn though.
Just hand her the Player of the Year title. At this point there is no one you can’t put over the senior from Gary, Ind. I know, South Carolina's Boston is getting chatter and freshman Paige Bueckers at UConn hs been on fire lately, but Dana delivers each and every night -- unflappable, intense, and "the one" that anyone the Cards play probably has at the top of their scouting list -- maybe with the sentence:
"How do you stop #1"
Rightfully so, Dana Evans was named both the ACC and ESPNW Player of the Week .yesterday.
In the three games last week, Evans averaged 26.3 points per game, 3.7 assists per game, and 3.0 rebounds per game while playing almost every single minute. She shot higher than 40% from both the floor and three-point range. The only downside to Dana’s week was her 43-straight made free throws coming to an end. She is shooting .933 from the charity stripe this season.
Dana now has 36 straight games with double-digit points. That ties for the longest streak by a UofL women’s basketball player over the last two decades. Her partner in crime up there? Just someone named Angel McCoughtry. That’s darn good company to be in.
Thursday will be Senior Day with Dana being the only current player on the roster being recognized. We all have one final game to see Dana step onto Denny Crum Court. Georgia Tech comes to call, which means former Card great Cortnee Walton will be back in the KFC YUM! Center, handling her duties as recruiting operations director (we assume...we'll look for her).
Today is Cortnee's birthday, by the way, so send her a "Happy Birthday" tweet at @cortneewalton
FROM THE CARDINAL COUPLE WEATHER CENTER, PSUEDO-METEOROROLOGIST JARED ANDERSON REPORTS : The next several days have an ugly forecast. We will see temperatures as low as zero degrees on top of potential freezing rain and ice. This may not be drastic news to some of you, especially north of Louisville -- but...here, it's newsworthy.
We care about all of our readers and contributors here at Cardinal Couple. Please take whatever precautions you may need to handle the upcoming weather. We now return you to our regularly scheduled program : "The Perils of Paulie trying to figure out the Internet."
Happy Tuesday and Go Cards!