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Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Louisville Softball shuts down IU in five innings...Next in the Coaches soap opera...Duke's JoAnne P. -- WEDNESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


The Louisville Softball team spotted IU two first inning runs but used a strong fourth and fifth inning to run-rule the Hoosiers 12-2 yesterday in Bloomington, IN. 

The Cards broke open a tight game in the fourth by scoring five runs on five hits to increase a 3-2 lead to 8-2. While Maryssa Becker, in relief of starter Megan Hensley, kept the Indiana bats silenced...the Cards added four more runs in the top of the fifth to set the run-rule potential and Becker delivered again from the stripe in the bottom of the fifth to end the contest. 

Unlike many of the Cards wins this season where base-clearing blasts over the fences have been the huge run-scoring inning producers, the Cards got it done with mostly small-ball today...with only two-extra base hits...a double from Becker and one from Jordan McNary. Five Cards had two or more RBI's in the game...Nicole Pufahl leading the way with three. 

Hensley allowed just three hits in 2.1 innings pitched and Becker held the Hoosiers hit-less in her 2.2 innings of relief.

Louisville steps out of the ACC again when North Carolina Central comes to Ulmer for the weekend...a double-header scheduled for Saturday and a single-game Sunday. 



Things had just started to simmer down a bit about the tawdry Tyler Summit indiscretion when another historic program announced that they were going to launch an investigation into possible mistreatment of players and coaches. 

No...things aren't going so well for Duke's version of "Coach P"  (JoAnne P. McCallie) down in Durham. 

The Blue Devils are starting a very thorough investigation into the WBB program after the defection of the two latest players...highly heralded sophomore Azura Stevens (transfer) and Angela Salvadores (leaving college). 

The word is that the Duke legal department has already talked to several players and coaches who have left the program in recent years. Sources are indicating that some of these may have been because of mistreatment from McCallie in both the student-athlete ranks and former assistants under McCallie. It is indicated that there have been several complaints about McCallie over the years about her treatment of former players and assistants. The program has had six players leave the program in the last four seasons. 

What is it about North Carolina area WBB? Sylvia Hatchell on the hot seat and now Coach P? 

McCallie has indicated that she is full aware of the investigation and is eager to help in any way she can. 

Many were surprised at the departure of these two of the best players on the 2015-16 squad and also on the way Duke seemed to self-destruct on the court at times this season...Duke was a top 15 pick in most preseason polls but went into a tailspin in February...losing five out of seven games and failing to make the NCAA Tournament. The Blue Devils finished 20-12 and 8-8 in the ACC. 

Coach P has seemed a bit eccentric at times to this women's college basketball observer and several of team's dismal offensive performances this season indicated to me that the consistency and chemistry of the roster was an erratic hit and miss thing. I remember the emotionless way the Blue Devils downed Virginia in the ACC Tournament without Rebecca Greenwell and then how they fell apart at the seams against Notre Dame without really seeming to care too much about it. Louisville scored pretty easily on the Blue Devils in the regular season while shutting them down offensively and Salvadores looked flat and almost dis-interested at times. Greenwell was a non-factor in that game and seemed almost terse in the post-game interview. 

If the allegations about mistreatment from McCallie do come to fruition, though...the former Michigan State and Maine coach needs to be sent packing on the first flight out of Durham.

College basketball is a game that student-athletes participate in

A game.

It's not a mental torture chamber...or grounds for mistreatment of young women or employees. Yes, coaches can be fiery. Players can get emotional. It happens in most programs...but when a university's legal department gets indicates that there is much more going on than a few harsh words and glares.  



  1. We must be careful not to pre-convict coach McCallie, but, having said that, I concur that the team seemed lethargic and uninspired which points to coaching failure. If the allegations are true, it would explain a lot. I have never been a fan of McCallie.

    1. A good point in your opening statement, Charles. One of our readers communicates in an e-mail to me that Duke has most likely wanted her gone for quite some time but she received a contract extension until 2019 when the program was having successes. It would cost around $3 million to buy her out and she is unwilling to go voluntary. Suddenly an answer appears. They start looking at the many complaints that have been lodged over the past several years at their 'get rid of card'. A check at a few sites indicates the Duke WBB fan base is ecstatic that there is a chance she may be gone. The final straw was Stevens and my opinion.

      Where does this leave Lexie Brown, who is on campus after leaving Maryland? is another e-mail I've gotten. Also, was former Duke assistant and current UofL asst. coach Samantha Williams contacted on this matter?

      Certainly not a great time in the history of Duke WBB right now. Being pre-emptive is investigating is one thing Cardinal fans are well aware of but in Duke's case...coaches and fans are not wringing their hands over these charges...they're opening celebrating.


  2. Speculation is out there that there was a serious fight during a practice session during the season among two or more players and that the Duke AD has a video of it. No concrete proof on this but I'm seeing it from multiple sources. Word is JoAnne did nothing to stop it.

    Blue Lou

    1. Yeah...and that may be true, Blue Lou...but speculation is just that. Duke legal will do a thorough investigation I'm sure about the situation in Durham.


  3. Coach Sam Williams was an assistant at Duke but came to Louisville. More JoAnne P. fallout? Your thoughts Paulie?

    The Real Joe Hill

    1. Williams was an outstanding high school player here in Louisville in the early 1990's and I would venture a guess that she jumped at the opportunity to return to her home town Louisville to coach when Beth Ann Ord took the Weber State head coaching job. Whether there were any problems with Coach P is not known to me. Williams also coached under Doug Bruno at DePaul and certainly must of learned a lot during those days.


  4. Coaching under Bruno (had no idea who he was until DePaul game) and Walz sure does t hurt the resume. Amazing what Coach Heard has done with two straight 27 win seasons. The last one without starting point guard
    Paulie, has Coach Heard's success surprised you?


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