Connecticut. Hey, if you go 33-0 in the regular season — playing in the Big East — you're not just the favorite, you're the one EXPECTED to win it all. Which is why coach Geno Auriemma's biggest problem entering this tournament may be keeping his players on the same even keel they've played with all season. The Huskies have tremendous talent and have defeated opponents by an average of more than 31 points this season. But let's not forget this: In 1997, UConn was undefeated entering the NCAA Tournament — and got upset in the Elite Eight. Nothing's for sure in the Big Dance.
In terms of the entire field, this may be the weakest set of contenders to challenge the Huskies. But watch out for No. 2 seed Texas A&M and third-seeded Florida State. Gary Blair's Aggies were one remarkable Tennessee play away from advancing to the Final Four last season. Danielle Gant is a star, and is surrounded by a strong supporting cast. And Blair? He's an old veteran who knows how to get the best from his players. If they make it that far, the Huskies shouldn't sleep on Texas A&M. The Seminoles have won seven of their last nine games, and although their last outing was an 18-point loss to Duke, they have tourney experience and the ACC schedule makes them well prepared.
Maya Moore. A two-time Big East player of the year, the sophomore is the first player in Big East history to win the award in each of her first two seasons. She leads the team with 19.1 points and 9.1 rebounds per game and has had double figures in 30 of 31 games this season.
UConn vs. Texas A&M. Both are quick, athletic and like to get up and down the floor which would make for one heck of a matchup. And just imagine the chess match that could play out between the old vets Auriemma and Blair.
Antonya English, Times staff writer