I Forgot the Gamecocks! NCAA Women’s Bracket Seeds DePaul #7

I predicted my top seeds for the NCAA Women’s Bracket on my Facebook Token Female  page. Guess what they were…..Oh, never mind…..I’ll tell you:

  • UConn (34-0) #1 all year on the AP Poll
  • Notre Dame (32-0) #2 all year on the AP Poll
  • Tennessee (27-5) #3 or 4 all year
  • Baylor  (29-4) #4 to end the regular season

Your Token Female was right on three counts. The fourth? Dead wrong. Where was Baylor? They’re a #2 seed, right under undefeated Notre Dame. I forgot the Gamecocks! There they are, at the top of the NCAA Women’s Bracket. Damn you, South Carolina! How could you sneak up on me like that? Aleighsa Welch, Tiffany Mitchell, and Alaina Coates, you surprised me!

The steely stare of South Carolina's Dawn Staley with Aleighsa Welch, Alaina  Coates, and Tiffany Mitchell's joy. Hey, you're a #1 seed...lighten up!
The steely stare of South Carolina’s Dawn Staley with Aleighsa Welch, Alaina Coates, and Tiffany Mitchell’s joy. Hey, you’re a #1 seed…lighten up!

Well, here’s how they got to the top of the Stanford Region:

  • South Carolina (27-4) had won its most games in 34 years and earned its first-ever SEC regular-season title.
  • It’s  South Carolina’s third straight trip and 11th overall to the Big Dance

I didn’t think they were going to be a top seed…maybe #2 or #3, because they lost to their better competition in the University of North Carolina Tar Heels and the Tennessee Volunteers during the regular season. They lost in the SEC Conference Tournament to Kentucky. Credit their coach, Dawn Staley. She’s making her ninth NCAA appearance as a coach. The Hall of Famer led Virginia to three Final Fours as one of the game’s best players. They will open up against Cal State Northridge in the first round in Seattle. Stanford, who lost early in the Pac-12 tournament, still managed a #2 seed. They’re coming to the home of the ketchup and mustard of Iowa State in Ames to play the first two rounds. Penn State is the #3 seed and North Carolina, #4.  Closer to Home….

Chanise Jenkins leads the cheers for DePaul's #7 seed
Chanise Jenkins leads the cheers for DePaul’s #7 seed

Every time I hear someone say “There’s no Illinois team in the NCAA’s!” I JUST WANT TO FUME. For the  12th straight year, the No. 23/22 DePaul women’s basketball team is heading to the NCAA Tournament.  The Blue Demons are one of just nine programs to appear in each of the last 12 NCAA Tournaments.  They are joined in this elite category by Connecticut, Duke, Georgia, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Stanford, Tennessee and Vanderbilt. A dozen times, they’ve been in the BIG DANCE. What are they…chopped liver? The DePaul women are the only basketball program – men or women – from the state of Illinois represented in the NCAA Tournament field this season. And it was a well-deserved honor. DePaul had one of the most successful seasons in recent history and set programs records for points scored (2,763), 3-pointers (285), assists (654) and its 27 wins ties for the second-most in school history. I thought their #7 seed was a bit low, but they will face No. 10 Oklahoma on Saturday, March 22 at Cameron Indoor Stadium in Durham, N.C. DePaul and Oklahoma’s first-round game will be played 30-minutes following the Duke vs. Winthrop game which is scheduled to tip at 10:00 a.m. (CT). Both games will air on ESPN2. Duke was chosen as the No. 2 seed and Winthrop is the No. 15 in the Lincoln, Nebraska Region. The winners of Saturday’s first round games play on Monday. DePaul (27-6) is making its 19th NCAA Tournament with its first appearance coming in 1990. As readers of Token Female noted last week, the Blue Demons earned the Big East’s  automatic bid after capturing the league’s tournament title last week. #10 Oklahoma (18-14) reached the quarterfinals of the Big 12 Tournament this season and is making its 17th NCAA Tournament appearance.  The Sooners are 4-6 in their last 10 games and are 0-1 in neutral site games this season. The Sooners started their season by making the championship game of the Preseason WNIT The Blue Demons and Sooners are meeting for just the second time ever.  The two schools last played when they opened the 2006-07 season in Norman, Oklahoma. The Sooners won the game 105-71. DePaul is 10-18 all-time in NCAA games and reached the Sweet 16 in 2011 and in 2006. The Blue Demons have reached the second round eight times, including in two of the last three seasons. Stay tuned for updates throughout the big dance. I’m expecting a serious dosey-doe.