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Women's basketball links: UConn at Maryland previews, more National Letters of Intent, Louisville's 'Thirsty Thursday' win

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10 women's basketball links, with a little something for fans of college and pro (men's and women's) basketball.

Redshirt sophomore is one of the players who Maryland expects to make a difference against UConn tonight.
Redshirt sophomore is one of the players who Maryland expects to make a difference against UConn tonight.
Photo by Geoff Burke | USA Today Sports.

The big game tonight is obviously UConn vs. Maryland - which we'll have a game thread for tonight - so we'll start there and then move to some other interesting links from around the women's basketball world.

  • John Altavilla of the Hartford Courant reported yesterday that UConn coach Geno Auriemma had not chosen who would start in today's game against Maryland, but the choices aren't hard to figure out given their current numbers: "But now with only seven players (and two walk-ons) his choices are limited to Stokes, junior guard Brianna Banks and freshman guard Saniya Chong." Read more >>>
  • Nicholas Fouriezos of The Baltimore Sun reports that the Maryland Terrapins are feeling more confident about this year's meeting with the Connecticut Huskies because they'll be healthy this time around: "Guards Laurin Mincy and Brene Moseley, who missed the UConn games with season-ending ACL injuries last year, are back. Senior center Essence Townsend also tore hers in an exhibition game last season, but now is healthy. Adding to the team's improved depth are three freshmen who have already produced valuable minutes." Of course, the Terps player to watch will be Alyssa Thomas, who was stifled by UConn's defense last season. Read more >>>
  • Mark Wiedmer of the Chattanooga Times Free Press covered Tennessee's "80-56 revenge rout" of Chattanooga which was at least partially inspired by coach Holly Warlick's halftime speech. Of note was Ariel Massengale's 3-point shooting: her 4-for-5 3-point shooting contributed to a team-high 16 points, which has to have Tennessee fans believing in this team's potential. Read more >>>
  • Steve Jones of The Courier Journal reported on Louisville's 88-67 victory over LSU in the Preseason WNIT semifinals. Cardinals coach Jeff Walz praised the play of Shoni Schimmel, who had a season-high 15 points as described by Jones: "Schimmel scored 11 of her season-high 15 points in the first half and had three assists, including a couple of her signature no-look, over-the-shoulder passes. It was a dynamic, bounce-back game after she made only 1 of 13 shots (but had 11 assists) in Tuesday's victory over Quinnipiac." Senior Theresa Plaissance led LSU with 8 rebounds and 13 points on 6-for-10 shooting. Also, to Kansas State: Louisville sees your bacon promotion and raises you a "Thirsty Thursday". Read more >>>
  • Darnell Dickson of the Lincoln Journal Star previewed a game that might end up being a game we wish we had seen between Nebraska and Utah. While Nebraska features 6-foot-2 senior Jordan Hooper, Utah features 6-foot-4 senior forward Michelle Plouffe who, "...is on pace to become just the third player in Utah history to reach 2,000 career points and 1,000 career rebounds." Both might be worth keeping track of for WNBA draft junkies. Read more >>>
  • Maryland Athletics also announced their three 2014 signings, including two with NBA ties: guard Kiara Leslie is the younger sister of 2013 NBA Draft prospect C.J. Leslie (who went undrafted and was cut by the New York Knicks a few weeks ago). 6-foot-3 forward Aja Ellison is the daughter of former NBA player "Never Nervous" Pervis Ellison, who had his best years with the Washington Bullets before injuries shortened his career and coached Aja's AAU team. As another interesting piece of trivia from the release: Ellison's father played with Lexie Brown's father, former Orlando Miracle coach Dee Brown, on the Boston Celtics. Read more >>>
  • Samantha Lin and Juliet Spies-Gans of The Harvard Crimson put together an in-depth feature about Harvard women's basketball coach Kathy Delaney-Smith's journey from a 6-on-6 half court basketball player to coaching Division I basketball today. Throughout the story are anecdotes that demonstrate just how much the trail blazers in women's basketball have had to fight to get to the point the game is at today. Read more >>>
  • Joe Lucia of Awful Announcing gave the recently-released WNBA viewership numbers some context and wrote, "The WNBA is a niche sport - but that's not necessarily a bad thing. And with many sports that aren't named football, ratings are largely dependent on big markets and starpower. With the likes of Griner, Diggins, and Delle Donne, the WNBA is in great shape. It'll be interesting to see if the rise in viewership from 2012 to 2013 leads to another jump for the 2014 season. So much for all of sports being set to men." So there's your response the next time some clown says "nobody" watches the league. Read more >>>
  • Michelle Garcia of SheWired.com weighed in on the matter of the WNBA's makeup training sessions writing, "It doesn't matter how much progress women make. For whatever reason, female professional athletes still have to prove that they can be tough on the court, but only if they girl it up off the court. And even that hinges on what your view of "girl" is." Read more >>>

If there are links that you found interesting, please share them in the comments below or create a fanshot we can share. If you have a longer commentary on something, create a fanpost.