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WBB: Big Twelve
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sybarite
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 Posted: Thu Oct 12th, 2017 08:19 am

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I guess this is a projection of how I think teams will finish this year in conference play.

1.  Texas 25-9 last year, lost to Stanford in the Sweet Sixteen.

Returning starters:
24 Joyner Holmes 6-4 Soph third leading scorer, leading rebounder, SUSPENDED until December (hopefully, she will return)
23 Ariel Atkins 5-11 Sr second leading scorer
11 Brooke McCarty 5-4 Sr leading scorer, leader in assists

Reserves in order of minutes played:
10 Lashann Higgs 5-9 Jr
1   Alicia Sutton 5-8 Soph
31 Audrey-Ann Caron-Goudreau 6-4 Sr
12 Jada Underwood 6-0 Soph
5   Jordan Hosey  6-1 Jr
30 Khaleann Caron Goudreau 6-4 Jr
14 Olamide Aborowa  6-3 Jr

Newcomers:
4  Destiny Littleton 5-9 Fr
15 Chasity Patterson 5-5 Fr
33 Rellah Boothe 6-3 Fr
40 Jatarie White 6-4 Jr

My rankings of Texas are based on the return of Holmes.  It seems like a mystery as to why she is suspended for the Fall.  But, Texas will be good if she returns, and will fall a bit if she doesn't.   She can take over a game with her athleticism.  She can also fall asleep at times.  I expect she'll do well now that the freshman year is out of the way.

OU usually (not always) has handled Atkins, who is an outstanding big guard, almost small forward-type.  She can make things happen.  She can also hit the three.

Everyone's favorite is McCarty who is quick and deadly.  She is the one that I can't wait to see graduate.  She can beat you by driving in for a ten foot jump shot (at 5-5).  She can kill you with the three.  She finds the open player.  While all of the pundits are fighting over the best player in the league, she may be it.

Higgs and Sutton are pretty good.  Higgs can explode with some speed.  But, they may not step in as starters.  I don't know what the story was with Jada Underwood last year, but she was the hope as a scoring guard.  She can shoot.  She will get her shot.

But, I would not be surprised if Texas started two newcomers, maybe three at the beginning of the year.  I suspect that they will need the height of South Carolina transfer Jatarie White until Holmes returns.  She was a McDonald's All-American in 2013-14.  Played two years as a reserve at SC.  I saw one mention of her as though she was the superstar at center, but superstars rarely spend two years on the bench.

The three freshmen were all McDonald's All-Americans.  I expect Rellah Boothe to contribute heavily as a freshman, if not start.  She was the MVP of the McDonald's game.  Littleton is the all-time highschool scoring leader of California and the Gatorade Player of the Year for California.  OU recruited Patterson hard (I must admit that I didn't think much of her when I saw her in a couple of AAU games, but I didn't think much of Holmes either).  I think Texas sees her as another McCarty.  I saw her more as a Aaryn Ellenberg who had difficulty handling the ball in a crowd and shooting in a crowd.  She did win the McDonald's three point contest, which is unguarded.  She could surprise me.  Holmes did.

Texas has a lot of pieces and a few really good ones.  A team with Holmes, Atkins, and McCarty can beat you if they have any help.  White may be the post help they need (got two coming in next year).  I suspect that Boothe will start or play a lot immediately.  The guard beside McCarty may start out as Sutton or Underwood.

Texas has enough, more than enough if their freshmen are as good as they think.  I think they will wait for next year to get all the pieces they need for a Final Four or more.  But, Baylor should be down a bit after losing four of their top five scorers.  They may need a year or so to rebuild.



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 Posted: Thu Oct 12th, 2017 08:22 am

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http://www.big12sports.com/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=10410&ATCLID=211672418

sybarite
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 Posted: Thu Oct 12th, 2017 08:55 am

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2.  Baylor 33-4 lost in the Elite Eight to Mississippi State

Returning starters:

21 Kalani Brown 6-7 Jr leading scorer and rebounder
4   Kristy Wallace 5-11 Sr seventh leading scorer, assist and steal leader

Reserves:  in order of minutes played

24 Natalie Chou 6-1 Soph
15 Lauren Cox 6-4 Soph
1   Dekeiya Cohen 6-2 Sr
20 Juicy Landrum 5-9 Soph

Newcomers:

11 Alexis Morris 5-6 Fr
3   Trinity Oliver 5-11 Fr
2   Didi Richards 6-1 Fr
12 Moon Ursin 5-7 Fr

Brown and Wallace will start.  I anticipate that Chou and Cox are certain starters.  That kind of leaves you looking for a sixth man and a starting point guard.  I wouldn't be at all surprised to see Morris as the point, although that is Ursin's position, with Richards as a sixth man.  Morris and Richards were McDonald's All-Americans.

The team is a bit thinner this year.  A couple of guards transferred, one of whom was given high ratings by Baylor going into last year.  Mompremier transferred.  That was an "ouch!"  After graduating Nina Davis, Alexis Jones, and Alexis Prince, the loss of Mompremier hurt.  Khadijah Cave, a post who gave us problems, also graduated.  They lost a lot of what made them good.  You have a solid interior if you have Mompremier, Cox, and Cave on the bench.

Baylor should be beatable this year unless their freshmen are a lot better than anticipated.  I expect them to be a solid contender for the Big Twelve title.  But, I think Texas has a bit more of what it takes.  Is Wallace their floor leader?  She is deceptively good.  But, she doesn't seem to be in the Baylor mold.  I think they'll be top ten or fifteen.  I just don't think they will be dominant this year or a contender for a national title. Davis, Jones, Prince, and Mompremier were a bit much to lose.

sybarite
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 Posted: Thu Oct 12th, 2017 12:35 pm

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3.  Oklahoma:  The Sooners were 23-10 and third in the conference (13-5),

OU lost 108-82 at Washington, a team we had beaten two straight years, in the second round of the NCAA.

Returning starters:

23 Maddie Manning 6-2 Sr leading scorer, second rebounds, third assists, first steals
0   Vionise Pierre-Louis (Vivi) 6-4 Sr second scorer, leading rebounder, leading shot blocker
21 Gabbi Ortiz 5-9 Sr leading FT shooter

Reserves:  by minutes played

1   LaNesia Williams 5-7 Sr
24 Ijeoma Odimgbe (EJ) 6-4 Jr
12 Gileysa Penzo 5-9 Jr (Giley)
11 Morgan Rich 5-10 Soph, will redshirt to recover from ACL

Freshmen:

22 Ana Llanusa 6-0 Fr
3   Mandy Simpson 6-0 Fr
14 Shaina Pellington 5-7 Fr

I like the three starters as much as I like the returning starters from Texas or Baylor.  It's finding the next three that is the problem.  EJ will back up and rotate with Vivi, and I think we will see an EJ that we haven't seen before.  She was developing some skills later in the year, and I think a summer will have made her valuable.

I fully expect Ana to start and be better than anyone that we lost.  She can rebound in a crowd, has a nose for the ball, handles it well, and can shoot from anywhere on the court.  She tends to be rather smooth.

I think the fifth starting position may prove interesting.  LaNesia looks serious this year.  She has always had more ability than she has shown.  She just makes mental errors.  I think she has developed a jump shot and a determination.  But, she will have difficulty holding off Shaina who is a pure athlete who can take over a game with speed.  There was an American/Canadian game on something called Border Wars, and Shaina got into a duel with Renia Davis, the forward we recruited who went to Tennessee.  Davis won because of her ability to rebound her own shot (Canada's bigs were horrible), but Shaina kept Canada in it for two and a half quarters fighting off Davis.  Davis was US MVP, and Shaina was Canadian MVP.  She plays a lot taller than 5-7.  Extremely quick hands and feet.

But, I don't know that we can discount Mandy.  She likes rebounding.  We have needed that.  I think she will be a change-up to go a bit bigger at times.  Do not discount Penzo.  I think she will surprise.

I think this team will be better than last year's team.  Yes, we graduated six seniors and had two transfers.  I think the three newcomers will be better than they were.  I think we will be a better shooting team, and we had a problem last year trying to keep pressure off the interior.  I think 1-2-3 in the Big Twelve will be close, maybe 1-2-3-4.


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 Posted: Thu Oct 12th, 2017 01:28 pm

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I hope we can be a comfortable three, but I think our defense is suspect and rebounding may very well be. How good a shooting team we will be remains to be seen. My hope is in Maddie. She says that she understands that she must be more aggressive and score much more. If she does we would be a solid three.

Last edited on Thu Oct 12th, 2017 01:28 pm by jdurrett

sybarite
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 Posted: Thu Oct 12th, 2017 03:06 pm

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4.  West Virginia 26-8  lost to Maryland, 56-83, in the second round

Returning starters:

5    Tynice Martin 5-11 Jr  leading scorer
11  Teana Muldrow 6-1 Sr number two scorer
22  Katrina Pardee 5-9 Jr
12  Chania Ray 5-8 Sr  assist and steal leader

Reserves:  in order of minutes played

13  Kristina King 6-3 Sr
24  Anja Martin 5-11 Sr

Disappeared:
Alexis Brewer 5-9 Jr
Marlena Schmidt 6-6 Soph
Bailey Thomas 5-9 Soph

Newcomers:

0   Naomi Davenport 6-0 Jr
34  Teresa Ekhelar 6-6 Redshirt Soph
2   Kysre Gondrezick 5-9 Soph
3   Destiny Harden 6-0 Fr
1   Ashley Jones 5-7 Fr
55 Krystaline McCune 6-4 redshirt Fr
35 Makayla Stanley 6-3 Fr
4   Nia Staples  5-9 Fr

The four starters are excellent.  But, they really depended a lot on Montgomery's presence on the interior, and she is gone.  What is their defense now?  Well, it is always hack and hack some more.  But, will it be post-oriented?

Harden and Jones are the highest-rated of a rather unrated group at #57 and 75, respectively, with HoopGurlz.  Gondrezick is the best recruit, and she has to sit out a year after transfer.  Ekhelar is a back-up Ohio State transfer.  If there is any help for the starting four, it will likely be from Harden or Jones.

West Virginia seems to have half of a new team every year.  Wonder how they get around the graduation rules?  But, they may be quite good if they can overcome the lack of a post.  Martin is as good as there is in the Big Twelve.  I also liked Ray.  Muldrow has always been good.

Somewhere in the top four.

sybarite
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 Posted: Fri Oct 13th, 2017 12:08 am

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5.  Iowa State 18-13  Lost in the first round to Syracuse.

Returning starters:

21 Bridget Carleton 6-1 Jr
32 Meredith Burkhall 6-3 Jr

Reserves:

3   Emily Durr 6-0 Sr
13 Adriana Camber 5-10 Soph
10 Nia Washington 5-7 Soph
30 Claire Ricketts 6-3 Redshirt Jr
2   Sofija Zivaljevic 5-9 Soph

Newcomers:

1   Madison Wise 6-1 Fr
4   Rae Johnson 5-7 Fr
12 Bride Kennedy-Hopoate 6-4 Jr
25 Kristin Scott 6-3 Fr
33 Alexa Middleton 5-9 Sr

Departures:
5-10 G Lexi Albrecht graduation
6-0 F Heather Bowe graduation
6-2 F Jensen Jordan graduation
5-10 F Seanna Johnson graduation
5-8 G Jadda Buckley retired
5-9 G Tee Tee Starks transferred to Arizona

Iowa State lost a lot when they lost Seanna Johnson and Jadda Buckley, both of whom gave us problems, at least at times.  They return a couple of very good ones in  Carleton and Burkhall, Carleton being one of the most dangerous players in the conference.  Emily Durr will probably be a starter this year.  She had some starts last year and was pretty good. 

While last year's reserves will be of value, I suspect that the recruiting class will provide most of their top seven.  Middleton is a transfer from Tennessee.  After being a McDonald's All-American, she was a back up for them for three years.  But, she has played a lot of big-time basketball.  Wise was about #45 (approx) in HoopGurlz and may get a look at a forward spot.  Johnson and Scott were highly-regarded prospects out of Minnesota.  Kennedy-Hopoate was regarded by some as the top JC prospect.

The team would have been a lot better if Buckley had not decided that enough was enough.  But, this will be a typical Fennelly team.  He will have a very dangerous player in Carleton that will draw a lot of attention.  But, you can't look past  Burkhall and Durr.  He will find a way to make this into a team that will somehow end up 10-8.

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 Posted: Fri Oct 13th, 2017 06:01 am

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6.  Oklahoma State  17-15 lost in first round of NIT to Abilene Christian

Returning Starters:

54 Kaylee Jensen  6-4 Sr  leading scorer and rebounder
3   Mandy Coleman 6-3 Sr #2 scorer and rebounder
24 Karli Wheeler 5-8 Jr fourth leading scorer

Reserves:  minutes played

11 Areanna Combs 5-10 Soph
20 LaTashia Jones 6-2 Jr
13 Jentry Holt 6-3 Jr
10 Shakila Small 6-3 Sr

Newcomers:

14 Braxtin Miller 5-10 Fr G
23 Jaden Hobbs 5-8 RedshirtFr G
25 Abbie Winchester 6-1 Fr F
30 Maria Castro 6-0 Jr G
32 Loryn Goodwin 5-9 Sr G
33 Clitan de Sousa 6-0 Jr G

Departures:

Katelyn Loecher 6-0 F graduated
Diana Omozee 5-11 G graduated
Mercado Madison 5-4 G graduated
Alexis Bryant 6-3 Fr ?
Rodrea Echols 5-10 Fr G ?

Kaylee Jensen is still in Stillwater. Finally, it's her last year.  She is a tough load to handle:  good shooter from two or three, good rebounder.  Mandy Coleman adds a little movement to the interior and can be explosive.  Jentry Holt exhibited that she can be difficult to contain.  Beyond that, OSU had little help for the interior.  I doubt that help comes from the bench.

The recruiting class has some guard help.  Miller and Winchester were top sixty type guards.  Hobbs was good in highschool in Alva.  We haven't seen her due to an injury last year.  Maria Castro, a JC player from the national championship team, may be the first  to show what she can do.  She did pretty well at the JC level.  Loryn Goodwin began at North Texas in 2013 and was the newcomer of the year at UTSA last year.  De Sousa was injured most of last year after a good first year in JC.

Last year, we beat OSU when they kept turning it over---no guards.  They have guards now, but I doubt they will be Big Twelve quality this year.  Give them a year.  OSU will be a tough opponent because of Jensen and Coleman.  We kept Coleman in foul trouble last year.  If guard help does develop, OSU could jump into the top five.

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 Posted: Fri Oct 13th, 2017 08:55 am

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7.  TCU  12-18

Returning starters:

25 Keanna Ray 6-1 Soph
22 Jordan Moore 6-3 Jr
1 Toree Thompson 5-10 Sr
00 Amy Okonkwo 6-2 Jr

Reserves:  order of minutes played

4   Amber Ramirez 5-8 Soph
33 Adeola Okomolafa 6-3 Soph
3   Mikayla Christian 5-9 Soph
21 Sydney Coleman 6-1 Sr
10 Danielle Rainey 5-8 Soph
31 Ella Hellessey 6-2 Soph

Newcomers:

15 Jayde Woods 6-1 Soph
20 Lauren Heard 5-9 Fr
24 Dakota Vann 6-0 Jr

Departures:

Jada Butts 5-10 G graduated
Carol Willie 6-2 C graduated
A J Alix 5-6 G transferred to Florida State

The loss of Butts and Alix won't help.  But, they were guards in a team of guards.  Jordan Moore is the closest that they have to an interior player, and she is pretty good, but a little overmatched being alone.  Okonkwo started in 14 games and was the third leading scorer. 

Keanna Ray has been the best, overall, of their returning guards.  She was second to Alix in assists, led in steals, and blocked 28 shots.  Ramirez was the incoming star, but she hasn't set the world on fire yet.  She did hit the three at 36.79%, barely more than Ray, but her two point field goal percentage was lower than her three at 34.18%.  With Thompson, Ray, and Ramirez, TCU is OK.

The incoming group features more guards.  Woods was a fairly highly-rated recruit who transferred from Oregon after ten games and sat out Spring.  Should be eligible by Spring.  Vann might prove more valuable if her resume holds.  She started 29 of 30 games for Loyola (Chicago) and transferred to Butler JC where she led them in pretty much everything.  She may be more ready to play than the other recruits.

TCU has been recruiting height.  They are still in on some height this year.  But, they won't rise until they can get some size.  The Big Twelve requires strength in the middle.  Regan Pebley may be the tallest on the team.  I hope she survives.  I like her teams.

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 Posted: Sun Oct 15th, 2017 10:32 am

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8.  Texas Tech 14-17

Returning starters:

4  Recee Caldwell 5-9 Jr G
12 Jada Terry 6-4 Sr C
20 Brittany Brewer 6-5 Soph F

Reserves:

32 Dayo Olabode 6-2 Sr F
10 Grayson Bright 5-11 Soph G
30 Zuri Sanders 6-0 Jr F
42 Ionna McKenzie 6-2 Sr C
00 Brielle Blaire 6-2 Sr F

Newcomers:

1 Erin DeGrate 6-6 Soph C Transfer from Louisville
2 Sydney Goodson 5-8 Soph G Transfer from Arizona State
3 Lindsay Whilby 5-11 Fr G
5 Tihana Stojsavljavic 6-2 Soph F Transfer from Maine
14 Lauren Harrison 6-0 Soph G
23 Angel Hayden 5-6  Fr G

Departures:

Ivonne Cook-Taylor 5-8 G Graduated
Larryn Brooks 5-6 G Graduated and transferred out for family reasons
Arella Guirantes 5-11 G Transferred to Rutgers

Texas Tech may be a bit improved.  They retain some good ones in Caldwell, Brewer, and Olabode.  They can play with anyone in the Big Twelve.  The loss of Cook-Taylor hurts, and Brooks was one of the rotation.  Guirantes was one who was being sold as a future for Tech, and she transferred.  Tech retains five who played a considerable amount or started. 

I don't know how the transfers will play out.  DeGrate was highly-recruited.  The two freshmen guards were a four-star and a three-star.

Caldwell can score, and Brewer was one of the better freshmen.  I've always liked Olabode.  Terry can cope.  They do need some support to improve.

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 Posted: Sun Oct 15th, 2017 01:54 pm

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9.  Kansas 8-22

Returning starters:

22 Chayla Cheadle 6-0 Sr F
33 Kylie Kopatich 5-10 Jr G
3   Jessica Washington 5-8 Sr G

Reserves:

1   Chelsea Lott 6-3 Jr C
24 Sydney Benoit 5-10 Sr G
23 Eboni Watts 5-6 Sr G

Newcomers:

0   Christalah Lyons 5-5 Jr G
2   Brianna Osorio 5-8 Jr G
12 Micaela Wilson 6-2 Fr
14 Austin Richardson 6-0 Jr F
31 Brittany Franklin 6-5 Fr C
35 Bailey Helgren 6-5 Fr C
50 Sara Boric 6-5 Jr C
55 Tyler Johnson 6-2 Redshirt Soph F

Departures:

Lisa Blair 6-5 C Graduated
Jada Brown 6-0 F Graduated
Caelyn Manning-Allen 6-4 F Graduated
Timeka O'Neal 5-4 G Graduated
Sydney Umeri 6-0 F Graduated
Aisia Robertson 5-7 Jr G transferred to New Mexico
Jayde Christopher 5-8 Jr G transferred to Boise State
McKenzie Calvert 5-8 Jr G Suspended, transferred

Kansas will be dependent on a lot of newcomers to help three good returning starters.  Washington, Cheadle, and Kopatich can play with anyone.  The returning reserves have very little experience as the more experienced ones transferred. 

The influx of JC transfers should provide some depth and at least a capable starter or two.  They came from successful JC programs.  Wilson was something like  a #24 blue star guard.  Franklin and Helgren were top 100 in one scouting service or another. 

This class of newcomers should provide a little better talent than the Jayhawks have had, and a better class is on the way.  This may be a program on the rise, albeit there is a long way to go to become respectable.


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 Posted: Sun Oct 15th, 2017 02:35 pm

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10.  Kansas State 23-11 lost to Stanford 69-48 in second round

Returning starters:

50 Shaelyn Martin 6-1 Sr G
22 Karyla Middlebrook 5-7 Sr G
11 Peyton Williams 6-4 Soph F

Reserves:

1 Kaylee Page 6-3 Sr F
10 Kayla Goth 6-0 Jr F

Newcomers:

2   Cymone Goodrich 5-10 Fr G #28 HoopGurlz
15 Kali Jones  6-2 Jr F  Good JC rebounder
40 Mary Lakes 6-4 Fr C  #200 Blue Star
12 Rachel Ranke 6-1 Fr G #58 HoopGurlz
33 Ashley Ray 6-4 Fr C #193 Blue Star
0   Anastasia Tsybaeva 6-7 Jr C
5   Alisa Wiggins 5-8 Fr G

Departures:

Mercedes Brooks 5-11 Soph G Transferred
Breanna Lewis 6-5 P Graduated
Lanie Page 6-3 Jr F Transferred
Jessica Sheble 6-3 F Graduated
Kelly Thompson 5-9 G Graduated
Kindred Wesemann 5-6 G Graduated
Eternati Willock 6-4 Soph F Kicked off team

You have three starters back, as well as two reserves.  That's it.  Your best returning scorers were 9.12, 6.21, 5.79, andn 3.68 points per game.  You just lost Breanna Lewis and Kindred Wesemann, your two  dominant stars around whom you had built your team.  Probably your best reserve was kicked off the team.  Martin, Middlebrook, and Williams just aren't that exciting.

They may have some help among the newcomers.  But, they won't be in the class of what they lost.  Kansas State may have difficulty keeping up.




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