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No Surprise Pick In Women's NCAA Tourney

Rodd CaytonCorrespondent IMarch 17, 2009

Remember when women's college basketball was a few rare talents sprinkled about the country amid oceans of "nice girls?"

Well, the game has come a long way since the AIAW days.

Sure, there still arean't many dunks, but there's more actual passing and smart shooting.

So, while the women's NCAA Tournament is still in the shadow of the men's tourney, the organization has made some smart moves to get a little of the spotlight for the women.

Among those are announcing the pairings the day after the men's bracket is revealed, and playing the women's title game the day after a men's team is crowned.

In a certain Northeastern city, there's a possibility that the second week of April will be clogged with celebration.

After a thorough bracket analysis, This is who I expect to see in St. Louis for the Women's Final Four.

South Dakota State (Raleigh Regional champs)

Projected path: Beat TCU, Baylor, LSU and Kansas State.

Key players: Forwards Jennifer Warkenthien and Ketty Cornemann, Guard Jill Young.

Could be replaced by: Kansas State, Vanderbilt, Maryland.

Oklahoma (Oklahoma City Regional champs)

Projected path: Beat Prairie View, Iowa, Xavier and Rutgers.

Key players: Center Courtney Paris, Forward Ashley Paris, Guard Danielle Robinson.

Could be replaced by: Rutgers, North Carolina.


Connecticut (Trenton Regional champs)

Projected path: Beat Vermont, Temple, Cal and Notre Dame.

Key players: Forward Maya Moore, Center Tina Charles. 

Could be replaced by: Virginia, Texas A&M


Stanford (Berkeley Regional champs)

Projected path: Beat UC Santa Barbara, San Diego State, Texas and Iowa State.

Key players: Center Jayne Appel, Forwards Kayla Pedersen and Nnemkadi Ogwumike

Could be replaced by: Iowa State, Duke


Eventual Champion: Connecticut

The Huskies are 33-0, and rarely have rarely been challenged this season. They haven't won a national championship since 2004, which is the equivalent of 200 years for the Chicago Cubs. Now is a good time to have forgotten how to lose.

Oklahoma will be a worthy runner-up, but the Paris sisters are no match for UConn Coach Geno Auriemma and Moore.

Not only that, but there could be an opportunity to one-up, or at least equal the UConn men's team's season, which is a No. 1 regional seed as well.


Unscientifically speaking ....

Sixty-three coin flips resulted in a Final Four of South Dakota State, Florida State, Ball State and

Xavier, with the Musketeers taking it all.

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