Women's Tournament 2012: Brittney Griner Makes Baylor Unbeatable

Eric Ball@@BigLeagueEballFeatured ColumnistMarch 28, 2012

SAN ANTONIO - APRIL 04:  Center Brittney Griner #42 of the Baylor Bears is pressured by Tina Charles #31 and Caroline Doty #5 of the Connecticut Huskies during the Women's Final Four Semifinals at the Alamodome on April 4, 2010 in San Antonio, Texas.  (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Jeff Gross/Getty Images

The Baylor Bears are the overwhelming favorites to cut down the nets at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado next week solely because of one player.

That one player may be the greatest women’s player to ever play the game. Brittney Griner is in a class of her own.

The 6’8’’ junior was a unanimous selection on the Associated Press’ All-American team on Tuesday just hours after leading the charge for the Lady Bears' second Final Four in the past three seasons. This is her second straight year landing on the exclusive team.

After averaging 23.4 points, 9.4 rebounds and 5.2 blocks, in addition to two impressive dunks in the NCAA tournament, there is only one thing left for Griner to complete.

The Bears are two wins away from having the distinction of being the only team in NCAA history to finish the season 40-0.

Lisa Leslie, Rebecca Lobo, Candace Parker and Chamique Holdsclaw all had incredibly successful collegiate careers, but none of them were as dominant on both sides of the floor.

That’s what sets Griner apart. Despite the opponent being well aware of her in the paint, she still swats away shots at historic marks while playing in a power conference. Her anticipation and explosive leaping ability allows her to make the late adjustment and still swat the ball into the stands. As a scorer, she has a deadly back-to-the-basket game with soft touch on a jumper with decent range.

She is as complete a player as the women’s game has ever seen and is the main reason her Lady Bears are absolutely steamrolling through the tournament.

The Bears have outscored opponents in four NCAA tournament games by 94 points, or a 23.5 PPG average. The toughest game the Lady Bears have faced was Georgia Tech in the Sweet Sixteen, when they only won 83-68.

That’s the luxury of having a player that can control everything on both sides of the floor.

So make sure to tune in to the Final Four on Sunday and get an up-close look at history in the making. If Griner can pull off 40-0, she’ll forever be remembered as the greatest women’s college basketball player of all time.

Who will be the first pick in the WNBA draft? You must be joking.

Updated women’s bracket can be found here


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