Blogs > Elm City to Eagleville

A blog on UConn women's basketball.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Offensive showcase at Maples Pavilion?

In recent years it has seemingly become a foregone conclusion Connecticut and Stanford would find themselves on the grand stage come late March and early April.

However, the Huskies and Cardinal share more than just annual trips to the Final Four. They also pursue and land many of the nation's most electrifying offensive players.

"I think that is somewhat true," Stanford coach Tara VanDerveer said. "Both Geno and I value offensively skilled players. I think we work hard on the defensive end but we really emphasize playing basketball with a purpose, passing, shooting and in some ways I think our styles are the same. Obviously we are on different coasts and play in different leagues but there are probably a lot of similarities."

Auriemma's Huskies annually ran among the national leaders in points scored, field-goal percentage and assists and it is not by accident.

"Not everybody is capable of recruiting the types of players that Stanford can recruit or Connecticut can recruit so I think we have a huge advantage over some other programs in that we can go out and attract the best offensive players in the country," Auriemma said. "There are teams who can't so they build their teams around defense because they are not skilled enough on the offensive end. I think that is one of the things that has to continue to grow in the women's games in that more teams have to value putting the ball in the basket. I think the game of women's basketball has to be played differently than men's basketball. I always laugh when people who run women's basketball want to showcase our physicality. I don't know that serves any purpose. I think we should showcase people putting the ball in the basket, I think that is what attracts fans, that is what makes the game enjoyable to watch and I think Saturday you have maybe the two best offensive teams in the country and hopefully fans will get a chance to see that. That's not to say we can see who can win 110-109, I don't think that is going to happen but at the same time the way Stanford plays and the way we play,

"I think we are both really good defensive teams, really good. We wouldn't be in the position we are in and we wouldn't be in that many Final Fours if we weren't really good defensive teams but I would like to think that make scoring and scoring often priorities in our programs and that is probably why we attract so many fans"

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