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A blog on UConn women's basketball.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Familiar haunts for Rutgers' C. Vivan Stringer

There was no need for anybody affiliated with UConn or the NCAA to show Hall of Fame Rutgers coach C/ Vivian Stringer the way to her team's locker room inside Gampel Pavilion.

She has played more than her share of games in Storrs, that is for sure.

Stringer chose her words carefully when discussing any potential annoyance at being sent to play in the subregional at UConn.

"Shazam, the NCAA said 'come back to UConn, Shazam,'" Stringer said. "Interesting.

"I am familiar, I even knew where I was supposed to go in the locker room."

Rutgers will play fellow former Big East and American Athletic Conference member Seton Hall in the first round of the NCAA tournament on Saturday.

"I am really happy for our team to get an opportunity to witness to experience that great crowd support, that is trusting and hoping that we can get past Seton Hall, that is not a given," Stringer said. "What are the odds of that we would play Seton Hall again in the first round of the NCAA just like we did in the WNIT. I think it is exciting, our players are somewhat familiar with those players. The NCAA people probably said 'this would be really great' because we can get all of the fans so I am looking forward to that. It is close it is a bus ride and we can play UConn as well."

A year ago at this time it appeared as if UConn and Rutgers would meet in the regular season even after the Scarlet Knights headed to the Big Ten before that fell through.

"Let me say it like this, we have also had discussions about their being mandates for Seton Hall and Rutgers to play," Stringer said. "Do you know how many teams there are in the Big Ten? 14 or something like that. This makes sense where we are (to play) Seton Hall and Connecticut so yes, I am sure we are in the process of doing that. Everything will be taken consideration. Our RPI will be helped by a Connecticut game, our RPI now will not be at all hurt and perhaps helped with a Seton Hall game as well so that is possible. Quite honestly I would like to have some warm weather as well so I'd like to play with that too. It is nice to take a trip to North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Florida so all of those things are taken into consideration.

"Let me say this, if you look at all the teams that were part of the Big East were powerful as they left. Look at what happened at Notre Dame, they dominated that conference and Geno is going to dominate the world so that happens. Same thing with DePaul, not one of those teams that was a part of that Big East were slouches. We did have the most powerful basketball conference in the country but you wouldn't have found Muffet (McGraw, Notre Dame's head coach) asking could be please play Connecticut again and again and again. Now that we split up it is probably good for the basketball fans across the country. These teams that have been a part of the Big East and have been separated will have a chance to get together on a national stage probably at an Elite Eight level or something like that."

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