Opinion from OU Senior Associate Athletics Director for Communications Kenny Mossman.
Random observations at the end of the basketball season:
When 300+ schools begin a season vying for a national basketball title, nothing past the second round of the NCAA Tournament can be deemed "disappointing."
While I don't have an alternative for capturing mood and atmosphere, television producers really need to give us a break from the bench, spouse, parents, et al, shots. Winners are elated, losers are disappointed. That much we know. It has been that way since the first Olympiad.
Too much was made of Courtney Paris' senior night declaration. Courtney was obviously trying to say that she felt she owed the university something in return for the experience she enjoyed here. It wasn't anything remotely close to a guarantee. A gesture maybe, but a guarantee only after some media manufacturing.
A wise man once said that a team must have a great point guard to advance in the tournament. But you could be just as wise if you said that a team needs a three-point deadeye and a dominating post player. In other words, you'd better have a little bit of everything, and trying to hone it down to one position is nonsense.
The Jeff Capel hire has to go down as one of the all-timers.
If you could have a team that either out-rebounded every opponent or committed fewer turnovers than every opponent, which would you choose? Turnovers are as obvious as the midcourt logo, but second-chance points are just as lethal. I can't come up with a rock-solid answer to that one.
Danielle Robinson is maybe the best player I have ever seen at getting from the point to the basket. Why? Because ordinarily a player who has zero three-point baskets finds it very difficult to penetrate. The fact that D-rob still gets to the hoop through soft defenses is amazing. I am guessing her off-season will include a bunch of three-point practice. Once she adds that shot, look out.
The Sherri Coale hire has to go down as one of the all-timers.
We need more good officials and television crews. Those that we have now are being asked to do too much.
The loss of Amanda Thompson down the stretch was too often overlooked.
I sure wish all of the tournament games were televised end to end rather than some simultaneously.
As many schools come up with flashy ways to entertain during halftime and times out, the NCAA Tournament has remained pretty sleepy. That needs to change. Placing a microphone in front of each band, something that began years and years ago at most schools, would be a good and inexpensive start.
If enjoyment of the game was a measurable statistic, Whitney Hand would lead the nation.
At some sites, the NCAA conducts random drug testing, which means that student-athletes must provide a urine sample. Interestingly, even if they want to comply immediately, the players are forced to wait out the 30 minutes of mandatory media availability before they can produce a sample. Now I am all for media access, but ...
I will always have great, great admiration for Ashley Paris and Taylor Griffin. I hope they know how much they were viewed and appreciated on their own merits.
The Big 12 is a bona fide basketball conference.
Watching Omar Leary cry openly after the loss to North Carolina reminded me that whether you're Blake Griffin or a role player, the game means a lot to everyone who puts on the uniform. Thanks, Omar, for caring that much.
From a college website standpoint, SoonerSports.com swept both the men's and women's titles.
In reverse, the atmosphere at the Ford Center for the women's regional final reminded me of what the Sooner men faced against Syracuse at Albany in the 2003 East Regional Final. It's a tall order for the out-of-state visitor.
Here's to hoping the women's committee will look at mid-sized markets for its tournament. Oklahoma City withstanding, there were too many empty seats at the regionals. I was at Illinois State University when it hosted the Midwest Regional in 1999. A non-air-conditioned building of 10,200 in Normal, Ill., was filled to 90 percent of capacity for both dates. Normal isn't Miami, but the atmosphere was electric.
I sure don't want to deny anyone the right to earn a buck, but for the sake of the college game I wish the NBA's early entry rule mirrored that of the NFL.
If the economy doesn't improve by next season, there will need to be more consideration of fans and media relative to where the teams are sent. Such a change has the potential to unfairly advantage some schools (would you want to play Kansas in Kansas City?), but the travel hardships we witnessed this year were real.
Reflecting on this basketball season from a Sooner perspective is a warming prospect amidst a slow-to-arrive spring.
an inside perspective from the OU
Athletics Department on the latest Sooner sports topics.
Senior Associate Athletics Director for Communications Kenny
provides his thoughts in his online column