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SELECTION-DAY PRIMER / WOMEN

How It Should Shape Up

March 16, 2003|Mike Terry | Times Staff Writer

Connecticut is not an automatic choice to win a second consecutive championship. But the Huskies are still solid favorites.

AUTOMATIC BIDS (31)

*--* School Conference Rec Comment BOSTON U America East 16-14 First team to beat its top two tournament seeds DUKE Atlantic Coast 31-1 First ACC team to record three straight 30-win seasons GEORGIA STATE Atlantic Sun 20-10 Panthers win third straight conference title GEO. WASHINGTON Atlantic 10 24-6 Irvine's Cathy Joens was the conference player of the year PURDUE Big Ten 26-5 The Boilermakers are a legit top 10 team TEXAS Big 12 25-5 Longhorns ready to add another NCAA title WEBER STATE Big Sky 21-8 Wildcats also won regular-season title VILLANOVA Big East 25-5 Streak-busters have purists' respect LIBERTY Big South 26-3 Last defeat was Dec. 14 to Virginia Tech UC SANTA BARBARA Big West 26-4 Can win more than one game this time OLD DOMINION Colonial 21-10 ODU has won all 12 CAA tournaments TEXAS CHRISTIAN Conference USA 19-13 Upset Cincinnati in the conference tournament final WIS. GREEN BAY Horizon 27-3 Had regular-season wins over Ohio State, Texas Christian HARVARD Ivy 22-4 Their losses are by an average of 35.5 points MANHATTAN Metro Atlantic 20-9 First conference title since 1996 WESTERN MICHIGAN Mid-American 20-11 First 20-win season since 1977-78 VALPARAISO Mid-Continent 18-12 Its first NCAA tournament bid HAMPTON Mid-Eastern Atl 23-8 5-5 guard LaShondra Dixon had 11 steals in a game SW MISSOURI ST Missouri Valley 18-12 Kari Koch first freshman tournament MVP NEW MEXICO Mountain West 22-8 Could host sub regional and Midwest Regional ST. FRANCIS (PA.) Northeast 23-7 Has won 21 consecutive NEC tournament games AUSTIN PEAY Ohio Valley 27-9 Got a hometown parade before the NCAA tournament STANFORD Pac-10 26-4 Cardinal can play at home until the Final Four HOLY CROSS Patriot 24-7 Best of its league LOUISIANA ST Southeastern 27-3 Deserves a No. 1 seeding CHATTANOOGA Southern 26-4 First team to win three straight conference tournaments SW TEXAS Southland 18-13 Has won nine of last 10 games ALABAMA ST Southwestern 20-10 Also making its NCAA debut W. KENTUCKY Sun Belt 22-8 Last NCAA final was in 1992 PEPPERDINE West Coast 22-7 Needs to win a tournament game LOUISIANA TECH WAC 29-2 Lady Techsters now have longest win streak (27) AT-LARGE BIDS (33) ARIZONA Pac-10 22-8 Krista Warren had a strong Pac-10 tournament ARKANSAS SEC 21-10 Went to 1998 Final Four as a ninth seed BOSTON COLLEGE Big East 20-8 Surprised by Virginia Tech in conference tournament CENTRAL FLORIDA Atlantic Sun 19-11 One of the better bubble bids CHARLOTTE Conference USA 21-8 Won its first C-USA regular-season title COLORADO Big 12 22-7 Toughened by rugged conference schedule COLORADO STATE Mountain West 18-12 Wins over New Mexico, Xavier help Rams' bid CONNECTICUT Big East 31-1 Villanova loss killed Huskies' season. Yeah, right DePAUL Conference USA 22-9 Looked flat in semifinal loss to Cincinnati GEORGIA SEC 19-9 Riding strong conference's coattails GEORGIA TECH ACC 20-10 Went 9-9 after 11-1 start ILLINOIS Big Ten 17-11 Just wishin' and hopin' KANSAS STATE Big 12 28-3 Nicole Ohlde-Kendra Wecker: a dynamic duo MAINE America East 25-5 As deserving as any mid-major team MINNESOTA Big Ten 23-5 11-1 in nonconference games MISSISSIPPI STATE SEC 23-7 LaToya Thomas (25.6) is the nation's top senior NORTH CAROLINA ACC 27-5 Three of its five losses are to Duke NOTRE DAME Big East 19-10 Not one of the Irish's better years OHIO STATE Big Ten 21-9 Big Ten tournament runner-up OKLAHOMA Big 12 19-12 See Georgia PENN STATE Big 10 24-8 Regular-season conference champion RUTGERS Big East 20-7 Comes in on a two-game losing streak ST. JOSEPH'S Atlantic 10 18-10 On same bubble with Illinois SIENA MAAC 24-7 Should be in despite losing conference title game SOUTH CAROLINA SEC 22-7 Jocelyn Penn (24.6) has had a big senior year TENNESSEE SEC 27-4 Losing SEC tournament won't help Lady Vols' confidence TEXAS TECH Big 12 26-5 Good enough to reach the Final Four UCLA Pac-10 18-11 The Bruins, Auburn or Michigan State should be in UTAH Mountain West 23-6 Berth could depend on conference's respect level VANDERBILT SEC 21-9 Played nation's second hardest schedule VIRGINIA TECH Big East 21-9 Ivea Kublina is first VT player on conference all-tournament team WASHINGTON Pac-10 22-7 Blowout loss to Arizona will hurt seeding XAVIER Atlantic 10 20-9 A 37 RPI has Musketeers in good shape

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NCAA TOURNAMENT DATES, SITES

FIRST AND SECOND ROUNDS

First Round...Saturday and Sunday

Second Round...Monday and Tuesday

Sites: Saturday and Monday games -- Coors Events & Conference Center, Boulder, Colo.; Stegeman Coliseum, Athens, Ga.; Constant Convocation Center, Norfolk, Va.; McArthur Court, Eugene, Ore.; Mackey Arena, West Lafayette, Ind.; University Arena, Albuquerque; Maples Pavilion, Stanford; Thompson-Boling Arena, Knoxville, Tenn. Sunday and Tuesday games--Shoemaker Center, Cincinnati; Harry A. Gampel Pavilion, Storrs, Conn.; Bramlage Coliseum, Manhattan, Kan.; Thomas Assembly Center, Ruston, La.; Reynolds Coliseum, Raleigh, N.C.; Lloyd Noble Center, Norman, Okla.; Bryce Jordan Center, University Park, Pa.; United Spirit Arena, Lubbock, Texas.

REGIONALS

East...March 30 and April 1, University of Dayton Arena, Dayton, Ohio

West...March 30 and April 1, Maples Pavilion, Stanford

Mideast...March 27 and 29, Thompson-Boling Arena, Knoxville, Tenn.

Midwest...March 27 and 29, University Arena, Albuquerque

FINAL FOUR

Site...Georgia Dome, Atlanta

Semifinals...April 6

Championship game...April 8

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