Baylor is six wins from becoming the first team to win 40 games in a season. It’s hardly a foregone conclusion this year that the Lady Bears will win the national championship.
Here’s one look at the 63 games and how they might pan out. It’s guaranteed to remain unblemished until at least Saturday’s opening-round game (seedings in parentheses, winners in uppercase):
CONNECTICUT (1) vs. Prairie View A&M (16) _ The Huskies looked really strong in the Big East tournament, the Lady Panthers won’t provide much of a test in the opener.
PRINCETON (9) vs. Kansas State (8) _ What a week for the Tigers. They earned the Ivy League’s first Top 25 ranking and the conference’s highest seed ever. Junior guard Niveen Rasheed will cap it off by helping them win their first NCAA game.
LSU (5) vs. San Diego State (12) _ LSU coach Nikki Caldwell welcomed a new addition to the Tigers family by giving birth to a baby girl on March 6. Staying at home for the first two rounds is one less headache for the new mom.
PENN STATE (4) vs. UTEP (13) _ The Nittany Lions had a great regular season winning the Big Ten conference. Maggie Lucas and Alex Bentley are a really talented backcourt.
GONZAGA (11) vs. Rutgers (6) _ Getting to play on their home court should be enough to help the Zags pull the upset of Rutgers.
MIAMI (3) vs. Idaho State (14) _ Having good guards will help you advance in the NCAA tournament and the Hurricanes have a great pair in Shenise Johnson and Riquna Williams.
IOWA STATE (10) vs. Green Bay (7) _ Green Bay coach Matt Bollant felt his team was underseeded with just one loss on the season. Having to play in Ames, Iowa, will make star Julie Wojta’s NCAA trip a short one.
KENTUCKY (2) vs. McNeese State (15) _ The Wildcats have been a little off their game the last few weeks. They should be able to right themselves against the Cowgirls.
CONNECTICUT (1) vs. Princeton (9) _ The Tigers’ run will come to an end against the Huskies after a competitive first half. Stefanie Dolson and Kiah Stokes will prove to be too much inside for Princeton to handle.
PENN STATE (4) vs. LSU (5) _ The Nittany Lions fell just short of making it to the regional last year losing at home to DePaul. They will get through this year.