Posted by: kevinfortruth | April 1, 2013

Baylor Women’s basketball and Kim Mulkey – lived by the sword and died by the sword


All year long Baylor ladies have been playing an excessively rough “street ball” kind of basketball. 

For those who don’t know one of the basic tenets of street ball, the cardinal rule is, “No blood, no foul.”

Baylor’s posts and guards have been getting away with rough play all year while painting Griner as a victim.  They have used every dirty trick in the book to make steals, rebounds, and forcing turnovers.

Sure, Griner got roughed up last night but she has dished it out her entire career – as well as last night.  The punch heard ‘round the world happened over 3 years ago but since then Griner has, on numerous occasions, thrown down opponents and gotten away with it most of the time. 

All she had to do last night was change her game – she could have moved out to a high post and Louisville would have reduced the triple coverage down to double coverage.  Griner chose not to do that however because she has no outside game.  Griner has only attempted one 3-point shot all year (and missed it), which supports my comment that she has no outside game.

She seldom went out to contest Louisville’s 3-point shooters. Why?  Baylor, as a whole, appears to have this air of superiority – and as a result they thought they had no need to alter their game to win.

Also, in the dying seconds, Baylor could have thrown a pass the length of the court – Sims is more than capable of tossing it, instead, Sims dribbled the length of the court and threw a ridiculous desperation shot.

Why din’t Griner and Sims do what Hurley and Laettner did for Duke against Kentucky with little time remaining on the clock?  Why?  Because Griner is not EDD (Elena Della Donne.)  Griner has NO outside shot – she only has a high shooting percentage because she forces defenders backwards until she ends up with easy layups.

For those who did not see or hear about Bobby Hurley and Christian Laettner – Duke guard Hurley threw a long inbounds pass to Laettner, a 6’11” forward, who was positioned near the free throw line and Laettner turned and made a jump shot to win the game for Duke.  Given Griner’s height and wingspan and Sims strength, they could have replicated that famous Duke play.

Considering the clock would not have started until a player touched the ball, Griner could have opted to turn and take

3 – 4 steps and made one of her easy layups or even one of her bland dunks, which would have ignited the crowd and given Baylor the victory. 

Also, Kim Mulkey should be fined heavily for her after game comments.  Her crybaby antics looked ridiculous as well as quite unprofessional – especially when she kept trying to rip off her jacket.  She reminded me of coach Bill Fennelly of Iowa State after he became irate when Griner threw down Chelsea Poppens, resulting in Fennelly ripping off his jacket in protest. 

Iowa State Coach Fennelly got called for a technical when he protested a call when playing against Baylor and coach Geno Auriemma got a technical for protesting a call in a UCONN game, also against Baylor and Jeff Walz got a technical called against him during the Baylor game last night.  So, why is it that Kim did not get called for a technical when she flipped out and ranted up and down the sidelines screaming and trying to rip off her jacket in protest?  Is it a case of double standards for women’s basketball when men coach a women’s basketball team?  It appears that way to me.

I believe women’s college basketball is doing whatever it can to start a dynasty other than UCONN and Tennessee and they are turning a blind eye to the antics of the Baylor Women and their colorful, yet constantly complaining head coach.  Coach Mulkey cries every time anyone on her team gets touched.

She complained about the rough play but three Louisville players got fouled out, while her players played rough the entire game.  Please do not get me wrong, the three Louisville players deserved each and every foul assessed but at the same time Mulkey’s  “street scrappers” got a free pass for most of the game.

Griner slapped a defender across the face – a slap that was worthy of a technical but it either wasn’t seen at the time it occurred – or worse yet it was overlooked.  When Louisville’s coach asked for it to be looked at, it was not called as being a flagrant foul because it did not include an elbow – so, it appears that you can slap all you want without getting a technical.

Sims taunted Schimmel and both of them got called for T’s even though Sims was the instigator who turned to face Schimmel instead of going down the court.  It is as though Baylor can do no wrong. 

Baylor could not defend the 3′s – the few times they attempted to they ended up fouling the shooter for 3 shots (twice I believe). 

Mulkey and her kids have had an “air of arrogance” all year – acting as if they could get away with extremely rough play and not be penalized because they were anointed to win a second consecutive championship – earning dynasty status.

Maybe Kim should change her last name from Mulkey to Karma because Karma showed up last night and put Kim in her place.

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Responses

  1. Kevin,

    A couple of other thoughts:

    I totally agree with you that Mulkey’s whining (looks like crying too) on every call is visually painful to watch. I know she is trying to gain an “edge” with the refs but is that the best way to do it?? There are other coaches who do this too (Hatchell?) but I’m amazed they do not get T’d up for this. It would have been interesting to see the vote tally if the viewing audience could have voted on giving Mulkey a technical when she was stomping around trying to rip her jacket off…My guess is it would have garnered a 75% vote for the T.

    EDD – After watching the NCAA games and getting to see EDD a few times recently, I’m convinced that she is a solid #2 pick in the draft. I know Griner is going to be good, but have to say that Della Donne is a much better all around basketball player. We know she can shoot lights out but she displayed a lot of grit and toughness in these recent games. I also think she handles herself with a lot of class and will be a superstar in WNBA as she will not be double teamed at that level.

    Capt Pine

    • Welcome Capt; Good comments and observations – especially on EDD. Regarding Mulkey, my objection to her whinning and crying is that she does it all through the game. Hatchel and Geno and Walz and others raise hell in spurts – maybe 2 or 3 times that last 20 – 30 seconds each. Even when Iowa State’s coach ripped off his coat, it was over in less than a minute – then he sat and “played by the rules” for the rest of the game. Mulkey should have gotten a “T” for her extended antics.

      I think people have a fondness for EDD because of her relationship with her sister and her family – both given as reasons for her leaving during the night after two days at UCONN. Sure, some UCONN fans still resent her for leaving at all but in their hearts they wished her well.

      Griner, on the other hand, after the punch to Barncastle, drew a lot of ire from everyone except Baylor fans. No matter what Barncastle did, a roundhouse punch was not justified – the officials were in error for letting the pushing and shoving to escalate. That said, even though Griner is extremely talented and has accomplished so much, every time she takes down an opponent, like Dolson (twice) and Poppens (once) people consider her a bully.

      When Louisville kept boxing her in and roughhousing her, most viewers empathized with Griner but I felt she could have altered her game by playing the high post and that would have ended the triple team – because no team would bring three players out to the high post to guard anyone because that would have left the paint vulnerable and it would have allowed at least two players to shoot uncontested shots. Baylor lost the game – Louisville did not win the game. In addition, Mulkey is the reason for the loss. Mulkey could have benched Briner and Baylor could have gone man to man against Louisville and that would have limited the successful run of 3 pointers.

      I agree with you on EDD, she has a better overall game – she can defend, she can block, she can shoot from anywhere on the floor. Griner, on the other hand, can defend the paint and block and shoot reasonably close to the basket – but she does not have any form of an outside game.

      In 100 games with 10 seconds left, I would rather have EDD to make the last shot from truly anywhere on the court. All Griner has is her ability to force all opponents backwards so she can make a layup.

      If Diggins, EDD, and Griner were playing a game of horse, Griner would come in last. PERIOD. How EDD and Diggins would place, I do not know – maybe a tie – either way, it would be nice to see.

      Now, throw KML in that game of horse and it would be even more interesting.

  2. You obviously are totally ignoring or
    totally oblivious to all the smacking and
    hand fouling that was going on
    defensively by Louisville. Baylor made their
    Fouls and were called on them . Louis-
    ville made many more that weren’t
    called.
    The one foul , the ‘hand to the face’
    That player deserved to be thrown to the
    floor !! for all the fouling she was doing.
    Change the play tactic of the game -
    Perhaps may have made some difference .
    Big upset , yes. Alot of dirty play , I say
    Yes! To Baylor’r credit , they kept their
    cool. Perhaps a full blown flagrant knock
    down foul may have been the way to go .

    • Hi Jeannie; Thanks for your comments. It is obvious that we will never agree on this. You are adamant that all of Baylors fouls were called and I disagree. I have already stated that the game started quite physically and the refs called numerous fouls on Louisville – enough? probably not. that said, Baylor plays a rough game and they have done it all year.

      Baylor did not want to alter their game and Kim acknowledges she should have done that. Brittney could have shifted to be more outside and they would have reduced the triple teaming to probably a double team.

      Keep in mind that if she was triple teamed (as I believe she was) there were two Baylor players open all the time. Why didnt they do some outside shooting to free up the middle? Baylor depends on Griner to continuously push players back until she has a layup. She tends NOT to shoot from where she gets the ball – she needs to bully her way backwards – in some games she has thrown down defenders.

      She, like anyone else, has no right to punch, slap, or knock down anyone. You defend Griner like she is an Angel – she is not.

      The refs should have called an official time out – talked to all players and then resume play. Louisville ended up with 3 KEY players fouling out and that was fair. When griner slapped the girl in the face, I believe the refs intentionally overlooked it because of the frequent contact.

      Baylor plays street ball all the time. This game was unusual because Louisville overdid the physical game.

      Any coach or manager will tell you that if what you are doing is not working, then do something else. Baylor did not do that. Baylor has posts and guards that can shoot 3′s. If 3 people were guarding and roughing up Griner, then those expert shooters could have shot uncontested 3′s all night long.

      How is it that Louisville players wer open for the 16 three point shots? How? Because Baylor was sleeping on the job on defense.

      The smack talk was going on for quite a while.

      Also, if Kim Mulkey wasnt crying all game long all the time, maybe a ref would listen to her sometimes. She gripes and bitches everytime something does not go her way.

      Sure, Geno of UCONN does his Griping with officials but it is once or twice or three plays a game – Kim gripes all game long. She ripped off her jacket like a macho WWF manager and she did not get called with a “T”, but Iowa State’s coach got a “T” for doing it and so did Geno and so did a few other men coaches who coached against Baylor.

      Griner could have played more outside… Oh, no, she couldnt have because she has NO outside game.

      She has only attempted ONE, 1, o-n-e, uno 3 point shot all year long because she cannot shoot from outside. But her teammates can but did not do so.

      Lastly, you described one play as a “hand to the face”, I would call it a slap across the face. Did the defender deserve more – you betcha – but what she deserved is another foul being called. If you can, look at the Iowa State / Baylor championship game where Griner threw down Popens.

      Any time Griner gets rough with anyone, you might think she has the right to toss someone down and that is not the case. She threw down Dolson and Griner got a “T”, She again did it but they overlooked it because it would have resulted in an ejection.

      Griner and Dolson play each other tough and tight, but Dolson never threw down Griner. Griner wants all other centers and posts to cave to her backing up and pushing them all back and when someone stands up to her, her anger shows, as though, “The nerve of this tweep standing up to me.”

      Griner wont be able to get away with the crap she gets away with when she is in the WNBA. Players are older and bigger and they will contest her forceful ways.

      Also, other teams will shoot from outside successfully against Griner but Griner cannot return the favor because she has NO OUTSIDE GAME.

      In the pros, EDD will make 3-s all over the place when she plays against griner because EDD plays all over the court.

      • I did not see the game that BG slammed the player down . That does explain her composure In the midst of all of what appeared to me to be “in your face” overt obnoxious defense play . I agree when you talk about BG’s cockiness when she has made her dunk shots , and yes , her all that Attitude as she can walk down the court . I perhaps have not followed closely enough during regular season to see that kind of obnoxious ,in your face play go on unchecked . I’ve watched UCOnn play – hard, fast , physical , Stanford, NDame- Hard, fast , physical – and Skylar Diggins has her own little Drama Queen show going on when things don’t go the way she doesn’t like it.., Street ball – I need to go check That out and get back to u – it was Certainly something I missed in Previous games …

        Sent from my iPhone

        • Hi Michael; thanks for visiting and commenting. I agree, there are many teams that play hard, fast, and physical but there are other teams that take it to a more confrontational level – a level consisting of cheap shots, elbows, and initiating tossdowns that could result in serious injuries.

          Syracuse, Louisville, and Baylor are three teams that come to mind.

          I do not include Stanford or Notre Dame or UCONN or Duke in this category – mostly because these teams have very successful recruiting programs and as a result, they are deep on the bench and they have no need to play a rough game – their skills are such that they can score by playing a “cleaner” game – they don’t need to incorporate cheap tricks and roughness to win games.

          My concern with Baylor is that they have a team full of solid, natural talent and they have a center who dominates the game – yet they feel the need to play “street ball” to dominate opponents. Several of Baylor’s post players stand behind their opponents and wedge one of their knees between the legs of the offensive player to throw them off balance or to limit their ability to move freely. I have seen Baylor players position themselves in a way to blindside an opponent into being upended.

          Skylar is another story – you are so correct, she is a Drama Queen. She knows how to milk her charm and cuteness. Dln’t get me wrong, she is extremely talented and has had a very successful career at Notre Dame, but she knows how to work the sportscasters, announcers, and fans. Because she does play at a higher level, referees tend to allow her liberties other players are not given.

    • One last comment Jeannie – the NCAA and womens college basketball are partially to blame for the roughness in the past 2 – 3 years. They want more contact to attract tv viewers and to increase attendance. There are a handful of teams, such as Baylor, Louisville, Syracuse, Kentucky and a few others that play a closer game – lots of body contact – because if they get away with a handful of close rough checking they will pick off the ball and run for fast breaks.

      It makes the game more colorful. Unfortunately, this past year we have seen more ACL’s more fractures, more ankle and foot injuries and more key players out for the season or requiring surgery. Look at Oklahoma, Penn State, Maryland, Oklahoma – I dont mean average players getting injured – it is as though the rougher teams are targeting some stars to take them out of the game or the season and that is sad.

      LSU could barely have enough players to start a game and have one or two on the bench Duke lost their best player, so did Oklahoma and so did Maryland.

      Street ball needs to be left to the street.

  3. What do you mean by “her disease, however, might limit her career.”? Was it in reference to EDD or BG? Excellent articles read, even the knowledgeable commentors.

    • Hi Jacki; I apologize for not being more specific. I meant EDD and not Griner. I hope that EDD goes high but if she goes lower than third, it might be because teams fear another bout with Lymes disease that will keep her on the bench for a week or two or longer.

      Griner is good – no she is very good but her lack of outside game will limit her greatness in the WNBA but EDD, if she remains reasonably healthy will be a better overall player

      Good outside shooting in the WNBA will limit Griner’s value because there will be players who can shoot the lights out from outside. Only Louisville did that against Baylor and that was very unusual. Maya Moore and others shoot 3′s with regularity and that negates a big opposing center somewhat.

      • Thanks for the quick response. I haven’t read you blog before but I must say it is on point. I saw the end of the Baylor game and could not believe the amount of woofing going on. Walz had a game plan and Kim M. could not react. Thanks

        • I try to respond to all posts – especially to those who take time to leave some meaningful comments. As you will see if you look at other blogs here about other issues, politics, crime, Nancy Grace, and other topics, I encourage all positions. I only block when there are obscenities or threats or insults that go beyond the pale.
          I still cannot believe it that I gave credit to Bobby Hurley for throwing in the pass that led to Duke winning against Kentucky. Talk about drinking Kook Aid!

          Kevin

    • In Griner’s defense, because of her height and wingspan, many expect wonderful things from her – while at the same time, others resent her impact on the game because of her height.

      I think the officials could have done a little more early on to control the pack mentality Louisville used against Griner and Baylor – the fouls helped somewhat but even with 3 Louisville key players fouling out, they still hung on to win.

  4. Kevin,

    Lots of truth to this blog. I’ve always liked Mulkey and think she is a great coach but the constant whining and sideline antics are too much.

    Regarding the Baylor players, when your best player is sending tweets out at halftime about needing to get some more dunks, it is very hard to root for her or this team. Where is Mulkey when this is going on. The comment by Griner probably made in jest about the only team that can beat us is Miami (Heat) really came back to bite her.

    This team does play rough and as you said you reap what you sew. Have to give the L’Ville team and Coach Walz lots of credit for sticking with their game plan and not backing down from Baylor.

    I think this loss effects Griner’s legacy a bit and not winning the 2nd NC will keep her from being considered the top player in WCBB historically.

    Capt Pine

    • Hi Capt; thanks for visiting and taking the time to write such a detailed comment. I am glad someone else has input on Mulkey. Personally I think she spends too much time as a fashion statement – her hair, her glitzy outfits. Nothing wrong with looking nice but when it detracts from the sport at hand, then you have your priorities in the wrong order.

      I, like you, think the Miami Heat comment was over the top – especially considering that Stanford beat them this year. Are the collective memories at Baylor really that short?

      Dont get me wrong, Griner is an excellent player – but a lot of it is because of her utilizing her height to her advantage – IMHO, she has “absolutely no game” beyond 15 feet. Sure, she has gone out at times and blocked shots but she has only attempted one 3 pointer all year.

      EDD has not accomplished statistically as much as Griner, but she is better overall as a player. Her disease, however, might limit her career.

      Thanks again for visiting.

  5. Nice blog; I think in the end Mulkey got used to not coaching because her two big talents always did the job for her. I think Baylor lost this game for one reason, they got out-coached, as Mulkey didn’t make any adjustments. BTW, It wasn’t Bobby Hurley who threw that pass, it was Grant Hill.

    • Hi Chris; Thanks for stopping by. WOW, I cannot believe I blew it on the passer. I have been watching ESPN shows on Duke and the rivalry between Hurley and Laettner and I connected dots that were not there – sorry about that. Thanks for the wake up call – I need to double-check my “facts” better before tying two events together again. Really, thanks…


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