2012 NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament Bracket
|March 13, 2012||Posted by Dave Kingston under NCAA Basketball, NCAA News & Info, Sports Schedules|
Denver’s Pepsi Center will play host to the 2012 NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament Final Four with the title game set for April 3rd. The 64-team field was announced Monday night, with the top four seeds being undefeated and top-ranked Baylor, Notre Dame, Connecticut and Stanford. First-round games begin on Saturday, March 17th.
The Baylor Lady Bears, led by All-American Brittany Griner, are nearly an overwhelming favorite to capture their second overall title, and, with six victories would finish at 40-0, which would set a new record for an undefeated champion, both men’s and women’s. Currently, the record of 39-0 is shared by Connecticut (on three occasions), and Tennessee (once). Griner is averaging 23.3 ppg, 9.4 rpg and a nation-leading 5.1 blocks per game, forcing opponents to think twice about taking the ball into the paint. Baylor has completely dominated all season, winning by an average margin of 27 points, including 8 wins over teams ranked in the Top 25.
Interestingly, Baylor’s toughest test could come from within their own bracket, with #2 seed Tennessee and #3 seed Delaware both capable of pulling the upset. The Lady Vols, led by legendary coach Pat Summitt and her eight national championships, and Delaware, with All-American Elena Delle Donne, the nation’s leading scorer (27.5 ppg), are formidable foes.
The SEC and Big East Conferences each placed eight schools in the 64-team field, followed by the Big Ten and Big 12 with seven apiece. Other schools that could possibly make deep runs include Maryland, Duke, Kentucky, St. John’s, Purdue, Miami and Georgia.
The NCAA Women’s Division 1 Basketball Tournament began in 1982, and just once, in 1989, have the four top seeds advanced to the Final Four. The lowest seed to win the championship occurred in 1994, when North Carolina, a #3 seed, defeated Louisiana Tech in the championship game. Tennessee (1996-97-98) and Connecticut (2002-03-04) are the only schools to win three consecutive titles.