Sunday, June 16, 2024

Final 8 of 298 Great VABG Teams Set to Debut in All-Time East, South, Midwest and West Women's Games

Since debuting the Value Add Basketball Game in 2019, we have played games involving 290 of the 298 great teams dating back to the 1943 Wyoming Men's team, when Ken Sailors invented the jump shot, to take the title, up to the 2024 Iowa Women's team with Caitlin Clark breaking Pistol Pete Maravich's all-time scoring record.

The final eight teams set to debut their games next are Colorado State, Kentucky, LSU, Maryland, Michigan State, NC State, Oklahoma, Rutgers, Stanford, and Texas Tech.

Some 21st-century teams have played more than half a dozen games, but our goal this past season was to play at least one game with each team in order to scrutinize for any missing players or suggested substitutions. We now have just one game left for each of the four all-time regional women's championships. In setting up for each of these games, we finalized all player cards after catching one mistake for the Kentucky 2013 team and making a few minor tweaks.

Final 4 Debut Games

South Bracket - 10-seed Kentucky 2013

v 7-seed LSU 2005

The only significant mistake we discovered among these final eight teams was that a card was not generated for Kentucky's All-American and SEC Player of the Year, A'dia Mathies.. You can now view and print page 23 of the 1st google doc for the great women's teams under West Region's 7-seed LSU team and page 16 for their SEC rival and 10-seed Kentucky. Alternatively, you can print the images below or scroll down for the final Midwest, East, and South debut games.

LSU did not have changes to their cards, so this game is set.

Links to key players in this game include Kentucky's Mathies, Jennifer O'Neill and DeNesha Stallworth, and for LSU Temeka JohnsonScholanda DorrellSeimone AugustusSylvia Fowles and Crystal White.

West Bracket - 10-seed Colorado St. 1999

v 7-seed Stanford 2012

As mentioned in our ODU blog on the last game, the end of the century marked the decline of Mid-Major dominant teams, as big programs led by Tennessee, UConn, and later Baylor and South Carolina took over. If this trend had not occurred, Colorado State might have emerged as one of the dominant Mid-Majors national champ instead of the Pac-12 Power Conference Stanford, who eventually became dominant in the West.

The only change we made to these cards was moving Colorado State's Katie Cronin from 3-SF to 5-C to enhance her rebounding abilities (OReb 1-4, DReb 1-5) in the key rebounding spot, with Heather Haanen moving to small forward. The rebounding chart indicates that the center has 3 rolls to grab, 2 rolls each for the forwards (SF and PF), and just 1 roll each for the guards (SG and PG), emphasizing the need for stronger rebounding ranges at center and forward.

There were no changes to the dominant Stanford team led by Nnemkadi Ogwumike and Chiney Ogwumike as well as Amber Orrange. In addition to Cronin inside, Colorado State features point guard Becky Hammon.

East Bracket - 9-seed NC State 2024v 8-seed Maryland 2006

There were no changes to the cards for either Maryland or NC State teams already in the system. Maryland's lineup includes Kristi ToliverShay DoronMarissa ColemanCrystal Langhorne and Laura Harper, while the NC State women joined the 2024 NC State men's team as the Cinderella shocker and we will see which of their current players emerge next year from among Aziaha JamesSaniya RiversMadison HayesMimi Collins and River Baldwin.

Midwest Bracket - Rutgers 2005 
v Michigan State. 2005

The two teams did not actually play in 2005, as Rutgers was still in the Big East and would later join the Big Ten. Michigan State featured  Lindsay BowenKristin HaynieLiz Shimek and Courtney Davidson.  Rutgers will counter with Matee AjavonCappie Pondexter, and off the bench at the time Essence Carson. We had not changed any cards or rotations for either team.

We originally produced the Rutgers 2007 team, when Carson was Big East defensive player of the year. However, we later decided to include the teams of our top 40 college players of all time, so subbed in the 2005 team since.we rank Pondexter as the 36th greatest college player of all time. While we use the 2005 squad in our games,.we did leave the 2007 cards for any who prefer to use it.

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