It goes without saying in and around Storrs, but we'll do it anyway, for emphasis: the expectations for your typical Geno Auriemma team is a national title. Every year. Last season, the Huskies fell short, losing to Notre Dame in the Final Four.
But that was six months ago. UConn has reloaded with one of the best recruiting classes in the country, and point guard and sharpshooter Caroline Doty returns after missing 2010-11 with a knee injury.
In case you're still not convinced, three Huskies made their way onto the Wooden Award preseason list. The only other team with at least three players? Notre Dame, who beat UConn in the Final Four before losing to Texas A&M in finals.
Senior Tiffany Hayes and sophomores Bria Hartley and Stefanie Dolson represent the Huskies on the 30-person list.
The Fighting Irish's three players include Skylar Diggins, Natalie Novosel and Devereaux Peters.
Details via the Associated Press:
The Big East led all conferences with nine selections, followed by the Atlantic Coast Conference with six, the Big 12 with four, the Southeastern Conference and Big 10 with three, and the Pac-12 and Colonial Athletic Association with two, and the Atlantic 10 with one.
Tennessee (Shekinna Stricklin, Glory Johnson), Baylor (Britney Griner, Odyssey Sims), Maryland (Lynetta Kizer, Alyssa Thomas), Ohio State (Samantha Prahalis, Alex Bentley), Miami (Shenise Johnson, Riquna Williams) and Stanford (Nnemkadi Ogwumike, Chiney Ogwumike) all had two players named on the list released Monday.
The women’s Wooden Award will be presented at the Los Angeles Athletic Club on April 6. More importantly for Auriemma and his players: the Final Four will be played in Denver this season, and the national championship game is on April 3.