March 3, 2022 

Daily Briefing — Mar. 3, 2022: Can’t Blair to see Gary go

Check on your people, plus

Happy Thursday — the workweek’s almost passed! Welcome to The Next’s Daily Briefing, featuring the W Roundup daily Watch List and Yesterday’s Recap! Day 113 of college basketball is here, following the start of conference tournaments! It was a busy day, between the closing of the illustrious career of Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair, Duke and Pitt challenging the notion of high-level basketball, and some landmark individual performances from Vanderbilt and Coastal Carolina.

But first: the sports world felt an immeasurable loss yesterday, as Stanford released that Katie Meyer passed away. Meyer was the Cardinal women’s soccer goalie, most famous for her retaliatory trash talk in Stanford’s 2019 Final Four win over rival UCLA (Meyer said after that the Bruins had denigrated her in the days beforehand) and her swagger in its penalty-shootout championship win over North Carolina. She interned at Just Women’s Sports, and was one of the Cardinal women’s basketball team’s strongest supporters. I had the pleasure of covering her play in-person this past fall.

As OL Reign striker Bethany Balcer perfectly described, checking in with the people in your life is always important, but it’s not a simple panacea. Creating an environment where people are able to comfortably express themselves, where feeling like shit is something openly expressed more often, is at least as important. Everyone, but especially athletes, are too often discouraged from vulnerability. We all feel like shit at least some of the time; pretending otherwise only discourages others from being vulnerable.

W Roundup

Free agency

  • Sydney Colson: Signed a training-camp deal with Las Vegas. If you don’t know who that is, go follow her on Twitter. You can thank me later.

Dallas: Released Imani McGee-Stafford, whose rights they had retained since March 2020 on account of her completing law school.

Indiana: Released wing Aaliyah Wilson. The 2021 No. 11 pick is the third first-round pick cut from their rookie contract by the Fever in the past eight months.

Visit our offseason trackers page to see all the other free agent moves and how they affect team’s caps, other front-office changes, and more — in neat, colorful fashion!


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Watch List, Thursday, Mar. 3

(All times in Eastern)

Must-watch

None

Good games

Northwestern v. Minnesota, 6:30 p.m., BTN

Wazzu v. Utah, 11:30 p.m., Pac-12 Network

Also watchable

Boston College v. Florida State, 2 p.m., ACC Network

Sickos games

Miami v. Duke, 6 p.m., ACC Network Extra

Pac-12 or Big 10 on national television (or national streaming)

Michigan State v. Purdue, 11:30 a.m., BTN

#14 Indiana v. Rutgers, 1:30 p.m., BTN

Nebraska v. Illinois, 8:30 p.m., BTN

Wednesday, Mar. 2 recap

#9 Texas, RV* Kansas: The Longhorns beat the Jayhawks 70-60. Kansas trailed by only one point as late as 3:38 in the fourth quarter.

#19 Oklahoma: 79-76 win over Oklahoma State. The Cowgirls led as late as 5:12 in the fourth quarter. Combo guard Taylor Robertson had her second-career double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds.

(All rankings below reflect tournament seeding)

ACC tournament

#10 Duke beat #15 Pitt, 55-52. The game was, as Friend Of The Next’s Lindsay Gibbs put it, “where offense ha[d] come to die.”

#11 Wake Forest beat #14 Virginia, 61-53.

#13 Clemson beat #12 Syracuse, 88-69. Tiger point guard Delicia Washington led with 33 points.

Big Ten tournament

#13 Rutgers beat #12 Penn State, 75-50.

#14 Illinois beat #11 Wisconsin, 75-66.

Pac-12 tournament

#5 Colorado beat #12 Washington, 64-52.

#6 Utah beat #11 Cal, 66-60.

#7 UCLA beat #10 USC, 73-60.

#8 Oregon State beat #9 Arizona State, 59-54.

SEC tournament

#11 Alabama beat #14 Auburn, 75-68.

#13 Vanderbilt beat #12 Texas A&M, 85-69. And just like that, somehow, Aggie head coach Gary Blair’s wonderful career comes to an end. Commodore point guard Jordyn Cambridge recorded the program’s first-ever triple-double, with 13 points (6-11 FG), 15 rebounds (six offensive), and 10 assists, plus four steals against seven turnovers.

A10 tournament

#12 George Washington beat #13 St. Bonaventure, 54-49.

#14 George Mason beat #11 Saint Louis, 65-50. As our A-10 reporter Natalie Heavren noted, this is the first time a 14-seed has won a game in the A-10 tournament.

Sun Belt tournament

#9 Coastal Carolina beat #8 Arkansas State, 91-76. Chanticleer big wing Aja Blount led all scorers Wednesday with a career-high 41 points on 14-for-18 from the field (4-5 3pt.) and 9-for-12 from the line — that’s an absurd true-shooting mark of 88.1% — plus eight rebounds (three offensive) and four assists against four turnovers without sitting.

*Receiving Votes

Written by Em Adler

Em Adler (she/they) covers the Seattle Storm and college basketball for The Next, while also writing for The Chronicle, Duke's independent student paper

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