December 28, 2022 

Locked on Women’s Basketball: NCAAW states draft: Who got the best teams?

Each panelist selected ten states and will get all of those states' NCAAW teams — with teams earning our panelists 1 point for making the NCAA Tournament

It’s time for another episode of the Locked on Women’s Basketball podcast. This episode features host Alex Simon of Bay Area News Group and Russell Steinberg of The Boardroom, also joining The Next‘s Em Adler and Isabel Rodrigues for some delightful holiday fun: the NCAAW States Draft.

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Each panelist selected ten states and will get all of those states’ NCAAW teams, with teams earning our panelists 1 point for making the NCAA Tournament and 1 point for each tourney win.

The panelist breaks down their NCAAW states Draft picks:

Russell Steinberg:

“I am going with the great state of California with my first pick and with it, I will get the Stanford Cardinal and the UCLA Bruins but also a bunch of Mid-Majors that have a chance to go to the tournament; you’d look at a conference like the Big West, which is almost entirely in California. So I’m pretty much guaranteed a point there. Stanford is a logical Final Four team, so I’m probably getting four, maybe more points there. UCLA is a team that could win multiple games in the tournament. And then you have some teams on the bubble that maybe get a bid or make some noise talking about someone like USC, so that’s my pick.”

Isabel Rodrigues:

“I had two states tied for second after California. And I was between Indiana and Iowa. And I think for me, I’m going to lean more toward Indiana for my first pick. Not just because of Indiana but also because of Notre Dame. And also, I’ve enjoyed what I’ve seen from Butler so far. So I feel like they could be a good sneaking inside. So we’ll see.”

Em Adler :

“A level of preparation was knowing that I did not have the first overall pick. And my spreadsheet says I will go with the guaranteed points here. And I’m taking the easy pick up North Carolina. North Carolina is a very easy pick that effectively guarantees you at least five points; basically, at least five points plus a bunch of NCAA tournament wins. We have two Top 10 teams in UNC and NC State. Duke is, at this point, close to a lock to the Tournament of some sort. And almost certainly, the winner of the Big South will come from the state of North Carolina as well. I’m going to take some easy points from the great state of North Carolina.”

Alex Simon:

“So I had all three of those seems very high on my board and was considering all three of those states very heavily. So I’m gonna have two picks here. I am going to first take Iowa because they are a team with two Top 10 level teams. I know they haven’t played like it so far. But that they’re also with Iowa, you do get Drake, who has looked very good already in their nonconference this season should be a tournament team is a Mid-Major that I like to maybe even sneak a win off in that tournament.

So Em, when you said you’re going with the guaranteed points, I thought you were gonna say a different Carolina. I’m going to take them to go for the top level because, as Russell pointed out, if the second-best state gets you nine points. Well, there’s one school that seems like the closest thing to a lock to get you at least six and that’s South Carolina. So I will take South Carolina, the Gamecocks. And if they repeat U.S. national champion, that’s about as close to seven, even if the rest of the state maybe doesn’t get me anything of note whatsoever.”

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Here at The Next, in addition to the 24/7/365 written content our staff provides, we also host the daily Locked On Women’s Basketball podcast. Join us Monday through Saturday each week as we discuss all things WNBA, collegiate basketball, basketball history and much more. Listen wherever you find podcasts or watch on YouTube.

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Written by The Next

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