The term “dynasty” gets appointed to only the greatest of the greats in the sports world, and after Monday’s 82-51 win over Syracuse for their fourth consecutive National Championship, the UConn women’s basketball program has done more than just solidify its place in the history books as a dynasty.
Champs again! UConn becomes the 1st team in women’s Division I history to win 4 consecutive National Titles. pic.twitter.com/9F4i0sLcbn
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) April 6, 2016
When you hear the term “dynasty” in the context of sports, you normally think of Tiger Woods from 1997-2008 (not the cheating/injured Tiger of today), the Celtics of the 50’s/60’s (11 Championships in 13 seasons), the Patriots of the early 2000’s (three Super Bowls in four seasons), and the UCLA Bruins of the 60’s/70’s (10 championships in 12 seasons). In 2016, you now think of UConn, and not the UConn men’s team that has won three National Championships in the last 15 seasons (’04, ’11, ’14). While the men’s basketball program in Storrs may be pretty special, it still does not compare to the school’s dominance on the court at the women’s level. Geno Auriemma’s Huskies have won four consecutive National Championships and 10 since the year 2000. No other school in college basketball has come anywhere near 10 National Championships in the last 16 years with both their men’s and women’s programs combined. The fact that UConn was able to win 10 titles with just one of their two basketball programs is incredible, and added to the UConn men’s titles, the University of Connecticut has won 13 of 32 total NCAA basketball championships (men’s and women’s combined) in the last 16 years.
Geno Auriemma and the UConn’s women’s basketball program have taken some heat during Auriemma’s tenure at the University of Connecticut as the school has turned into a national powerhouse in women’s collegiate basketball. Yes, you read that correctly, people actually hold it against Geno Auriemma for being very good at his job. It makes sense in a way because people always tend to hate those who are the best at something or are at the top of the food chain for such an extended period of time like UConn has been in women’s basketball. Every great sports dynasty has its haters, but the UConn women have seen a different type of hate that Bill Russell’s Celtics, Belichick’s Patriots, the Chicago Blackhawks of today, and John Wooden’s UCLA Bruins never did, and that is being labeled as “bad for the sport.” To actually consider what Geno Auriemma and this basketball program have done over the last decade and a half to be “wrong,” is insane! Isn’t it a part of any person’s goal to do the best they possibly can at their job? Isn’t it also part of every athlete’s dream to try to go and play at a place that will allow you to compete your a** off and win as much as you possibly can? Anybody who has a problem with coaches and players who are trying to dominate their craft to the best of their abilities is the type of person who can’t stand seeing others succeed at something they cannot, also known as “jealousy.”
If this were any other sport (current example being the New England Patriots), people would certainly still hate UConn due to the fact that they win or are in the hunt to win every year. But, nobody would be calling the Lady Huskies “bad for the sport.” Can you imagine an NFL without the New England Patriots? There would be nobody for fans and the media to label as the league’s villains or the cheaters. The majority of football fans may hate the Patriots, but has anybody ever called them “bad for the sport?” Maybe a few, but generally, the Patriots are not known as being “bad for the sport,” rather, being known as the “lying a**holes.” The Patriots create ratings for games and discussions on sports talk radio/TV, and that may be the main difference between the hate being dished UConn’s way and the hate being dished to other great sports dynasties. Women’s college basketball simply does not generate the ratings and discussions that other major sports do. It’s not because there is anything wrong with the sport, but the majority of the American public just isn’t as interested in women’s college hoops as they are with say the NFL, NBA, and NCAA men’s basketball. When people see a team dominate a sport that does not get all that much attention the way that UConn has dominated women’s college basketball over the last decade and a half, they get sick of the same headlines of: “UConn Rolls ________ To Capture Another National Championship.” If more people actually paid attention to the sport and understood all the hard work that went into these championship runs by UConn, they wouldn’t write off the Huskies as being “bad for women’s college basketball.” Instead, they would praise UConn the same way they would praise the Duke Blue Devils, North Carolina Tar Heels, and Michigan State Spartans for their deep tournament runs at the men’s level in recent years. The fact that people are labeling UConn as being “bad for their sport” simply because they do not follow the sport and, therefore, know nothing about women’s college hoops, is completely absurd. If you are going to hate a team or consider what they are doing “bad for the sport,” you may want to have at least one other logical reason for your hatred towards them other than “they win too much.”
While it may seem unfair to label UConn as being “bad for women’s basketball,” it can honestly be considered an honor in a weird way. Has any other program ever dominated a sport so much that members of other schools and the media debated whether or not that team’s dominance was bad for that specific sport? Certainly from time to time, people have asked whether or not the dominance of the UCLA Bruins, New England Patriots, etc, was good for the NFL and NCAA men’s basketball. But, let’s just ask this simple question: how is a team repeating as National Champions for four consecutive years and going undefeated “bad for a sport.” Shouldn’t the media be praising UConn, Geno Auriemma and these players on their accomplishments rather than taking the chicken s*** way out and criticizing them for their success? That seems pretty weak. Having been labeled as “being bad for their sport” is something that may seem a bit harsh for UConn women’s basketball players, but right now, these women should just embrace the hate because their dominance is making their hating audience look like a bunch of whining jealousy-filled babies. That is a feat that no other great American sports dynasty has ever been able to do. Embrace the hate, UConn women. Embrace the hate and keep dominating. What a ride!
Iron Mike telling it how it is!
UConn may have won the title but Cinncinati is the real champ tonight pic.twitter.com/hsZ8OhAkTL
— Barstool Sports (@barstoolsports) April 6, 2016