There’s a lot going on in the world this Sunday that requires our undivided attention — specifically, the NFL Pro Bowl and the 65th Annual Grammy Awards immediately come to mind.
But if you want some entertainment before the aforementioned events, you’ll want to get into your women’s basketball bag. Beginning at 12:00 pm ET, No. 5 UConn hosts No. 1 South Carolina in what should be the sport’s biggest game of the day.
To be fair, Sunday’s whole slate of women’s college basketball games packs high-profile matchups, including Duke-Notre Dame, Ohio State-Maryland and North Carolina-Louisville. But the 2022 National Championship Game rematch between the Gamecocks and Huskies is certainly the most anticipated.
Sunday’s sold out game vs. #1 South Carolina is a WHITE OUT!
If you’re coming to the game, wear WHITE ⚪️ pic.twitter.com/eZQIKkH6y7
— UConn Women’s Basketball (@UConnWBB) February 3, 2023
Both teams enter Sunday’s contest holding noteworthy streaks. UConn hasn’t lost a home game in nearly a year, which puts their current streak of home wins at 16 (11-0 this season). Meanwhile, South Carolina has yet to taste defeat this season. In fact, the Gamecocks haven’t lost a game of any type since March 6, 2022.
So, we should expect a tremendous battle on Sunday, right? Right.
Even with UConn being dealt a bad hand with injuries this year — Azzi Fudd has only appeared in nine games (knee), and Paige Bueckers hasn’t played in any games this season (ACL) —the team is now up to 14 wins in a row and has a record of 21-2. This should be considered one of Geno Auriemma’s great coaching jobs.
The Huskies’ streak and ability to play through adversity will be tested on Sunday, though, against the defending national champions. Whichever test has been thrown at Dawn Staley’s group, they’ve passed. Most notably, their big win at Stanford. As the Gamecocks go on the road for another top-5 showdown, they’ll need to lean on their veteran experience to overcome a hostile environment.
There’s something worth paying attention to in this one, which is the classic offense vs. defense battle.
Led by Aaliyah Edwards and Nika Muhl, UConn might have the most efficient offense in the country. The Huskies have the best field goal percentage (52.0), the second-best 3-point percentage (40.3), are third in assists (20.4) and are one of just 13 teams putting up more than 80.0 points per game on the season. On the other hand, South Carolina has the sport’s best defense. It leads the nation in holding opponents to the fewest points per game (47.0) and the Gamecocks average an NCAAW-best 9.9 blocks per game behind the rim presence of Aliyah Boston and Kamilla Cardoso.
So, when the two elite college basketball programs meet on Sunday for a 2022 National Championship Game rematch, there’s no telling how this one will turn out. If you think you know, be sure to head over to BetMGM to bet on either the home underdog Huskies (+4.5) or the favored, defending champion Gamecocks on the road (-4.5).
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