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NCAA Championship Game 2012: Why Baylor Bears Are More Than Just Brittney Griner

DENVER, CO - APRIL 01:  Players from the Baylor Bears celebrate on the bench in the second half against the Stanford Cardinal during the National Semifinal game of the 2012 NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Championship at Pepsi Center on April 1, 2012 in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
Eric BallFeatured ColumnistApril 3, 2012

The Baylor Bears are historically one of the best teams of all-time, thanks, in large part, to the masterful Brittney Griner.

But that’s not the only reason they went 40-0 and won the national championship.

Griner is deserving of a lot of the attention she is receiving, but that doesn’t mean that the other ladies should get shutout from the cameras.

Ever heard of Odyssey Sims?

The play-making point guard has averaged 14.7 points, 4.35 assists and an incredible 2.9 steals per game this season. She is the catalyst for ensuring the offense is running smoothly and is essentially the floor general of the team.

How do you think Griner gets the ball in such favorable parts of the paint?

Without Sims, it’s hard to imagine the Bears being where they currently are offensively.

DENVER, CO - APRIL 01:  Destiny Williams #10 of the Baylor Bears controls a rebound in the first half against the Stanford Cardinal during the National Semifinal game of the 2012 NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Championship at Pepsi Center on April 1,
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Or how about Destiny Williams, the junior power forward and rebounding machine who's pulling down 9.2 a game—only 0.2 less than Griner.

Toss in 10.1 points with a 54 percent shooting clip and she is the one that takes some of the pressure off Griner. Williams is the one that helps keep the double and triple teams down to a minimum.

Then there’s reserve guard Terran Condrey.

Codrey had only scored in double figures twice during the season, but was inserted into the lineup to spark the team in the Final Four against No. 2 Stanford. She ended up pouring in a team-high 13 points and completely turned the game around.

The Cardinals were slowing down the tempo to a snail’s pace, and it took the speed and quickness of Condrey to change things.

Griner wasn’t the answer.

Toss in the masterful coaching job by Kim Mulkey and the talents of Kimetria Hayden and Brooklyn Pope to complete this incredible collection of talent.

This is one of the greatest women’s teams in the history of the sport, and it’s not just because of one player.

Plenty of praise deserves to be sent in the direction of Griner for this historic season, but make sure to leave some for her teammates and coach as well.

This is much more than a one-woman show. 


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