Womhoops Guru

Mel Greenberg covered college and professional women’s basketball for the Philadelphia Inquirer, where he worked for 40 plus years. Greenberg pioneered national coverage of the game, including the original Top 25 women's college poll. His knowledge has earned him nicknames such as "The Guru" and "The Godfather," as well as induction into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in 2007.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

NCAA Guru Notes: Cinderella Ahead

By Mel Greenberg

RALEIGH, N.C. _ ``Hello Harry, this is Pat.’’

Expect Tennessee coach Pat Summitt to get on the phone with her old friend, Villanova coach Harry Perretta, for some scouting help.

The Wildcats, who won just eight games this season, may not be in postseason play for the first time in a long while, but they were able to do something Ohio State or Middle Tennessee was unable to accomplish in the NCAA tournament.

Villanova beat Marist, which heads for its Sweet 16 debut, this weekend in the Dayton Regional.

Next up for the Red Foxes – Tennessee.

Negotiations Begin for Guru’s June Entourage in Knoxville

Note to the executives at the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame: The Guru has signed a prominent video speaker and has begun negotiations with a prospective escort for the induction ceremonies on June 8-9.

Public announcements will begin after the NCAA tournament has concluded.

Aditi Fights Adversity

As bad as the Guru had it in trying to get here around Friday’s ice storm, listen to this account of our esteemed colleague Aditi Kinkhabwala of the Bergen Record, who was sidelined Tuesday night back in North Jersey instead of at the Rutgers-Michigan State game in East Lansing because of difficulty from the weather.

The following email to us is reprinted with Aditi’s permission:

Well, I had the absolute day from hell. And I'm here in NJ, when I should be
in Michigan. So...

First they canceled Friday's 1:05pm flight at 8am, which was totally
foolhardy. There was nothing on the ground then! In any case, they pushed me
to the 8:25am Saturday morning which I KNEW was not happening.

My limo driver calls me at 4:20am Saturday to double check he has to get me
- and to tell me he doesn't know if he actually can. I spent 35 minutes on
American's call line, holding, then beg my way onto the 9:55am, figuring it
has a better chance of getting out. (The early flights they just cancel
instead of posptoning.)

We're on the road to LaGuardia at 7am. Once there, my 8:25am (which the
phone service insisted was leaving on time) is indeed canceled and we're
told that half of us on the 9:55 may not actually get on the plane b/c the
weather requires extra fuel and that means the plane must carry less weight
in passengers.

We wait, we wait, we wait, while they keep insisting we're taking off shortly.

Finally, around 1 pm, they load us on a bus to cross the
not-yet-plowed airport to another gate.

We climb aboard that plane and then wait for the tow truck to pull us 20 feet pass a mound of snow so we can start taxiing on our own to the runway.

In the 45 minutes we wait, those of us in the back start smelling something burning - the fuel tank had started to smoke. Maintenance comes, checks it out, and has all of us get off and wait on the bus (which has been re-called) while they examine the burning
closer. Then they decide we should just be driven back to the gate.

We wait at the gate, we wait, we wait and they tell us they're looking for
another plane.

They finally decide they're going to cancel us. And no one
will get out before Monday. And then they tell us they don't know where the
guy who unloaded our luggage took it.

I waited another two and a half hours for the luggage to be found. I left in
the dark, I got home in the dark and I honestly don't know if I'll make it
out there.

I'm really aggravated by the NCAA too. Stacey at Rutgers begged and pleaded
to allow us (the beat reporters) on the charter. We all agreed to pay our
fares and there were plenty of empty seats, so we wouldn't be bumping

The argument was that isn't coverage and attention that we provide

The NCAA said no.

I'm not making it, Bridget's not making and poor
Paul's trying again today, but he's not definite. Smart, right?

RU had better get to Greensboro.


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