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.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Muffet McGraw and Val Ackerman Head Next WBHOF Class

By Mel Greenberg

UNCASVLLE, Conn. --
In a little while, Notre Dame coach Muffet McGraw, a former St. Joseph's star, and former WNBA and USA Basketball President Val Ackerman will be formally announced as members of the newest class of six inductees to the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in Knoville, Tenn., according to sources familiar with the selection process.

The sources requested anonymity because the formal announcement had not been made.

The group will be announced on ESPN during the telecast of the WNBA All-Star Game, which begins 3:30 p.m. at the Mohegan Sun Arena.

The class was voted last month by the board of directors during the induction weekend that saw ESPN broadcaster and former UConn star Rebecca Lobo become one of six inductees from the 2010 class.

McGraw, a Big Five Hall of Famer who guided the Irish to the 2001 NCAA title, is the second person inducted to the WBHOF wirth ties to the Hawks.

Theresa Grentz, a foemer Immaculata srar who was the Hawks' second coach when McGraw played at the Philadelphia university in the late 1970s, is a previous inductee.

Ackerman, who grew uo near Trenton, N.J., was the founding president of the WNBA and also became the first female president of USA Basketball.

She presided over the American delegation that saw both the men's and women's teams win gold medals at Bejing, China in 2008.

Ackerman is a former Virginia star whose collegiate coach Debbie Ryan was inducted in 2008.

Former St, Joseph's coach Jim Foster, now at Ohio State and who once had McGraw on his staff as an assistant with the Hawks, received strong consideration in last month's vote, as did Hartford coach and former UConn star Jennifer Rizzotti, according to a source familiar with the selection process.

We'll be back in a while with the rest of the class.

-- Mel

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