The legacy of the University of Connecticut women’s basketball program is astounding.
- 32 NCAA Tournament bids.
- 13 straight Final Four appearances.
- 11 NCAA Championships.
- Six undefeated seasons.
The Huskies are synonymous with great players and championships. And Huskies Coach Geno Auriemma is considered one of the best coaches in any sport, anywhere.
Entering the Big East Tournament this weekend, the Huskies are 22-5 and ranked No. 7 in the latest Top 25 poll. Star sophomore Paige Bueckers has returned from injury just in time for another NCAA Tournament run.
And while U. Conn hasn’t won an NCAA title since 2016 (the longest non-title stretch for the program in the last 26 years), the Huskies are a strong favorite to get to Minneapolis. That’s great news for Connecticut online sports betting as March Madness gets underway.
Selection Sunday is March 13 and we will find out just where the Huskies will go. While we wait, let’s look back at some of the March Madness legends from the storied U. Conn women’s basketball program.
Seven Star UConn women’s basketball players
Lobo deserves credit as the player who truly elevated the Huskies program to a championship level. The center was named the 1995 NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player averaging 16 points and 6.5 rebounds.
In a battle for women’s basketball superiority in the 1995 final with Tennessee (winner of eight NCAA titles), the Huskies rallied back from six points down at halftime, with Lobo scoring 17 points. U. Conn finished with its first undefeated season: 35-0.
What Moore can you say?
What couldn’t Moore do?
Maya Moore took the Huskies to four Final Fours in four years and was the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player in 2010 when the Huskies finished 39-0 and beat Stanford for the NCAA title. She’s the all-time leading scorer in the program’s history with 3,036 points (which also ranks tenth all time in Division 1 history).
Auriemma may have had the comment of his entire tenure when he was asked about his team’s chances of winning an NCAA title. He replied, “We have Diana, and you don’t.”
Blessed with an unrelenting competitive fire, Taurasi lifted the Huskies to three NCAA titles (2002, 2003, and 2004) and was twice named the Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player. She was the two-time Naismith Player of the Year and finished 139-8 in college.
Away from U. Conn, yeah, she’s done pretty well. Taurasi has been a part of four Olympic Gold medal squads from the USA and won three WNBA titles.
Bird still ranks first on the U. Conn statistical charts in three-point percentage finishing her career at .459 from beyond the arc. She finished with 585 assists and ranks No. 1 in free throw percentage at the school (89 percent).
So yeah, this Bird could shoot.
Remember, she missed most of her freshman year with the Huskies with a torn ACL. Bird took the Huskies to an undefeated 39-0 record as a senior in 2002 capping it off with an 82-70 win over Oklahoma for the NCAA title. She won the Nancy Lieberman Award three times as the best point guard in women’s college basketball.
She was the first freshman to ever win the Most Outstanding Player award in the NCAA Tournament in 2013. She’s second on the school’s all-time scoring list (2,401) and first in blocked shots (414).
Stewart was the first NCAA player to ever have both 400 assists and 400 blocks in her career. Oh, and she won four NCAA titles and finished with a college career record of 151-5. Her resume might be the greatest in women’s college basketball history.
Smart, strong, and fundamentally brilliant, Charles record 52 double-doubles in her college career with the Huskies, including 14 her senior year. Her 2,346 points rank fourth all-time at the school, and she was part of two national championship teams.
In the pros, Charles was the WNBA Most Valuable Player in 2012 and has won three Olympic Gold Medals. She recently signed with the Phoenix Mercury.
Maybe not the household name like some of the other players on this list, but Bascom, who graduated in 1991, was the key figure to help U. Conn rise in the world of women’s college basketball.
She was part of the team that won the school’s first Big East title and first Big East Conference Tournament. Bascom was a three-time Big East Player of the Year and finished with 2,177 points in her career.
Bascom was part of the first Huskies squad to make the Final Four, when it beat Clemson, 60-57, in the regional final. Her 39 points in the first-round win over Toledo are still the most points scored by a Connecticut player in a single game in March Madness.