This afternoon most of the people in the Twin Cities will be watching the Vikings take on their eternal rivals, the Packers in storied Lambeau field. I, along with Quinn, will be at the Barn, watching the Gopher Women take on 23rd ranked New Mexico. There was a time when nothing would take precedence to a Vikes playoff game. Remember, I’m old enough to remember Fran Tarkington and the Purple People Eaters. Which has a lot to do with the fact that I couldn’t give a shit about today’s game. In fact I’d probably be rooting for the Pack. They certainly deserve it more. I just can’t give my heart to a team that can’t make a big defensive stop and never makes the big play on defense. I remember games where the defense outscored the offense.
The Gopherettes on the other hand can bring some ‘D’. When they turn up the half court trap pressure, they must be terrifying. Shannon Schoenrock actally does a demented staccato scream that resembles a warcry from the natives of her hometown in Southwestern Minnesota. Maybe something her German ancestors learned in 1863. Certainly disconcerting. And then you have April, laying in the weeds waiting for that telegraphed pass, for the oppotunity to come flying out of nowhere to make the interception and start the break. And behind that you’ve got Janelle McCarville ready to not only block your shot, but tip it to herself ala Bill Russell and fire an outlet pass to a breaking guard. Or to Jaimie Broback a 6’3″ power forward who can run the floor like a guard.
I like this team. They were picked for third in the Big10, but OSU has already lost a game, so that might put them in the fight for the title. It’s different not having Lindsay on the floor, but it does give other talented players the chance to step up once in awhile. I love the coach. Pam Borton. She doesn’t bullshit and you can just see the way she used the pre-season as a teaching tool. I think she’s close to getting them where she wants them to be, but you can bet they will be improving all season. And you can bet a big part of their identiy will be defense.
EDIT: Well eat my words, the Vike’s defense played great, and they actually beat the Packers. Which will be nice tomorrow at work. Not having to put up with gloating CheeseHeads.
And the Gopherette’s. Held New Mexico to 35 points.