Florida State is hosting the NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament in Tallahassee this weekend. The first and second rounds will be played at FSU. Here is a quick primer on the weekend and the four teams selected to play in Tallahassee:
Saturday March 21 (First Round)
#10 Oklahoma State vs. #7 Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU)- 11 AM ET
#15 Alabama State vs. #2 Florida State- 1:30 PM ET
Monday March 23 (Second Round)
Winner of Game 1 vs. Winner of Game 2- 6 PM ET
Donald L. Tucker Center; Tallahassee, FL
Single Game- $7
Oklahoma State (20-11, 9-9 Big 12):
A #10 seed in the tournament the Cowgirls are balanced in scoring with four girls averaging double figures led by 1st Team All Big 12 guard and Syracuse transfer, Brittney Martin (13.8 PPG, 8.7 RPG). OSU isn't a particularly deep team and gets almost all its scoring from four players. Oklahoma State did reach the Sweet 16 a season ago and their contest with FGCU is a rematch from last year's first round NCAA tournament game. This is a dangerous team that has experience in its starters that have made a previous tourney run.
Florida Gulf Coast (30-2, 14-0 A-Sun):
A #7 seed in Tallahassee the Eagles are a very good team (ranked #20 in AP Poll) that comes in perhaps a tad under-seeded. FGCU has won 30 games this season and have some good wins on the year. They are led by the one-two scoring punch of A-Sun Player of the Year Whitney Knight (14.9 PPG) and 1st Team All A-Sun guard Kaneisha Atwater (14.0 PPG). In addition they have shooters everywhere, and make 10 threes a game as a team. The knock on the Eagles is that they haven't played a strong schedule (#81 nationally) and breezed through a weak conference. Will they be able to handle playing stronger teams? Time will tell, but it's a squad that can legitimately get to the Sweet 16.
Alabama State (17-14, 10-8 SWAC):
The Lady Hornets come into the tournament as a #15 seed and will likely be overmatched by Florida State on Saturday. ASU wasn't expected to make the NCAAs, but a run through their conference tournament bought them a bid to the dance. They are led in scoring by Britney Wright (17.0 PPG) and Jasmine Peeples (11.2 PPG, 10.2 RPG). It's a team that has some size and versatility, but will have to pull off a major upset to beat the Seminoles.
Florida State (29-4, 14-2 ACC)
The Noles are a #2 seed and have had a special season under National Coach of the Year Sue Semrau. FSU is deep, talented, and hungry as they have the tools to legitimately make a run at the Final Four. Florida State has five girls averaging double figures and has many options to lead the team night in and night out. Adut Bulgak (12.5 PPG, 9.7 RPG) and Maegan Conwright (11.7 PPG) are the two top scorers. However, the Noles have great depth with little drop off as the game wears. This Seminole team shoots the three-ball well, rebounds phenomenally, and will be playing at home where they are 14-0 in 2015. What could prevent Florida State from advancing to the Sweet 16 will be poor free-throw shooting and a high turnover rate. If the Noles can minimize their weaknesses in those departments, they have an excellent shot at a very deep run in the NCAA Tournament.