The women’s basketball madness gets started Saturday – the first step en route to the Final Four, which begins April 1 in Denver.
Brittney Griner and the Baylor Lady Bears have one goal this season – a national championship.
Anything less would be a disappointment for the undefeated top-seeded Lady Bears, who are looking to become the seventh school to run through a season unbeaten.
Standing in the way could be the other No. 1 seeds – Stanford, Connecticut and Notre Dame, dominant all season long. The Huskies and Irish both lost competitive games at Baylor this season.
The Irish also have been focused on winning a title after falling just short last season, losing in the championship game to Texas A&M, which is a No. 3 seed in the Raleigh region. The two teams could meet in the regional final.
Notre Dame, which will open up at home against Liberty, reached the national title game last year by knocking off UConn in the Final Four. It was the fourth straight season that UConn made the Final Four. The two teams, who already have played three times this year, could meet for a fourth time in Denver.
Purdue, a No. 4 seed, is the only other Indiana school in the tournament. They will face No. 13 South Dakota State Saturday in West Lafayette. The Boilermakers finished the season 24-8 (11-5) and won the Women’s Big Ten Tournament in double overtime against Nebraska.