Afternoon State Sports Briefs:UW interviews Bollant, McGuff for women's hoops positionWisconsin Sports
-- The University of Wisconsin has reportedly interviewed two candidates for its women’s basketball coaching vacancy. The Madison Capital Times said UW-Green Bay coach Matt Bollant interviewed with Badger officials this week as did Kevin McGuff of Xavier.
MADISON - The University of Wisconsin has reportedly interviewed two candidates for its women’s basketball coaching vacancy. The Madison Capital Times said UW-Green Bay coach Matt Bollant interviewed with Badger officials this week as did Kevin McGuff of Xavier.
The Web site said a third candidate was also expected to have an interview before the week’s out – and that could be Iowa State coach Bill Fennelly. Wisconsin has never had a man coach its women’s basketball team. The Cap Times said Bollant is considered the favorite by some observers. He led Green Bay to a 34-2 record this season, and the school’s first appearance in the NCAA Sweet-Sixteen round. Bollant is 117-16 in four years with the Phoenix. The Badgers are looking for a replacement to Lisa Stone, who was fired last week after eight years in Madison.
Milwaukee Bucks’ center Andrew Bogut was sick today – and he’s doubtful for what could be the Bucks’ most important game of the season. They’ll play the Pacers tonight in Indianapolis – and if the Bucks lose, they’ll drop to four games behind Indiana for the final Eastern Conference playoff spot with only seven to go. Coach Scott Skiles said Bogut missed the team’s shoot-around this morning, and it had nothing to do with the migraine headaches he gets on occasion. If Bogut doesn’t play, Skiles says he’ll try to go with a quicker presence in the post by starting Larry Sanders, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, or Drew Gooden. But none of those players match the height of Indiana’s 7-2 center, Roy Hibbert. Even so, Skiles says a smaller lineup has worked before against Indiana – but he says it’s not the ideal way to start the game. Milwaukee is 30-and-44 after winning just four-of-their-last-10 games, including their last game on Wednesday night at Toronto. Indiana is 34-42, with a two-game winning streak. The Pacers can move up one spot in the playoff picture if they can gain three games on seventh-place New York – so Indiana has a lot to play for as well. Milwaukee had won six straight from Indiana until February 12th, when they lost by six. Danny Grainger had 30 points for the Pacers that night.
Even if their brackets are busted, Wisconsinites will have someone to cheer for in the NCAA men’s Final Four. VCU head coach Shaka Smart is from Oregon just south of Madison. He was a point guard for Oregon High School in the early-to-mid-1990’s – and his on-floor command of the game is certainly paying off now. VCU was among the first four teams that played before the 64-team brackets kicked off 15 days ago. They have the Number-11 seed, and they’ll take on eighth-seeded Butler in the opening contest from Houston late tomorrow afternoon. Connecticut and Kentucky square off in the nightcap. And the winner will go for the national championship on Monday night.