Mississippi Lady Rebels
| MESSAGE BOARD
REGION: West SEED: 10
COACH: Carol Ross CONFERENCE: SEC
Road to the Final Four ...................................................................................
|PLAYER TO WATCH|
This year's freshman class is full of future stars, and Price ranks right there with them. The 5-foot-9 freshman guard tallied 14 double-doubles in the regular season -- second only in the SEC behind Florida senior Vanessa Hayden -- and scored a career-high 32 points against Tennessee.
ANALYSIS BY ESPN'S STACEY DALES-SCHUMAN
In just her first season at Ole Miss, Carol Ross has been distinguished, along with Tennessee's Pat Summitt, as the SEC co-Coach of the Year -- and rightfully so. Since inheriting last year's club that earned just one victory throughout the entire SEC regular season, Ross and crew finished at .500 in conference play this time around, giving the program its first berth to the NCAA Tournament since 1996.
It sure helps when you have the SEC Freshman of the Year, Armintie Price. Price leads all Rebel players in both scoring and rebounding with 15 and nine, respectively, while shooting 56 percent from the floor --not bad for a rookie guard.
What's really impressive is the fact that this mature youngster is playing upwards of 31 minutes each game, and boy, can she can up and down the floor! One area that Price will need to improve upon, especially since she attempts six of them per game, is her 64 percent free-throw stroke. With such an aggressive attack, she inevitably draws a lot of physical contact resulting in free shots, and we all know that free shots can often win basketball games.
The team's second-most productive weapon is senior guard Genice Terry, who is averaging a dozen points plus four boards. She too likes to create off the bounce, but is also known to launch five or six triples per contest at a relative team best of 34 percent accuracy.
In the middle you'll find 6-foot-3 center Amber Watts. Though known for solid interior defense, Watts has chipped in nearly 10 points and snagged five caroms this season for the Rebels.
Ole Miss certainly prefers an up-tempo style of play, and the Lady Rebels ultimately look to score inside the arc, shooting just 29 percent from the trey. With tremendous speed and explosiveness, they lead the entire conference and are ranked nationally with 11 pickpockets per outing (now that's anticipation). Ole Miss also leads the SEC, a conference built upon speed and power, with a magnificent 16 offensive boards per game.
Ross certainly has her lady Rebels playing hard, aggressive basketball. The thing that might be most impressive, however, is the fact that while it was her first season, Ross never shied away from competition. Her team faced a strength of schedule in the top 25! And although much of that is due to competing in the SEC, one can only credit the team's will to fight and battle against even the toughest of foes. That's why she's the Co-Coach of the Year, and that's why Ole Miss will be something to reckon with in the future.