Spotlight shines on Delle Donne, No. 8 Delaware

By Doug Feinberg

Associated Press

Published: Tuesday, Feb. 28 2012 2:50 p.m. MST

"It's not good," said UConn coach Geno Auriemma, whose team has played on ESPN networks 30 times over the past four years during the regular season. "We'd like to see compelling games that go down to the wire. On the men's side they have bracketbuster games. That would be great for the women's game.

"It can't be the same ol'e, same ol'e. Delaware, Wisconsin-Green Bay, Bowling Green, St. Bonaventure, there's a lot of good stuff going on around the country."

Auriemma has definitely noticed the Blue Hens' rise and the play of Delle Donne, who spent a few days on the UConn campus the summer before her freshman year before deciding to play closer to home. Delle Donne, who is eligible for the WNBA draft this season, has already said she will return next year.

"It's a great story, the Delaware story," he said. "It will be interesting to see what happens when they get in the NCAA tournament. I think it's great for the game that she will be back next year. Like when Rebecca (Lobo) was here. Maybe they build on it. It's a beautiful campus, close proximity to a lot of good players. This could be the start of something real special."

Buoyed by its success, Delaware was selected to host the first two rounds of the NCAA tournament next season. The Blue Hens draw an average of 3,700 fans, with Delle Donne being no small part of the reason.

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