WNBA draft selects next pros


The 2017 WNBA draft landed a remarkable number of professional athletes on April 13.

Kelsey Plum went first in the WNBA draft Thursday. Then, South Carolina took over. Plum was taken No. 1 by the San Antonio Stars. Plum finished her college career with an NCAA-record 3,527 points.

“I’ve been dreaming about it for so long,” Plum said. “I’m really excited and grateful for the opportunity and will make the most of it.”

Nearly every known sports news outlet has covered a story about Washington guard Kelsey Plum. For example ESPN, USA Today, Seattle Times and many more immediately began writing detailed interest stories about the elite guard.

Throughout the time leading up to the day of the WNBA draft a ton of predictions have been made by many websites such as “Doc Sports” and “ODDSHARK.” These predictions along with social media outlets has put a ton of stress and pressure on the student-athletes seeking an opportunity to play professionally.

As the South Carolina Lady Gamecocks are coming off a National Championship, they also had three elite athletes enter the WNBA draft this year. One Lady Gamecock, Alaina Coates, recently had surgery regarding an ankle injury got drafted in the first round as the second overall pick.

After sitting out last season due to the NCAA transfer rules, Allisha Gray was drafted as the 4th overall pick in the first round. Lastly, Kaela Davis topped it off for the Gamecocks as the 10th overall pick in the first round.

One of our very own Lady Canes, Adrienne Motley was drafted as the 32nd overall pick in the third round. The Miami Herald, Sun Sentinel, The ACC, and Daily Press all covered Motley. Local news media outlets are looking to do interviews and reach out to her to gain more detailed feedback about Motley’s reactions and feeling to being drafted to the Indiana Fever.

Lady Gamecocks win NCAA title


One of the big stories in sports this week is the South Carolina Lady Gamecocks winning their first national basketball championship. After losing a prime piece to their team, 6-foot-4 Alaina Coates, the Lady Gamecocks were not expected to make such a run in the NCAA tournament.

The Portland Press Herald covered South Carolina’s history-making debut. The article mentioned how Dawn Staley, SC’s head coach, had never earned a national championship while playing for four years for Virginia. She also coached the Gamecocks to the national semifinals two years ago before losing to Notre Dame.

“You have to give tribute to the former players,” Staley said in the story. “Go back to my Temple days, they believed in our vision. We took that vision to South Carolina, and that vision was we’ll be national champions. If you stick with us and if you’re disciplined, if you believe, all these players believed in that. Happy our words came true to them.”

USA Today also published coverage on the record-breaking team. The article discussed how Mississippi State had all the momentum on its side after a shocking win over UConn on Friday night that ended the Huskies’ record 111-game winning streak. MSU was expected to pull off another upset, however, the Bulldogs fell short.

NCAA.com explained how this women’s basketball team has built its reputation on defense. The stellar defensive effort propelled the team past a nine-point halftime deficit in the Final Four.

“So, we were fortunate to be down nine,” Staley said. “But I just wanted to get our kids to the locker room at halftime because I knew, no matter how many points we were down, we could utilize our speed to get back into play — whether that’s trapping in the half court, whether that’s picking up full court, whether that’s coming off ball screens, setting our players up in positions where they could be effective.”

ESPN also covered this story in which Staley described her emotions the night she was crowned a national champion versus the emotion she felt in 1992 after losing her senior year in the semi-finals.

“I was exhausted, because I wanted it so much,” Staley said. “I put so much work and energy into being a national champion that the emotion was just to cry. To let it out. And 25 years later, no tears. Just going to enjoy it.”

Dallas hosts NCAA Women’s Final Four


As March Madness is gradually coming to an end, this first week of April will mark the day one out of the final four teams remaining will be crowned national champions.

Four elite teams have managed propel pass very talented teams in search of winning the NCAA women’s basketball championship. The championship tournament is being held in Dallas. Dallas is home to one of the top WNBA teams, the Dallas Wings, and many of the players will be in attendance to check the immense talent present.

The four teams remaining are South Carolina, Stanford, Connecticut and Mississippi State. With final four match-ups taking off soon, a variety of news media outlets are making their predictions known in regards to how things will turn out. In a story published by USA Today, each of the four teams received coverage in regards to why they may win it all.

The South Carolina Gamecocks are back in the Final Four for the second time in three years. Led by two time SEC player of the year, the Gamecocks are a solid team. Accompanied by a ton of athleticism from Kaela Davis and Allisha Gray, this versatile team has every bit of reason as to why they are a special contender.

Being eliminated in the Sweet 16 in the previous year, Stanford has proven this postseason to be a gritty team. They defeated Notre Dame by one point in the Elite Eight. With the exclusion of drastically elite scorers, the Cardinals are well-balanced and have several talented perimeter shooters, including senior guard Karlie Samuelson.

The talk of the town is the matchup between the Samuelson sisters. Power forward, Katie Lou Samuelson, is averaging more than 20 points per game while shooting exceptionally well from behind the arc. The Huskies arrive in Dallas as the overwhelming favorite to win their fifth consecutive national title, while riding a 111-game winning streak.

The Mississippi State Lady Bulldogs might be the only other team in Dallas that can score enough to keep up with Connecticut after averaging nearly 93 points in four NCAA tournament games. This talented team is led by guard, Morgan William, who scored 41 points in the game against No. 1 seed Baylor. This is the Bulldogs’ first trip to the Final Four, so a just an NCAA championship appearance will be record breaking for them.

Baylor coach apologizes for comment


Back in January 2017, a lawsuit was filed by a former student that attended Baylor University. Allegedly, 31 different Baylor football players committed 52 “acts of rape” between 2011 and 2014, which was reported by CBS Sports.

After gaining a well-deserved win 500 over Texas Tech, Baylor women’s basketball coach Kim Mulkey made a comment that caused tremendous controversy. Reported by John Elizondo of ABC, Mulkey said this to the crowd in attendance at the Ferrell Center following Baylor’s win over Texas Tech: “If someone around you ever says I’ll never send my daughter to Baylor, you knock them right in the face.”

She has recently released an apology after comments made last week regarding the school’s sexual assault scandal. According to ESPN, Mulkey stated, “I’m sorry for those choice of words, timing wasn’t good, poor analogy as well, because if you know me, I’m an emotional person, coached and coached with emotion. It all got the best of me, because I love this place. A lot of bad things happened here, but I’ve always thought about the victims.”

Mulkey previously expressed regret for those comments in an interview with Mechelle Voepel of espnW.com Tuesday.

“I hate that I used the remark about punching them in the face,” Mulkey said. “That was not literal. I was trying to make a point, to be firm in what you are saying back at them. I’m not a violent person. I apologize for the very poor choice of words.”

CNN, Fox offer different views of speech


On Tuesday, President Donald Trump indicated his interest in seeking to help pass an immigration reform bill.

In CNN’s coverage, this new source referred to it as his “great immigration fake-out” in an article titled “Trump cruel bait-and-switch on immigration.” CNN also reported that another one of Trump’s interests were to propose and potentially pass a bill that could grant legal status to millions of undocumented immigrants. This would allow for those individuals to gain the opportunity to become legal citizens of the country of their desire.

CNN’s outlook on Trump’s address was seemingly more focused on the shortcomings of anything that was discussed. While emphasizing such limitations, this was said: “While Trump stopped short of endorsing a path to citizenship for the undocumented, this was nonetheless a startling break with his past hard-line stance on immigration.

A senior administration official also told journalists that Trump would be open to legalization for undocumented immigrants who have not committed serious or violent crimes.” This statement portrays the idea that Trump is only willing to consider being open to legalization if the person is accompanied by a clean slate.

Fox News’ approach on his address was more pro-Trump. Some of the political language used in the article titled “Mr. Trump’s very expensive address” delineates Trump as a more conservative president.

The article stated that “compared to his campaign filled with “Trumpisms,” this address was the more positive and optimistic, telling of his new nationalism. He added grace notes about minority groups, shied away from taunting or tormenting his rivals, and summoned his countrymen to the project of restoring, what else, American greatness.

Fox News tends to support the brighter side of things and hardly ever, if ever, mentions the downfalls associated with President Trump’s address.

Comments spark WNBA controversy


“Me being heterosexual and straight, and being vocal in my identity as a straight woman, was huge,” Wiggins said in the San Diego Union-Tribune. “I would say 98 percent of the women in the WNBA are gay women. It was a conformist type of place. There was a whole different set of rules they [the other players] could apply.”

This statement was made by a former WNBA star, Candice Wiggins. News sources said that she said the lesbian culture broke her spirit. Wiggins told the Union-Tribune that the WNBA had a “very, very harmful” culture and that she was bullied throughout her WNBA career from 2008 to 2015. Wiggins allegedly was mistreated because she was straight.

This controversial stand made by Wiggins about the LGBT community was covered by Bleacher Report, ESPN, Pioneer Press, Sports Illustrated and the New York Post. Immediately after her comments were released to the news media, other reliable outlets shared the news as well.

Wiggins branded the WNBA culture as “toxic.” Many people, not only players and coaches were stunned, but fans as well. Maintaining a certain image for the WNBA is vital and from a media standpoint, Wiggins degraded it.

Even the WNBA president wanted her voice to be heard. In response to Wiggins’ remark, Lisa Borders released a statement about her experience in the league.

“When I first read the comments from retired WNBA player Candice Wiggins, I was stunned and disappointed,” Borders said. “In my time with the league and my capacity as a fan before that, I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know a group of highly competitive women who are driven to succeed at the highest level on the court and constantly striving to help create opportunity for all members of their communities.”

Wiggins received so much attention and publicity from the media that she was asked to do a follow-up story. In the Union-Tribune, Wiggins said she used the figure of 98 percent to be “illustrative.” “It was my way to illustrate the isolation that I felt personally,” Wiggins said. “I felt like the 2 percent versus the 98 percent. It felt that way to me. And it’s not just the players. It was the coaches. It was the leaders.”

NBA logo honors Black History Month


Black History Month, or African-American History Month, is a time for influential people and change makers to be recognized for their impact on the world. Initially labeled, “Negro History Week,” this annual celebration has manifested over time. Evolving into an entire month of historic celebration, black Americans and their achievements are recognized.

This second month of February is responsible for such a prestigious time. Hebru Brantley is responsible for redesigning logos for every basketball team in the NBA in honor of Black History Month.

“Everything the happens historically doesn’t necessarily translate within one small design,” Brantley said. “History is long and long-winded sometimes so it’s hard to pick apart a moment and make it clear from an aesthetics standpoint, but I looked at pivotal moments and certain individuals that can be represented with these teams and logos and become sort of the re-branded version of this team.”

Black history is so empowering and inspirational that more news outlets should have made it more of a priority to make people aware of this creative logo enhancement done by Brantley. Although covered by CNN, the overall awareness of this shift was not awarded with a justifiable amount of credibility.

“Still wanting to capture the feeling of what these teams are about and say as I can from a historical context within this very small design”, as Brantley mentioned, he designed some very intricate logos.

For example, the Atlanta Hawks logo pays tribute to two very important and historic institutions in Atlanta. Formerly referred to as “the richest Negro street in the world,” Sweet Auburn is home for the Hawks. In the logo, the idolized bird is wearing sunglasses similar to those of Ray Charles, the music legend.

American woman visits 196 nations


An American woman, Cassie De Pecol, traveled to 196 countries in the duration of 18 months and 26 days. As she traveled to every country in the world, she explained how she was so overwhelmed with the variety of culture she was able to experience. Her goal was also to promote peace in her “own small way” within the people considering everything that is going on in the world right now.

Covered by CNN, they explained that Cassie broke an all-time record for the amount of time it took the previous record breaking traveler to travel around the entire world. Most news coverage now is about Trump and executive matters as well as sports and celebrity concerns.

However, this is highly commendable and should have received a lot more coverage than it did considering it was such a remarkable deed. Other news has been overshadowing minor news that deserves recognition as well. Although I am not sure how much coverage the previous record-breaking traveler received, I’m almost sure it was exceptionally more than Cassie.

Also considering that she is the first female to do so, it should ignite much more reason to want to cover such a story in depth on a much broader spectrum across conventional news media.

Carter family grows by two


The queen of breaking the internet just recently revealed her pregnancy via Instagram. Although it was posted on a reliable source, it didn’t become breaking news until reported by CNN, The Huffington Post, Time Magazine, and Us Weekly in the celebrity mom’s section.

Billboard.com made it known that the unleashing of such news generated a record breaking number on the amount of like on one picture as well as over half a million tweets in just an hour.

Billboard also included some congratulatory posts made by some fellow celebrities. CNN also covered this story describing Beyoncé as the new queen of Instagram.

She also released a plethora of images from her maternity shoot on her website in an album titled I have three hearts, implying that she is having twins. Once news sources got a hold of these remarkable photos, they made it their priority to release them ASAP. The music industry as well as fans felt a sense of attachment to the celebrity since she was sharing this with the world and more specifically her fans.

There has also been talk about how she has two performances coming up and the 2017 Grammy Awards and at Coachella. People are worried she may not perform even after they have already purchased tickets.

My assumption is that she’ll still perform, but her show will have to be a lot more conservative and mellow. It wouldn’t be a surprise if the expecting mother takes this opportunity as a album dropping outlet. She would definitely draw the attention of millions as she’s done already.