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March 31, 2013

Louisville coach has an idea to stop Baylor: play six

(Continued)

OKLAHOMA CITY —

Modest Mulkey: Baylor coach Kim Mulkey took a note out of Barry Switzer’s book when asked just how her team has won 74 of 75 games.

“Talent,” she said. “I’m a coach who believes in acknowledging what you have.”

She did, though, give her players some credit beyond their natural gifts.

“Once you assemble that talent, you’ve got to fix egos, fix roles, let people know what is expected of them … Just to watch each of them evolve into what their role is, accept it, be content and happy for each other, for our program as a whole, makes you proud as a coach to have them.

Brooklyn’s way: Apparently, Mulkey and sophomore forward Brooklyn Pope weren’t always on the same page. The question was given to Pope, how did she and her coach get their personalities on the same page. Here was Pope’s illuminating answer.

“I think … coach Mulkey didn’t really know how to bring out the best in me,” she said. “This year, it kind of came together that I’m not the type of kid to howl (at) or text after the game, after a practice; just let me go with it and it will be better if I find my way versus you trying to guide me. Let me do my thing, everything will go smooth. She don’t bother me at all.”

Same old Ellenberg: Sooner shooting guard Aaryn Ellenberg is coming off 22- and 27-point performances last week against Central Michigan and UCLA. Against the Chippewas, 18 came in the second half after it had become a very close game. Against the Bruins, she was great later, but better early.

If she’s feeling any pressure to get going early against Tennessee, she’s not copping to it.

“My job’s really just to do what I’ve been doing,” she said. “I mean, there’s no added pressure or anything for me to try to go score the most points or score all the points early. (My job is) just pretty much do what I’ve been doing and just play along with everybody else and we’ll be OK.”

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