College Sports Madness’ Richard Kent caught up with Connecticut women's basketball head coach Geno Auriemma at the Big East Media Day at the New York Athletic Club on Thursday, October 18th. Coach Auriemma's team is picked first in the conference preseason poll, garnering 12 of the 15 first place votes. Notre Dame received the other three. Coach Auriemma voted for Notre Dame because coaches can't vote for their own team.
College Sports Madness - What are your thoughts on Notre Dame leaving the conference?
Geno Auriemma - Connecticut did a lot for Notre Dame as did the Big East. We have been through this before and we have survived.
CSM - Will you play them again?
GA - I don't know. Like we always do, we're trying to balance it out. And we've got Maryland. We've got Duke. So how many teams are you going to play from each conference?
CSM - Congratulations on your Olympic Gold Medal win, but you looked pained throughout the Olympics.
GA - It is tough to coach kids who you don't really know that well.
CSM - Is there pressure on UConn this year?
GA - Everyone expects us to go to the Final Four each year.
CSM - You are playing defending National Champion Baylor this season. Was it tough to schedule them during conference play?
GA - We would have played them in August. Ten years ago it was tough to get women's basketball on TV. Now we have a Big Monday game at 9 p.m.
CSM - What is your staff like?
GA - My assistant coaches are so good we are almost better when I am not around.
CSM - How will Rutgers be this season?
GA - Everyone hopes Rutgers will be back to where they are accustomed to being.
CSM - What are some keys to the Big east this season?
GA - Can Georgetown and St. John's sustain what they achieved going from bottom to top?