NEW YORK (AP) Louisville coach Jeff Walz is never one to mince words. After his team lost to No. 5 Maryland on Thursday, he called out his players for their lack of hustle, missed free throws and inadequate defense.
He then went on to discuss society's decision to hand out trophies to nearly everyone who plays a game now regardless of whether they win or lose.
''You've got to have a will. You've got to have a will,'' he said. ''Right now the generation of kids that are coming through, everybody gets a damn trophy, OK? You finish last, you come home with a trophy. You kidding me? I mean, what's that teaching kids? It's OK to lose. And unfortunately, it's our society. It's what we're building for. And it's not just in basketball; it's in life. You know, everybody thinks they should get a job. Everybody thinks they should get a good job. No, that's not the way it works. But unfortunately that's what we are preparing for. Because you finish fifth, you walk home with this nice trophy, parents are all excited.''
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His team responded to their coach's viral rant by showing toughness down the stretch in an overtime win over rival Kentucky on Sunday.
''We all took it to heart,'' Louisville star Myisha Hines-Allen said. ''We knew we had Kentucky coming in next, so we had to chew it, had to take it and come ready to play. It started in practice because we had energy that next day. He was completely right.''
In other things that happened this week:
POLL MUSINGS: It's was a rough week for a few teams in the Top 25. Third-ranked South Carolina dropped its first contest of the season, losing at Duke. The Gamecocks could see their run of top five appearances in the poll end as they've been in the first five every week since the start of the 2014 season. The win was Duke's highest since the Blue Devils beat No. 3 Ohio State in 2009. No. 12 Oklahoma lost a pair of games. No. 22 Tennessee also got blown out by Baylor on Sunday, and should fall out of the poll Monday. That would mark the second straight season that the Lady Vols fell out of the Top 25.
STRONG STARTS: No. 21 Colorado continues its unbeaten run to start the season as the Buffaloes won their eighth consecutive game (8-0) under first-year head coach JR Payne. They've already surpassed last season's win total (7-23) and are off to their best start since 2013. It's only the sixth time that Colorado has won its first eight games and is only the second time the school has done it while beating a Top 25 team (Kentucky) in those contests. Next up for the Buffs is rival Colorado State on Thursday. … Providence is also undefeated through its first seven games, the best beginning to a season for the Friars since 1990-91. … Boise State has won its first seven games for the first time since 2009-10. The Broncos beat Washington State 77-73 in OT on Sunday, their first road win over a Pac-12 opponent since Dec. 9, 2007.
HONORING NIELE: Notre Dame honored longtime assistant and former star Niele Ivey by putting her in the school's Ring of Honor on Sunday . The 39-year old has coached at the school for the past decade and is the third women's basketball player to have the accolade, joining teammate Ruth Riley and Skylar Diggins. Ivey helped the Irish win the national championship in 2001 as the starting point guard.
RISING TO THE RAFTERS: Rutgers retired the No. 25 jersey of former great Cappie Pondexter on Thursday night at halftime of the game against Duke. The former star became the third women's player at the school to have that honor, with her No. 25 joining June Olkowski and Sue Wicks in the rafters. Pondexter helped the Scarlet Knights reach the NCAA Tournament regional final her junior season. The current team all wore shirts with Pondexter's jersey number on it
MILESTONES: Marquette's Natisha Hiedeman had a triple-double against Western Illinois on Friday night – the second in program history. She had 12 points, 18 rebounds and 10 assists. The 18 rebounds were the most in the Big East this season.
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