The Washington State Cougars are headed to their first NCAA women’s basketball tournament in 30 years, so we’re back with podcast number two this week in order to dedicate a show just to them!
But we needed a little help to preview WSU’s opener on Sunday against the South Florida Bulls (6:30 p.m. PT on ESPN2), so we’re continuing our growing trend of finding someone smarter and more knowledgeable than us to break it all down: Pac-12 Network’s Alyssa Charlston.
If you don’t know Charlston, she caught our ears this year calling one of WSU’s games, where her analysis was a notable step above what we’re usually subjected to on the men’s side. She clearly does her homework, has a keen eye for what’s developing on the floor in front of her, and isn’t beholden to predetermined narratives. Frankly, she should be getting herself a wider audience by also calling men’s games.
Instead, she has to settle — for now — for an appearance on our dumb show. It’s definitely our gain.
Talk about being overshadowed! Just happy I wasn’t the podcast guest after @Alyssacharlston— John Andrzejek (@CoachAndrzejek) March 17, 2021
Alyssa took us inside what makes Kamie Ethridge’s program so great this year, why Charlisse Leger-Walker is so freaking good, how the Cougs match up with USF, and who might be a difference maker. (Please forgive Jeff’s mispronunciation of Johanna Teder’s name.) And that’s just the first hour! After that, we touched on what it’s like being a broadcaster, discussed Kyle Smith’s burgeoning men’s program, and got a couple of Mike Leach stories from her days at KXLY.
In addition to her duties as a women’s basketball game analyst for the network, Alyssa also was the sideline reporter for the Pac-12 women’s tournament. Her day job is to create digital content for Gonzaga hoops (we don’t hold that against her); she’s also a former reporter for KXLY in Spokane, and once upon a time she was a damn good basketball player for the Idaho Vandals, leading them to a pair of tournament appearances in 2013 and 2014.
You’ll probably hate it. We don’t care. We also use naughty words from time to time. You’ve been warned.
(But if you do like it, please leave us a five-star review — it helps other people find the podcast.)
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