Geno Auriemma responds to Muffet McGraw for his claims of television ‘bias’ towards UConn

Geno Auriemma responds to Muffet McGraw for his claims of television ‘bias’ towards UConn

UConn women’s basketball coach Geno Auriemma responded to former Notre Dame women’s basketball coach Muffet McGraw following his allegation that there is a “total bias” when it comes to the influence of the Huskies on the sport. For her, the broadcasting of games at UConn on ESPN is the root of the problem.

Auriemma didn’t beat around the bush after hearing the comments. Here’s what he said, via the “UConn WBB Coaches Show” on Monday:

“I think the bias has something to do, if there is any, with the 11 national championships, which are much more than two. At least I remember it in ‘Sesame Street.’

Before McGraw retired in 2020, he had an enduring rivalry with Auriemma dating back to 1996. In the all-time series between schools, UConn has a 39-13 lead in the series, including eight clashes in the Finals. Four. Notre Dame holds a 5-3 lead in the women’s Final Four when the two schools have met. However, UConn has outscored Notre Dame both times the teams have met in the national championship game.

This back and forth began on December 22, when McGraw appeared on the “Off the Looking Glass” podcast with Kate Fagan and Jessica Smetana. He was asked if he thought the Huskies have a “huge” influence on women’s basketball.

“Absolutely,” McGraw replied. “UConn has done great things, and they’ve won a lot more than anyone except Tennessee. What they’ve done has been amazing. I think people measure their team by them. When we joined the Big East, we thought, ‘We want to get to where are they. That is what we want to be. We are trying to emulate them. “

“But I think it’s over the top with ESPN. That’s the Connecticut network. Notre Dame has NBC. Connecticut has ESPN. That’s absolutely complete bias.”

Auriemma didn’t take those comments kindly and scoffed further at the claim.

“I want to thank the people at ESPN for helping us win those 111 [games] in a row. If it weren’t for them, there’s no way we would have done it, “he said.” Hopefully there are some folks who can take some credit for that … There are plenty of other schools near ESPN.

“I don’t think the bias has anything to do with ESPN’s location or UConn’s location.”

According to ESPN, UConn has had four women’s basketball games broadcast on its family of networks this season. ESPN also noted that “most of the Huskies games are broadcast on SNY, and Fox is the official network of the Big East, including their conference tournament.”

Auriemma echoed that, saying that SNY is actually the school’s “network.”

“Notre Dame has its own network; our network is SNY,” Auriemma said. “I don’t know why anyone would think ESPN is our network. I’m glad we didn’t go 30 years between winning championships. So maybe NBC should help them (UConn) a little more.”

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