DENVER — Brittney Griner had barely cut down the championship net when Baylor coach Kim Mulkey began talking about a possible repeat.
With the 6-foot-8 superstar coming back for her senior year and the other four starters returning, the Lady Bears will be the heavy favorite to repeat as champions if not go unbeaten for a second consecutive year.
“You’re making me embrace it now instead of letting me enjoy this,” Mulkey said. “Yes, we have everybody back that plays a majority of the minutes. We’ll embrace it, you guys aren’t going to let me hide it.”
Mulkey would like nothing better than to get back to the Final Four, which will take place in her home state of Louisiana next year.
“If we lose two, three, four, five and we go 30 and 10 I don’t care, I want to be in New Orleans,” she said. “That’s my home state, And I won’t have enough tickets for family, but I’ll do something to get them in the arena. But that’s what we want, another national championship.”
Griner was dominant in leading Baylor to the national championship. She had 26 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks to lead the Lady Bears to an easy 80-61 victory over Notre Dame in the championship game, capping an unparalleled 40-0 season for the Lady Bears.
“National championship, I wanted this because this is what our team wanted and this is what we promised coach when we got here,” Griner said.
Now she has a chance to join a rare group of superstars who have won two titles. While there has been talk that Griner could go to the WNBA next year, she’s emphatically said she will return for her senior season.
“All I know is I’m coming back, for sure I’m coming back,” Griner said. “I’m going to be right here. I’m waiting for our first team meeting to see what coach has for us.”