Before the WNBA, the modern pioneers of women’s basketball played in mostly empty areas with little hope of there being much of a future in the sport once their four years of eligibility were used up.
I came across some photos I took during a tournament in late November 1985 at the University of Maryland that included then top ranked USC, and Maryland, then a top ten team. Even the likes of future hall-of-famer Cheryl Miller couldn’t fill Cole Field House, but it was better than most could do. (Note, these are raw images — I didn’t take the time to fiddle with them.)
[You need to imagine the images...this was at least three web sites ago. Sorry. --CJ]
In the future, I’ll post some photos from Maryland basketball’s golden age (i.e. before Len Bias’ death shook Maryland athletics) and you’ll see that the normal crowd was a bit less than what Cheryl Miller could draw. (In case you are wondering, I didn’t tout the draw of Cynthia Cooper becuase at the time she wasn’t a draw. As luck would have it, with a star like Cheryl Miller on her team, she was just one of the supporting players. And now, she’s the head coach of the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury in the wake of Cheryl Miller quitting as head coach. You gotta love life’s little ironies.)