NEW ORLEANS -- If Cal's women's basketball team is puzzled by the defense Louisville runs in Sunday's national semifinals, the Bears might not be alone.
Louisville coach Jeff Walz, known for his creative game plans and switching defensive looks on a single possession, got confused himself in the Cardinals' Elite 8 win over Tennessee.
"At one point, my staff was sitting there yelling, 'What are we in? What are we in? And I turned around and said, 'I don't know,'" Walz said. "(I said), 'Guys, at this point in time (the players) are communicating with each other. And if we don't know what we're in, (the other team) obviously can't know either.'"
The Cardinals slowed down Brittney Griner in their Sweet 16 win over Baylor, then allowed just six points to Meighan Simmons, Tennessee's top player.
So, look for Walz and Louisville to get imaginative against Cal's Layshia Clarendon, who's used her mid-range game to average 22.5 points in the postseason and become one of the NCAA tournament's breakout stars.
"My whole plan when we go play somebody is, I'm trying to take away their best player," Walz said. "If somebody else can score 25, I'm going to live with it."
The Bears have seen their share of junk defenses aimed at slowing Clarendon or their post players.
"We've taken on many different shapes and sizes, speeds and agility," Cal forward Gennifer Brandon said. "It's really nothing new to Cal in the sense that we've played so many different types of defenses... It's a challenge, but it's going to be fun."
If the sisters were able to deliver one of the greatest upsets in the history of women's college basketball, their parents promised to get married after 28 years together.
"It was Easter Sunday and my dad's like, 'Anything can happen," ' Shoni Schimmel said. "So, my mom was like, 'All right, if you guys beat Baylor, I'll marry your dad.'"
Shoni Schimmel led an incredible 3-point shooting effort in the Cardinals' shocking upset, and her parents delivered on their promise a couple days later.
Brandon said she's ready to bounce back in the Final Four.
"It pretty much is put behind me already, thanks to my teammates," Brandon said.
Have fun and stay loose was Pitino's message.
Gottlieb has her fair share of well-wishers and advice-givers, too. Among them, Counting Crows front man Adam Duritz.