SheBelieves roster is out, Korbin’s controversy, but first – the court at the Portland Regional was messed up!

For Soccer Monday, Annie Peterson touches on the SheBelieves roster and Korbin Albert, but first - the NCAA court fiasco!

Before we go into anything soccer related, let’s just dip our toes into the women’s NCAA Tournament for a bit. It’s what I’ve been doing for the past two weeks and all I can say is – oh, my God!

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There were two different 3-point lines on the court for the Portland Regional.

I don’t think I can properly describe my astonishment in writing. Stunned doesn’t quiet do it. It was way more than shock. Horrified, maybe? How does this happen?

We all got an inking of what was going on about 20 minutes before NC State and Texas tipped off in the Elite 8 competition. Longhorns coach Vic Schaefer was on the court as the Wolfpack warmed up around him, intently looking down at the floor. Then, he started measuring out the distance between the baseline and the arc with his feet.

He went down and looked at the floor on the other side. Something was up.

After NC State coach Wes Moore and game officials were conferred with, out came a suited NCAA staffer with a measuring tape. Later, Schaefer said the discrepancy between the two lines was “about a foot.” Later it was clarified as nine inches.

Again, how does this happen?

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This was supposed to be the defining for women’s college hoops, with Caitlin and JuJu and Angel and all the other players that fans can recognize without their last names.

Instead, a Utah team gets pushed off to Coeur d’Alene, which has a history of racism issues. A referee had a conflict of interest that didn’t get addressed until the middle of a game. And don’t even get me started on the nose ring thing – which would have never been a thing if there were adults in the room.

And now, the court. Seriously, NCAA. You need to try way harder at staying out of your own damn way.

The result of all this is that I’ve been busy, and that continues today. Tonight, UConn plays USC in another Elite 8 competition. That means that, once again, we’re going to be light on the soccer content. Next week will be better, I promise!

But, we do have some updates on the women’s soccer front. Korbin Albert, who is becoming a regular on the national team, has drawn widespread criticism over some of her social media posts and re-posts, both on TikTok and Instagram. She posted posted a part of a sermon that attacked being gay and “feeling transgender.” She also portrayed her family proclaiming their pronouns to be USA. And she apparently liked an upsetting Instagram post that took delight in Megan Rapinoe’s injury in her final match last year.

Several players reposted a statement that Rapinoe put on her Instagram story:

“For people who want to hide behind “my beliefs,” I would just ask one question: are you making making any type of space safer, more inclusive, more whole, any semblance of better, bringing the best out of anyone? …. because if you aren’t, all you believe in is hate. And kids are literally killing themselves because of this hate.”

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Albert, who plays for Paris Saint-Germain, issued an apology.

“I truly believe that everyone should feel safe and respected everywhere and on all playing fields. I know my actions have not lived up to that and for that I sincerely apologize.”

Albert is on the US roster for the SheBelieves Cup which starts later this week. But for better news from the roster: both Mallory Swanson and Catarina Macario are back! And just in time for the Olympics. The roster also welcome 16-year old Lily Yohannes, a midfielder who plays for Dutch club Ajax. Here’s my story on the roster.

Now, this was heartbreaking:

Anyway, on to the links:

Me on Sophia Smith signing her contract extension

ESPN’s NWSL Power Rankings

Jackie Gutierrez wrote about how the NWSL has boosted its growth, for the Equalizer

The Athletic took a look at NWSL team valuations

ESPN’s Jeff Kassouf looked at the biggest NWSL snubs for the national team

Gutted for Midge Purce. Jenna Tonelli writes about it for the Equalizer

America First Credit Union responds to the Royals’ jersey concerns

Susie Rantz with her NWSL Roundup from Saturday for AP

Forbes with a cool story on 10 women who changed soccer

Oh hey, the Rose Bowl will host the semis and final matches in the 2028 Olympics

Here’s what Mallory Swanson and company had to say following the Red Stars’ 1-1 draw on the road against the Orlando Pride. And, although we all like to overanalyze these games, Lorne Donaldson is right. It’s early.


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Written by Annie Peterson