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Kathleen Clark throws her sneakers against the locker room wall in frustration after a tough loss. Iowa coach Lisa Bluder and UCLA coach Corey turned off the lights on their teams at halftime. The players are clear about which NCAA Tournament opponent they want to face. LSU coach Kim Mulkey told South Carolina coach Dawn Staley before the tip of the game on Jan. 25, “Girl, you can say whatever the hell you want, it doesn’t get any better than what you and I put on.” — floor! And never forget it!”

Filmmaker Christine Lapas has supported documentaries on Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo and the 1996 gold medal winning US women’s basketball team, among other projects, and one of her guiding principles as a filmmaker is not to soften a film. So, Staley told the Star Center Camila Cardoso, “D-— playing, Camila!” From L.S.U. When she’s not inspired by her stardom, that’s what you see.

“In general, when we look at any content about female athletes, it’s usually very flowery, watered down, they’re polite, they don’t swear, they’re all friends and it’s very vanilla,” Lapas said. “It’s not just that. It’s very intense and fun, and women are (as) authentic and uncensored as men. Hopefully, if people take anything away from this movie, it’s that these women are just as powerful as the men, and they want it just as bad as the men.

It’s an excerpt from the upcoming docuseries “Full Court Press,” which features the unprecedented access of Clark, Cardoso and UCLA’s Kiki Rice, directed by LaPas, as they embark on their respective journeys through the 2023-24 women’s college basketball season. The four-part series is produced by Peyton Manning Omaha Productions and Words & Pictures (Lapse’s employer) in association with ESPN. Episodes 1 and 2 will air on Saturdays from 1-3 pm ET, and episodes 3 and 4 on Sundays at the same time. All are on ABC and ESPN+. (Note: If you watch the ABC version, the plain language subtitles about the curse in the audio are turned off. The plain language will remain for the versions airing on ESPN+ and Hulu for a month starting Tuesday.)

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How does the story end? Well, you know this. Clark and Cardoso ended up meeting in the NCAA Tournament championship game in Cleveland, an 87-75 win over South Carolina that drew 18.9 million viewers on ABC.

Producer Hannah Bier spent 28 days with Clark filming the docs, a trip that took her across the country. By the time Bier began filming last October, Clarke was already a grown-up, but her stardom rose significantly when the final scenes were shot in Indianapolis.

“We talked on Zoom, but the first time we met Kathleen was around the Christmas party we filmed for Episode 1,” Bier said. “We’ve already established the relationship, and I feel like she’s in. She understands what we’re trying to do. She’s seen a series like this before, a group she follows and knows. She brought her own ideas to the series about some of the things she’s most excited about happening in her life.

For example, she suggested that we go to the movies with her family on Christmas Day. That’s one of the closest ways to spend time with someone because it’s when people want to hang out and not focus or think about work. She told us her family was just going to a (Kansas City) Chiefs game and that was a big deal for her. That ultimately stopped him from making the film, and telling her family’s story was a great point for us.

Through the Bears nest, we see Clark privately hug her family after losing to South Carolina in the title game. We see her before she plays in hotel rooms with teammates and reading motivational texts from Ted Lasso himself, actor Jason Sudeikis.

“Hey, I only have 10 minutes here for you, but we can do this,” Bier was nice. We’ve had good conversations all year about what we should handle and how we’re going to respect her boundaries and let her have a great senior year in college. You don’t get this access unless you build an insane amount of trust, and once we got to the tournament, I think they forgot we were there.

Caitlin Clarke And Camila Cardoso

Kaitlyn Clark and Camila Cardoso were the No. 1 and No. 3 picks, respectively, in the WNBA draft in April’s national title game. (Roy Rochelin/Getty Images for Empire State Realty Trust)

Including two trips to Brazil, following producer Suzy Beck Cardoso while producer Adrian Gallagher was loaded with rice. Rice takes the filmmakers into unexpected places, such as when she talks to her sports psychologist about big expectations. We also heard from Susan Rice, Kiki’s aunt, the former US ambassador to the United Nations.

Cardoso had a very interesting story. Beck traveled to Montes Claros and Belem in Brazil to interview Cardoso’s mother, Janet Soares, and her older sister, Jessica Silva. Cardoso came to America alone at age 15, speaking only Portuguese, and eventually became a WNBA lottery pick with big vision. Lapas told viewers that Cardoso pushed for a travel budget to see where she grew up.

It’s a bit of a rant, but it would have been stronger if the series had offered a third go-getter. Rice is a promising prospect but is still trying to find herself as a sophomore. The third subject of the surprising draft was LSU’s Angel Reese, Stanford’s Cameron Brink or someone else who you can imagine had a big program last year when she was leading the way for the WNBA draft like Clarke and Cardoso.

Clarke said Manning kept her from making the show — she has an executive producer credit — to do a “quarterback”-style show about women’s basketball.

“I think the biggest thing is you get to see what we do outside of basketball,” Clark said this week when asked about the film. “When you’re in college, you see us play on the court for two hours, and that’s all you get. You don’t get anything else. Now you get to see a little bit more of our lives.

The final episode will show each team’s NCAA Tournament run, and fans will get moments we didn’t see on television. For example, before the Iowa-LSU game in the Elite Eight, a matchup between Reese and Clark and somewhat of a media tsunami, Bluder was filmed in the locker room telling her team, “I’m warning you to get on social media or hear it. For that TVs — it’s happening right now,” after which Clarke advises her teammates to “scratch this.” The coaches of each of the featured players helped the filmmakers get unfiltered halftime talks and some practice time, and it’s a glimpse into the reality of a high-level college athlete.

“They let us in to see those vulnerable moments,” Lapas said. “They see it for what it is – a great opportunity for the growth of the game.”

Sports Media Podcast Episode 397 It has two writers The athletics Covering Women’s Basketball – Sabrina Merchant and Ben Pickman. They are also discussants. Athleticss Women’s Basketball Showcase Podcast.

In this podcast, Merchant and Pickman discuss what they’re seeing as far as local and national media coverage of the WNBA in 2024. What was the pre-season like; The upcoming WNBA national schedule; How do you think Clark, Brink, Cardoso, Reese and other rookies will do in Year 1? Las Vegas Aces and other dominance. You can subscribe to this podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify and more.

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(Excerpt from “Full Court Press” documentary premiere: Michael Hickey/Getty Images)