Perhaps Tennessee coach Pat Summitt knew what lay ahead for the Volunteers and their peers in women's college basketball when she pulled the plug on the annual meeting with Connecticut in the spring of 2007.
Summitt has not gotten along with brash Huskies coach Geno Auriemma, but she never publicly explained exactly what it was that set her off.
It just might have been this: Auriemma, a fellow Naismith Hall of Famer, beat out Summitt in the recruiting battle over mega-talent Maya Moore, the 6-foot senior forward who hails from Lawrenceville, Ga.
Summitt's greatest fears have been realized. Behind the gifted Moore, top-ranked UConn is poised to set a new Division I basketball record, aiming for its 89th straight victory on Tuesday in a game against No. 22 Florida State (9-2) at the XL Center in Hartford, Conn. (7 p.m., ESPN2.)
John Wooden's UCLA men set the 88-game standard with their streak in 1971-74. The Huskies tied the mark Sunday with an 81-50 rout of Ohio State at Madison Square Garden.
Moore has mostly won with UConn. She experienced two losses as a freshman in 2008 when Tennessee won a second straight NCAA title.
Since then, Moore, who is averaging 24.2 points a game, and the Huskies have not lost.
"When you lose, it's easy motivation," Moore said before Sunday's game. "I think what we're doing is harder. You have to build that motivation from somewhere else."
Moore, likely to be the No. 1 pick in the WNBA draft, was the only collegian on the U.S. squad that Auriemma coached to a gold medal at the FIBA World Championships in the Czech Republic in September.
Causing a stir. Is the UConn women's achievement as impressive as that of the UCLA men in the '70s?
Auriemma shared his thoughts after Sunday's win.
"There wouldn't be this many people in the room if we were chasing a women's record," Auriemma said. "The reason everybody's having a heart attack the last four, five days is because a bunch of women are threatening to break a men's record. . . . All the miserable [louses] who follow men's basketball that don't want us to break the record are all here because they're [ticked].