Paris: No title, no scholarship money

Updated: March 9, 2009, 3:38 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Oklahoma's Courtney Paris has not only guaranteed that the Sooners will win the NCAA women's basketball title, she's willing to put up her scholarship to back it up.

Paris
Paris

In a speech on senior night last week, Paris said that if the third-ranked Sooners don't win the title, she'll give back her scholarship money, valued at close to $64,000, according to a story in The Oklahoman.

"I have a passion for our fans and university, and I want to do something special," Paris said, according to The Oklahoman. "That's why I put my scholarship on the table. I meant what I said."

The Sooners are ranked third in the polls and are the top seed in the Big 12 tournament. Still, they face by most accounts a daunting challenge if their path to the national title is obstructed by No. 1 Connecticut. UConn is 31-0 overall and routed Oklahoma by 28 points back in November.

"I feel like we're not missing pieces," Paris said. "If we play hard, we execute, we are a great team that can win a national championship," Paris said. "If we don't do that, it won't be because we're not good enough.

"So when you're good enough and don't do something, then you have to take accountability for that and that's your own fault. We can win a national championship. If we don't, I'll feel like I didn't earn my scholarship."