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And Another Thing

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Punchin' Judy

... or, "Punchin' Brittney," as the case may be.

If you haven't heard about or seen it, Baylor's freshman sensation Brittney Griner was ejected from a game last night for punching Texas Tech's Jordan Barncastle with about nine minutes to play in a Big 12 women's game last night.

Griner's punishment from both her school and the Big 12 is still pending. But I'll tell you what it should be.

She should be suspended for the rest of this season, tournaments included.

Look. Women athletes have a hard enough time being taken as seriously as they should, which is to say as seriously as their male counterparts. Letting Griner up easy would only make that process more difficult.

Oregon running back LaGarrette Blount was suspended for eight games for punching a BYU player in Oregon's season-opening loss last fall, and that happened after the game was over. This happened during the game itself, which makes it an even more egregious offense.

So if you don't punish Griner every bit as severely, if not more so, what's the message? That we shouldn't apply the same standards to the women as to the men, because, after all, it's just women?

I don't think that's the message women's basketball icons like Pat Summitt, Kim Mulkey, Muffet McGraw and Vivian Stringer want to send at all. Their game deserves better -- even if better, in this case, is harsher.

Ben Smith's blog.

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