At the time, I think most wrote the story off as "well, that's strange" and didn't really think much of it. I'm not saying Mulkey was asking to be patted on the butt, but she was wearing leather pants and didn't seem upset by it. It was just one of those weird things that happens and nobody really cares much about because it's not a big deal. Or at least it doesn't seem like a big deal.
Who could have known that the truth of the situation was as weird as it turned out to be? According to Auriemma:
"She was staring at my butt and she was commenting on it and I said, ‘Really? How about yours?’ and she went, `Yeah, look at it,’ and I went (slap), I’ll teach you a lesson,’’ Auriemma said, jokingly. `And then she started talking about how she only dated Italians her whole life and that she wanted me to set her up with some Italians and I said `The Italians I send to see you aren’t going to date you.’ We’ve had a long and great relationship since, gosh, she was an assistant at Louisiana Tech. It goes back a long ways.
"She’s just a big pain in the butt. That’s all there is to it.’’
So we've gone from playful, somewhat inexplicable pre-game horseplay to ... aggressive, racially-tinged foreplay? I honestly don't have words for what I'm thinking right now, so I'll leave it to Mr. Chan.
That about sums it up.