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Baylor head coach Kim Mulkey diagnosed with Bell’s Palsy

Kim Mulkey

Baylor coach Kim Mulkey waves the cut net following the NCAA women’s college basketball tournament regional final against Tennessee, Monday, March 26, 2012, in Des Moines, Iowa. Baylor won 77-58. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)


The Baylor Bears will attempt to make history at the Women’s Final Four this weekend as they look to become the first 40-win team in the history of the sport.

But the Bears will have to deal with the additional adversity of head coach Kim Mulkey being diagnosed with Bell’s Palsy.

“I noticed while we were in Des Moines last week that my tongue felt strange. Yesterday I noticed when I smiled, only the left side of my mouth was working. Also, my right eye was drooping and I couldn’t hear properly out of my right ear. Our trainer, Alex Olson, examined me before practice and it was decided I needed immediate medical care. Instead of going to practice, I went to the doctor,” said Mulkey.

Bell’s Palsy can occur due to the disorder of a nerve that controls the muscles of the face, resulting in facial paralysis. According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, Bell’s Palsy affects 30,000 to 40,000 people per year.

Baylor takes on Stanford in the second semifinal on Sunday evening, and Mulkey will be on the sidelines leading the 38-0 Bears. Hopefully she has a speedy recovery.

Raphielle is also the assistant editor at and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.