WOMEN’S BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT – MARCH 23
By Leo Haggerty
ON TO THE SWEET 16
Unlike the NCAA, who just talks about equality but doesn’t back it up with actions as the obvious discrepancies in the food and weight room along with the gift bags indicated, we at Its Sports Magazine do believe and practice equality. We give both the Men’s and Women’s Basketball programs equal space within our magazine.
Now, before you get all outraged over the fact that I only posted a Men’s bracket and not a Women’s one, there are two extremely good and viable reasons for that. The first is that the major networks cover practically all of the teams that make the field of 68 for the Men’s Tournament at some time during the season. That’s not the case for the Women’s side of the draw where very few contests are covered nationally.
Don’t throw the networks under the bus because of the lack of coverage for this reason. The difference in the Men’s brackets between the 1 seed and the 16 seed is negligible. The bottom line is if you’re making shots the David at 16 can take down the Goliath at 1 and that’s not just a theory. Let me take you back to 2018 when hyphenated University of Maryland-Baltimore County soundly beat top seed Virginia 74-54.
March Madness has continued that trend. As you saw in my article yesterday, four double digit seeds are still dancing along with a 7th and an 8th. Right now, those upsets don’t exist in the women’s bracket.
Sadly, there is such a monumental disparity between the top seeds and the bottom ones in the women’s tournament. To take it even farther, the gap between the single digit seeds and the double digit ones are enormous and here’s what I’m basing that upon.
Going into the women’s Sweet 16 round this weekend, all eight one and two seeds are still alive. The highest seeds still playing are three six seeds being Michigan and Oregon and Texas. The lack of parity in the women’s side is alarming to say the least.
The fact of the matter is that you can fill in the four number one seeds on the Final Four line before the Women’s tournament even begins and at least two of them will be there. That just the way it is right now in women’s collegiate game.
With that being said, don’t be shocked if 1 seeds Connecticut and North Carolina State plus Stanford along with South Carolina are going at it for the title. That may be good for watching but, it’s my belief, that it’s bad for women’s basketball as a whole because the rich just get richer.
I’ll update again next week to see if I’m right or wrong on this one. I got a strong feeling that I’ll be right.