By Cassandra Negley
“We didn’t have the time to do this.”
It’s one simple line that’s felt throughout the entirety of a 118-page gender equity review of the NCAA’s approach to the men’s and women’s basketball championships. It’s used 19 pages in to explain the weight room controversy that led the organization here in the first place and is felt often in the report released Tuesday by Kaplan Hecker & Fink LLP.
The Division I Women’s Basketball Committee didn’t have time to compare PowerPoint presentations of evolving plans for the men’s basketball tournament to the ones they were developing for the women’s. Nor did anyone have time to look at the manuals side-by-side to catch disparities. The women’s committee was already a month behind the men’s committee on planning a tournament during the pandemic because of NCAA obstacles, the report details. And all of this, in the NCAA’s organization structure and unspoken guidelines, fell on the women’s committee instead of the men’s. Because of course it did.