By Emma Baccellieri
A year after the bubble tournaments that exposed the gaps between the men’s and women’s competitions, advocates and NCAA administrators still disagree about what needs to change.
he NCAA has a list of everything that will be different about the Division I women’s basketball tournament this year. It’s the smallest entries on the list that are the most remarkable.
In a presentation given to media in early March, NCAA basketball leadership was sure to mention some changes that were almost comically specific: When the men get a gift box that includes a notebook, a sleeveless hoodie and a baseball cap, the women will now get a gift box that includes a notebook, a sleeveless hoodie and a baseball cap. And: The women will have a yogurt bar and a pasta station to match the men’s yogurt bar and pasta station. At the Final Four, the women will now have lounges that include a Ping-Pong table, three big-screen televisions and 28 pillows, just like the men at the Final Four.
The mention of that 28th pillow was as detailed as it was damning.