NCAA Makes Improvements For Women’s Tournament
The workout areas at the women’s NCAA Basketball Tournament have received an upgrade, thanks to an outcry of public backlash.
The entire women’s tournament is being played in San Antonio, while the men’s tournament is being held in Indianapolis.
The NCAA took great lengths to create an expansive weight room for men’s college basketball teams in Indianapolis, but the same was not done in San Antonio. Lack of space was one of the given reasons for the disparity, but there was apparently enough space to make some upgrades.
Teams are using the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center for practices during the NCAA Tournament, and that is where the new upgraded workout facility is located. New equipment was delivered over the weekend, and there is also exercise equipment available along the practice courts in the convention center.
The National Collegiate Players’ Association was one of the groups that helped get the women’s basketball teams the equipment that was needed and deserved. The National Association of Basketball Coaches also issued a statement on Saturday morning, calling for fair treatment of the women’s teams.
Pictures posted on social media sites showed plenty of empty space at the Convention Center, while the men’s weight room area was full of state-of-the-art equipment. The NCAA claimed that the empty space was a holding area for teams getting ready to practice, but that argument didn’t sit well with players and coaches.
Dick’s Sporting Goods made a plea to the NCAA over the weekend to allow them to deliver equipment to San Antonio immediately. It’s unclear what company the NCAA used to get the new machines at the site, but it was done so in short order.
The NCAA originally planned to construct a weight room after the Sweet 16 field was set, which was another decision that was called into question.
This year’s men’s March Madness is set to be the busiest ever for sportsbooks and will continue the current upward trend for sports betting in the US.
Gavitt Apologizes After Backlash
Before the upgrades were made to the workout areas at the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament, Dan Gavitt issued an apology to the media. Gavitt is the NCAA vice president and in charge of all things college basketball.
The apology came on Friday morning during a conference call with the media, and he acknowledged that the NCAA fell short. Gavitt went so far as to take the blame for the different treatment of the men’s and women’s tournament set up, but others at the NCAA were also to blame.
This apology came after an outpouring of criticism on social media that started with a simple video made by a women’s college basketball player. That video quickly caught the attention of professional athletes, both men and women.
Some of the top coaches in the sport of women’s college basketball acknowledged the gap between the men’s and women’s game prior to the NCAA Tournament tipping off this weekend. Connecticut head coach Geno Auriemma even brought up the fact that different types of COVID-19 tests were being administered.
There were some excuses that were initially made by Gavitt and the other NCAA executives, but eventually, the organization took full responsibility.
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