Women’s college basketball has seen exponential growth this past season and now the NCAA wants to expand on the evolution. The NCAA has announced a new strategic plan that will enhance the progress of women’s basketball in college.
After engaging with stakeholders, this approach will guide NCAA Division I, II, and III in association with other key backers to fulfill the shared look of the future of the sport. In theory, this will help guide decision-making in women’s basketball for all three NCAA divisions through 2024.
In a recorded statement, NCAA vice president of women’s basketball Lyn Holzman said, “Women’s college basketball just experienced a phenomenal and exhilarating postseason with the 2019 NCAA Division I Women’s Final Four and the Division II and III national championships. Playing off these successes, we are excited to be officially rolling out our new game plan for the next five years.”
With the development assistance from partners, the new vision of the NCAA for women’s basketball is to:
- Unify and grow the women’s basketball community
- Empower student-athletes to reach their full potential
- Celebrate and elevate the game
- Create an inspiring experience for all involved
All in all, this is a great opportunity for the NCAA to help expand and grow the game to new heights.
For instance, the Division I Women’s Final Four saw vast improvements in viewership this season. The three-game attendance for the Final Four was 40,189 attendees. All three games sold out. Furthermore, in total, nearly 275,000 people attended the Big Dance, ranking the 2019 NCAA Tournament eight all-time.
But wait, there’s more. 3.69 million people watched the national championship game on ESPN. A positively staggering 3.64 million viewers watched the national semifinal games.
Maybe as a partial reaction to the growth in spite of sometimes limited marketing, the NCAA is continuing the advancement of women’s basketball. This idea of expansion is critical. Over the next five years, the Steering committee will be overseeing the implementation of this design for the next five years.
Through the work of this plan, women’s basketball can continue grow through teamwork, inclusion, passion, excellence and integrity. Now, that being said, it’s imperative they honor the sport and stay committed to the vision of empowering women’s basketball.
“Values drive behavior and sharing these values across all of NCAA women’s basketball is important,” said Holzman in the recorded statement. “As we work to grow this sport, we encourage others to join us in being champions for women’s basketball by getting involved as the NCAA rolls out our action plans and priorities later this summer.”
This blueprint is a necessity to increase what is already a great sport. Programs are beginning to see the byproduct of the work they put in year in and year out. Nonetheless, the NCAA is ready to resume on the idea of making women’s basketball better every year.
Of course, this is seen as embracing the sport and continuing to drive the thought of making it better as a whole. After all, women’s basketball is going to keep pushing upward and this plan is adding more fuel to the sport’s ascension.
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