Since May of 2021, the NCAA has been making headlines for its unfair treatment of women competing in the NCAA March Madness championship, especially their male counterparts. During this time, they received a lot of scrutiny for the vast differences in the gym equipment, the Swag bags, and even the dinners given to the female athletes at the different championships.
They have made headlines once again as championship season for spring sports is coming to a close. The Women’s College World Series began last week, and the women competing have been receiving significantly worse treatment than the men competing at the College World Series for baseball. The NCAA explains the difference in treatment that male sports like football and basketball are more profitable than female sports. In this situation, however, that is not the case.
The Women's College World Series is one of the most profitable televised sporting events held by the NCAA. They received over a million viewers for the most recent Softball World Series, with almost the same number of viewers as the men’s. Despite that, the women that competed at this championship received significantly worse treatment than the men competing at the College World Series for baseball.
At the women's tournament, they were offered a stadium with no showers and far more limited seating than other world-class sporting events. The venue they were using in Oklahoma City could only accommodate 13,000 spectators, while the men’s location in Omaha would hold 24,000 spectators. This already sets the women's tournament behind as the men’s tournament can hold 9,000 more spectators and bring in more revenue.
Along with less seating, the women were given almost no days off in between days of competition, even competing twice in one day. This is a drastic difference from the men’s tournament, where the men received multiple days off between games and even had a massage day, golf outings, and celebratory dinners.
Many have defended the difference in treatment in the past based on the fact that men’s sports tend to bring in more revenue. Still, this situation further demonstrates how the NCAA gives men preferential treatment over women. This is just another example of how the NCAA gives men’s sports preferential treatment, not based on revenue, but out of general bias and favoritism towards male athletes over female athletes.