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The Historic March Madness 2024


Women’s sports have always been excellent, but media coverage of them has famously flopped. This year’s NCAA March Madness basketball tournament gave new excitement and interest to women’s basketball and basketball as a whole.

It was a record-breaking season for women’s basketball. Caitlin Clark became the highest scorer in NCAA history, Dawn Staley became the first Black coach to win three D1 basketball titles, and viewership levels soared. The outstanding stars of the game excited fans including: Paige Bueckers for UConn, JuJu Watkins for USC, Angel Reese for LSU, Kamilla Cardoso for South Carolina, and the list goes on. 

The media has historically highlighted the men’s March Madness tournament, and it’s usually much easier to find and watch. But the tides are shifting and women’s basketball is finally getting the recognition it deserves. According to the NCAA, the viewership record for women’s basketball was broken three times over the course of the tournament, first by the historic Elite Eight LSU vs. Iowa game (12.3 million viewers), then by the Final Four UConn vs. Iowa matchup (14.2 million viewers), and finally by the championship South Carolina vs. Iowa.

The women’s final game, between Iowa and South Carolina, garnered 18.7 million viewers, surpassing the 14.8 million that tuned it for the men’s championship game. That single game was the most viewed women’s basketball game on record, along with the most viewed basketball game broadcasted on ESPN. According to ESPN, the women’s March Madness Championship game was also the most watched basketball game, college or professional, in 5 years. 

RAHS’ very own basketball players had thoughts about this monumental March Madness season. 

Sophomore Miles Stuart, who watched many men’s and women’s basketball games this year, acknowledged the recent hype for Clark.  Stuart said, “I think Caitlin Clark is one of the basketball Goats already.”

Players like Clark have been drafted by teams in the WNBA where they will continue to make waves and bring excitement to the sport of basketball.

Junior Natalie Horsman expressed joy in the spike in viewers of the women’s game. “People respect women’s basketball more now,” Horsman said. Heightened awareness and popularity of the sport has affected Horsman. “It’s fun that now when I ask people if they watched the game, they know that I’m talking about the women’s game… and people have watched it. It’s really exciting.”

This season has been about much more than the game itself; it has elevated women’s sports as a whole and inspired young girls and dreamers everywhere. 

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About the Contributors
Annika Wilkowske
Annika Wilkowske, Junior Editor
Hey everyone! My name is Annika and I’m a junior at RAHS. This is my second year writing for The Ville, and I’m excited to be the Arts and Entertainment Junior Editor! When I’m not running cross country or track, I like to sing, read, and hang out with friends.
Sophia Syverson
Sophia Syverson, Social Media Manager
I am a Junior Editor and Social Media Manager, and this is my second year writing for The Ville. I am a diver, nordic skier, and run track and field! I am a junior this year, and my favorite things to report on are sports and soft news.

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