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Thursday, September 4, 2014


- WBCA board takes positions on variety of issues


WBCA Executive Director Danielle Donehew has sent a memorandum to the chairs of several collegiate committees informing them of the positions taken by the WBCA Board of Directors on the association’s behalf on the following issues. The WBCA:

· Supports a proposal to consolidate existing NCAA women’s basketball committees into a new substructure with a single Women’s Basketball Oversight Committee to more efficiently govern the sport.

· Supports the decision to play NCAA DI regional tournaments at neutral sites beginning in 2015.

· Presently cannot support the concept of holding NCAA DI Women’s and Men’s Final Fours together in the same city without more information. The WBCA instead prefers to play the Women’s Final Four on a different weekend.

· Prefers decreasing the size of the official traveling party instead of reducing the amount of the traveling party’s per diem for preliminary rounds in the NCAA DI tournament if there becomes a need to reduce travel expenses.

· Supports study of four 10-minute quarters rather than two 20-minute halves.

· Supports study of no reset on the 10-second backcourt count when there is a new throw-in and there is no reset on the shot clock.

· Supports study of the option to advance the ball to the frontcourt following a timeout in the last minute of the game (WNBA rule).

· Supports study of implementation of a five-seconds-closely-guarded-on-the-dribble rule in the frontcourt.

· Does not support allowing the opposing coach to select a free-throw shooter from the remaining four players on the floor when the player who was fouled is injured and cannot shoot.

· Takes no position on widening the free-throw lane as it is unclear as to how this would benefit the women’s game.

Let's take a  look at a few of these and discuss:

-Consolidation is probably a good idea.  Consistency and uniformity never hurts.
-A neutral site for the regionals does make sense...allowing for the possibility of more upsets and increased ticket sales from the qualifying teams. You can rest assured, though...that these "neutral sites" will be picked in four locations near Storrs, Waco, Knoxville, South Bend...maybe Louisville or Lexington and somewhere in California near Palo Alto. . .gotta make the powerhouse programs happy and create short trips for the probable participants.

-Staying away from the same city for the men's and women's tournament could be helpful...but the idea of a different weekend for the two Final Fours is an idea I am opposed to. Especially if a school has two teams in the Final Four. It would have been great to have both the UofL men's team and women's team in Atlanta in 2013. That drive back-and-forth was tedious from all accounts.
-No opinion on the reduction of a traveling party. The major schools can afford it and when was the last time a mid-major cracked the Final Four?

-We're definitely AGAINST the idea of going to four quarters instead of two halves. It presents the possible opportunity for even more TV timeouts...and there's nothing worse than those if you're stuck at home having to watch your favorite team.

-I like the idea of the five-seconds-closely-guarded-on the-dribble rule in the frontcourt. It could drag more teams out of a lay-back zone and create more inside play.

-A coach should be allowed to choose whoever they want to take free-throws for an injured player. Whoever is substituting is fine....or if you have a good player on the court...why not let them try the free ones. Got an ace free-throw shooter on the bench? Bring her in but hope she can play defense for a few minutes as well.

-Widening the lane is a bad idea. What possible good could it accomplish?

In retrospect...does the women's game really need changing? The 10 second clock for crossing the timeline was needed....but a lot of these rules proposed for discussion seem to be tailoring the NCAA game to the WNBA, FIBA or Euroball. Sometimes, you can add too much seasoning to the soup...Is women's college basketball in need of more changes?

You tell me.




  1. I'd like to see the fouls increased to six before a player has to sit. I'd be in favor of a four quarter format. Keep the two FINAL FOURS on same weekends. The same city would be great. Regionals? Have one in Tampa each and every year. Purely for selfish reasons on that last suggestion. LOL

    -the real Joe Hill

    1. I have to take a pass on both tournaments in same city during the same weekend would create an even more difficult time to obtain hotel rooms near the playing facility and I presume the surcharges already in effect for hotels during events would jump even higher.

      I fear that many of the women's supporters would be priced out of downtown hotels and the convenience of shuttle buses.

      In the alternative, I would favor the DII and DIII finals being held in conjunction with each DI tournaments. This would Increase attendance at each of the games and significantly reduce cost for the DII and DIII schools.

  2. Here is how you do regional assignments. You open it up to a corporate sponsorship tie in deal. If Ford and UPS want to spend the promotional dollars, have one in Louisville.Coke and Turner Broadcasting ready to pay? Go to Atlanta. Disney World has money. Let them bid on a Orlando location. It's a great way to fund NCAA WBB and no one pays attention anyway. Seriously, do you refer to it as the Fed EX Orange Bowl in normal conversation or just the Orange Bowl? WHo sponsors the Rose Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Motor City Bowl and does the average fan even care?

    If corporations want to feed the bank account, let them have at it.

    Curtis Franklin

  3. These recommendations by Donehew are pretty much a line-by-line response to Val Ackerman's NCAA white paper of a year or two ago relative to the challenges facing women's basketball. No original ideas here really, just agreement or not with Ackerman's original recommendations.

    Of course Ackerman's original effort was prompted by the fact that although WCBB is by far the most popular women's collegiate sport it continues to lose stunning amounts of money an almost every university. This includes U of L and UConn, both of which lose over a million dollars per year in their WBB programs.

    They've been trying to figure out how to get folks to be willing to attend AND pay reasonable ticket prices for WCBB from the beginning. Nothing new here. Same problem in the WNBA except worse because expenses actually do matter in a for-profit business like the W.

    Title IV created a WCBB institution in our universities not tied to the financial viability of the programs but to equal opportunity. That's great, but there has never been a core of fans willing to pay enough to make the programs self sufficient.

    Most the originally recommendations were driven by the fact that even forty years after Title IX kicked in WCBB makes zero financial sense for most universities and will eventually lead to significant changes.

    Look no further than Tennessee's recent dismantling of the women's side of their athletic department to understand the financial ramifications of creating an infrastructure that is financially unsupportable. It may make it through the good times but when the crunch comes cuts will follow.

    I enjoy watching WCBB but I'm not interested in paying anything remotely close to the price of men's tickets to watch it. Same goes for the WNBA. I'll pay fifteen bucks to watch most games on the W's Live Access service on the web. That's a great value. That said after paying ten bucks a month to access some of the UofL's women's game last year I probably won't do it again this season. I might just because I want to see how Jude does but other than that not so much. Coverage was poor and inconsistent.

    1. CardsTV jumping to $99 this year for programming that is pretty lame compared to the quality of the WNBA broadcasts. Supposedly it now allows multi media reception and "99" other schools. Quite a price when all I want to do to watch a few of the non broadcast UL women's sports home games as I did not ask to see 99 other schools.

    2. The dirty secret for decades has been that the majority of men's team were in the red for decades and many still are. To highlight the women's financial issues without knowing the history of many men's teams is a diservice to the women. I think that time will correct some of the women's attendance and sponsorship issues.

      Who here remembers the many years where millions and millions of dollars spent by UL on football? UL staying the course with football, and not canceling the sport as was once discussed, seems to have worked out pretty well.

    3. There is no "dirty secret". Women's collegiate sports don't push positive cash flow. Period. The financing of athletic depts is primarily from TV contracts, direct contributions and student fees. UofL men's basketball receives something in the area of 29 million dollars annually in direct contributions. This is the most in the nation for men's basketball. UofL WBB receives almost nothing in direct contributions. That said the women get the same facilities, uniforms etc as the men. That's all fine but it isn't sustainable.

      Louisville is an exception to the rule. Generally football drives the most revenue to the big college programs. If anyone is interested they should check out a female attorney by the name of Kristi Dosh. She is an ESPN Sports Business Reporter and has analyzed the financial side of college sports. She has a blog and a weekly podcast that discusses those types of issues. Also wrote a book titled "Saturday Millionaires" that discusses college sports financing including the impact of Title IX. Smart lady. The best I've found to date that seems to understand all of the issues.

    4. I agree. It's pretty hard to sign up for CardsTV after getting the entire WNBA season for fifteen bucks. The value just isn't there.

  4. Just, please, for the love of all that is holy, *don't* adopt the advance to the front-court after a time-out rule. That's just *awful*. Even worse than alternative possession on tie-ups, which I'm still bitter about.


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