FULL DISCLOSURE: I served as the TCU women's basketball media relations director in the mid '90s for two seasons, and I've covered a number of women's basketball games as a sports journalist. Therefore, I have no problem in saying ...
There are not enough good women's basketball players to field a legit Top 25 let alone a 64-team post season NCAA tournament, and an additional WNIT field. Thanks to Title IX, however, the enormous waste of money that is the NCAA women's basketball tournament exists.
This is not some standard "Nobody cares" diatribe against women's basketball. People care, but the number just isn't very big. This is not some scream-fest against Title IX; a lot of good has been generated via this piece of legislation, namely a lot of young women play sports.
This is, however, a shot at those involved in women's basketball who feel their game measures with the men's. It does not. It's a different game, a different world, and the achievements should be evaluated accordingly.
The expectations and needs of a men's basketball coach at a Division I athletic department dwarf that of the women's coach. A men's team often needs to win in order for the entire athletic department to be successful. No women's program has such pressures.
Now take parity. Ten years ago coaches were thrilled with all of the parity in the women's game. It's a mirage. There is fraction of a decimal point of parity in the women's game, which is better than it has been.
Baylor is going to finish 40-0 this season. This will be the ninth time since 1976 that a women's program has finished the season undefeated, and the third time in the last four years. No men's team has gone undefeated since Indiana in 1975.
In what seems like it happens all the time, the eight finalists in the NCAA women's tournament are all one or two seeds.
In the women's game, Cinderalla is dressed as a three-seed. Pick your reason, but there simply aren't enough great players for true parity to exist yet.
This is why the achievements of Pat Summitt at Tennessee and the UConn winning streak need to be contained to just their sport. Summitt's career win total is laudatory, but it does not compare to that of Duke men's coach Mike Krzyzewski; not enough quality teams have existed in her tenure for her to lose. UConn's 90-game winning streak does not compare to UCLA's 88-game winning streak beyond the actual number.
Achievement is achievement, and nothing should diminish what Baylor does this season. But to say Baylor's undefeated season compares with Indiana's 32-0 more than three decades ago is ignorant.
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