Thursday, April 21, 2011

We're not the only ones talking about it

What Others are Saying

It has become evident to us, with even more research, that the men’s and women’s college basketball scene are those of two different worlds that receive two totally different rates of coverage and support.  We aren’t the only ones that noticed it either, because the topic was a popular blog post trend and letter-to-the-editor type response during the NCAA 2011 tournament.

Many other bloggers have noticed the difference between men’s and women’s college basketball, whether it’s the fan base, the media coverage, or the overall popularity of the sport.
Most of the blogs and responses we found for today’s post were about women’s college basketball, and how a select group of bloggers are seeing what we see as far as media and overall support.  Here’s what the people are saying:

The first blog we came across during research was written by a female blogger on her page “Not a Barbie Girl.” The title of her article was “I Don’t Watch Women’s College Basketball,” which gave her opinion about the sport.  Just as we’ve found in our research, this blogger noted, “the audience disparity for men’s and women’s college basketball is disappointing,” but then went on to say that she unfortunately contributed to this statistic because she didn’t watch women’s college basketball.  She mentions that the men’s league gets more attention, but makes a call for action at the end of her post for everyone to start supporting the women’s league.

Another post we found was again written by a female blogger on her page “Youth Noise,” in her post, “Women’s College Basketball, For the birds?” This blogger takes a stance supporting women’s college basketball, defending against those that complain about the sport.  She makes a few points, including if the viewer doesn’t like women’s basketball, they can change the channel, and to remember that the women’s teams generally play for the love of the game in their hearts, and not to impress a large audience.  She also took a stab at the “haters” (mostly males) and said they should stop complaining because they probably couldn’t even match skill levels with these young female ball players.  In the end, she also makes a call for action to recognize the trials and tribulations female athletes have endured, and for society to lessen the gap between support for men’s and women’s sports.

We then found a post written by a male blogger in “Jack’s Blog” post titled “The Good and Bad of Women’s College Basketball.” We noticed many of the blogs were written by females and the public feedback began looking skewed, until we found the men supporting women’s sports.  This blog post was in full support of women having the right to play and the need for more equality in college basketball.  He wrote that equality is the main thing that these women’s teams are looking for, and they deserve it.  It’s not about the men’s team versus the women’s team in any regards, but the need for women to be recognized just as well as men.

The final blog post we found to stand out was written by another male in “MyFDL,” in his blog post, “Women’s College Basketball, Well Worth Watching.” This guy started out admitting that despite all his sports pals dismissing the idea of women’s basketball as a legitimate contender for time worth spent watching sports, he still supported the women’s teams.  He then mentioned that the 2011 NCAA championships were very opposite as far as quality of the game, and picked the women’s game over the men’s game for entertainment and interest.  He wasn’t afraid to admit that women’s sports can be just as, if not more, interesting and well played as men’s sports.  “If you enjoy both the agony of defeat and the thrill of victory that comes with sports, why not avail yourself to the whole spectrum of it, both men’s and women’s athletic competition? To do otherwise is to simply cheat yourself out of the thrills and excitement of athletic competition that women’s sports now provides on a level that is in many ways equal to and sometimes superior to that of men’s sports.”  

So there you have it.  The difference in support for women’s college basketball versus men’s college basketball is duly recognized by many people, and they’re speaking out about it.  The problem is known; we can now just hope to inform all the others that don’t recognize this need for equal coverage and support.
“Know yourself. Never forget where you came from,
and reach back to help someone else come forward too.” 
- Alpha Alexander, co-founder of the Black Women in Sports Foundation

“Never underestimate the heart of a champion.”- Rudy Tomjanovich

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