• Loading stock data...
Friday, July 12, 2024

Discussions Progress On Alternate Final Four Scheduling Model

  • The NCAA is advancing discussions on holding the men's and women's Final Fours on separate weekends.
  • The proposal was born out of recommendations for gender equity enhancements.
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The NCAA is progressing on discussions to move the Division I Final Fours to separate weekends as it receives more stakeholder feedback, according to minutes from October NCAA meetings.

An NCAA spokesperson told Front Office Sports there is no formal proposal “at this time.” But the meeting minutes said there have been “key discussions during the recent membership input session,” and that conversations are being elevated through the labyrinth of NCAA committees.

The idea is part of an ongoing movement to improve gender equity in women’s basketball. The NCAA has painted it as an alternative to combining the Final Fours — a recommendation made by a 2021 gender equity report.

Holding them in the same city and on the same weekend was ultimately controversial — only 55% of Division I women’s coaches supported it in a Women’s Basketball Coaches Association survey. The NCAA pushed the idea off until at least 2031.

The potential benefit of alternate weekends, according to the meeting minutes, would be to “provide the opportunity for the growth of the sport and the championship.”

Gender Equity Fuels Debate Over Moving Final Fours to Same City

The NCAA has traditionally hosted Final Fours in different cities, but that…
April 4, 2022

Media members, fans, and college sports executives perennially have to choose which Final Four to attend — putting the women’s tournament at a significant disadvantage. 

Big East Commissioner Val Ackerman, a longtime proponent of combining the events, traveled back and forth to both last year. She told Front Office Sports the experience was extremely grueling.

Moving the women’s Final Four could alleviate this issue — but it presents other scheduling concerns, like starting the entire women’s tournament one week earlier or pitting the Final Four up against The Masters.

The move wouldn’t necessarily assuage other equity concerns, like the sponsorship conundrum.

The Battle for Equity in NCAA Basketball

The NCAA has made many changes to improve equity in Division I…
March 18, 2022

The NCAA’s sponsorship agreement is currently held by CBS/Warner Bros. Discovery — who only own media rights to the men’s tournament. The agreement does not allow sponsors to buy a la carte deals — they have to buy into men’s basketball if they want to endorse any other sport. For example, a feminine care company would have to buy a D-I men’s basketball sponsorship in order to buy a women’s tournament sponsorship.

Given that this agreement runs until 2032, the gender equity report suggested the NCAA hold the events together so sponsorship resources could be shared. 

But the NCAA still isn’t sold on any of that logic — pursuing the alternative weekend concept instead.

Linkedin
Whatsapp
Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read

The Mississippi Department of Human Services on Monday sued retired NFL quarterback Brett Favre along with several other people and businesses to try to recover millions of misspent welfare dollars that were intended to help some of the poorest people in the U.S.

Judge in Mississippi Welfare Case Boots Brett Favre’s Lead Lawyer

The judge wrote he had a ‘pattern and practice of delicate deception.’

‘Where’s truTV?’ March Madness Channel Is Now TNT Sports’ New Star

Warner Bros. Discovery will make its sports emphasis on truTV ‘even more pronounced and consistent.’

Big 12’s New Era Kicks Off: Expansion, Private Equity, and Global Ambitions

The new 16-team conference is holding media days in Las Vegas.
Sponsored

TopSpin 2K25 Brings the Legends of Tennis to Your Living Room

2K sports is reviving a classic with TopSpin 2K25.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

Warner Bros. Discovery Faces Final Decision on NBA Rights

0:00

Featured Today

NFLPA Report Cards Have Become the ‘Talk of the Locker Room’ Across..

NFLPA report cards have become the ‘talk of the locker room.’
July 7, 2024

The New College Sports Insiders Are Graphic Designers

Joe Tipton and Hayes Fawcett have become premier news-breakers on social media.
Oct 27, 2023; Sacramento, California, USA; A general of the Sacramento Kings logo on the court before the game against the Golden State Warriors at Golden 1 Center.
July 6, 2024

How Sports Went From Private Equity Punchline to Coveted Asset Class

Once an industry punchline, sports are now a coveted asset class.
July 2, 2024

Willie Mays’s Humility Was Key to His Genius

Mays took heat from all sides, and handled it his own way.

Pac-12 Media Days Evolve Into a Cocktail Party at the Bellagio

The two-team ‘zombie conference’ is still hosting a football media day.
July 8, 2024

Dan Hurley Finally Has New UConn Deal After Dramatic Offseason

Hurley is now the second-highest-paid coach in college basketball. 
July 9, 2024

Arch Manning Will Be in EA’s ‘College Football 25’ After All

The NCAA’s most famous backup had previously opted out.
Sponsored

TopSpin 2K25 Brings the Legends of Tennis to Your Living Room

2K sports is reviving a classic with TopSpin 2K25.
July 2, 2024

Navigating College Football’s 2024 Realignment Landscape: What’s Next?

Conferences are officially adding schools this summer.
April 13, 2024; Columbus, Ohio, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes wide receiver Emeka Egbuka (2) catches a pass for the scarlet team while defended by cornerback Jordan Hancock (7) of the grey team during the first half of the LifeSports Spring Game at Ohio Stadium on Saturday.
July 1, 2024

As NIL Turns Three, Collectives and Football Still Control the Industry

Collectives dominate NIL, and football makes up most of collective budgets.
June 30, 2024

As Realignment Becomes Official, the Power 5 Era Is Over

It’s yet another indicator that college sports have become more commercialized.
June 26, 2024

College World Series Still Riding High Despite Just Missing Records

Viewership on ESPN platforms averaged 1.56 million.