Division I women’s basketball isn’t the only NCAA women’s sport that drew impressive fan engagement this year.
Women’s gymnastics drew more engagement on ESPN social platforms than any other women’s sport in 2022, the network announced, garnering 100 million impressions.
“#NCAAGym” was also trending throughout the afternoon.
The numbers are just the latest illustration of the sport’s popularity and continued growth.
The 2021 championship was broadcast on ABC, the network’s biggest stage. As a result, it averaged more than 800,000 viewers, a 510% increase from the previous championship in 2019 and a record for the sport.
Ratings haven’t been released for this year’s championship, which also aired on ABC.
The sport includes some of the most marketable college athletes, like Olympic gold medalist Sunisa Lee, who boasts 1.7 million Instagram followers.
The aggregate social media clout of the 2019-20 UCLA women’s gymnastics team could have been worth $1.25 million in name, image, and likeness earnings, one study found.
Brands, however, appear to have missed out on this market so far. Women’s gymnastics only makes up about 1.1% of reported NIL activities on Opendorse’s platforms.