NCAA's Committee on Women's Athletics Wants Amenity Disparity Investigated

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMarch 19, 2021

FILE - In this March 18, 2015, file photo, the NCAA logo is displayed at center court as work continues at The Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, for the NCAA college basketball tournament. The NCAA took a significant step toward allowing all Division I athletes to transfer one time without sitting out a season of competition. A plan to change the waiver process is expected to be presented to the Division I Council in April, 2020. If adopted, new criteria would go into effect for the 2020-21 academic year and be a boon for athletes in high-profile sports such as football and men's and women's basketball. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)
Keith Srakocic/Associated Press

Amid significant disparities in the amenities provided to the women's basketball teams participating in the NCAA tournament compared to the men's teams, the NCAA's committee on women's athletics is demanding an investigation into the situation.

Per the Washington Post's Molly Hensley, committee chair Suzette McQueen sent an email to NCAA president Mark Emmert stating the committee's "shock and disappointment over the disparate treatment of our women student-athletes participating in the NCAA Division I Basketball Tournament and the inequitable availability of strength training facilities":

Molly Hensley-Clancy @mollyhc

NEW: The NCAA's committee on women's athletics sent a letter to NCAA president Mark Emmert today demanding an independent investigation into disparities at the basketball tournaments. The situation "sets women's college athletics back across the country," the letter says. https://t.co/MJKzPNGiML

The training facilities generated controversy after Stanford performance coach Ali Kershner posted an image on Instagram showing the differences in amenities for the men's and women's teams:

Chantel Jennings @ChantelJennings

Stanford sports performance coach Ali Kerschner posted this to Instagram earlier today, comparing the men's and women's facilities in their respective bubbles. Women's teams get six sets of dumbbells, yoga mats and a single stationary bike until the Sweet 16... https://t.co/hOgdJfHXhh

Oregon forward Sedona Prince provided another look at the disparity between the facilities:

Sedona Prince @sedonaprince_

Let me put it on Twitter too cause this needs the attention https://t.co/t0DWKL2YHR

NCAA vice president of women's basketball Lynn Holzman said in a statement on Thursday the women's amenities were limited "in part" due to limited space in the facilities where teams are staying and practicing. 

Holzman added the NCAA's "original plan" was to increase the workout area space later in the tournament as teams get eliminated, but it is now "actively working to enhance existing resources."

The 2021 NCAA women's basketball tournament is being held in San Antonio, Austin and San Marcos, Texas. It is scheduled to begin on March 21 and run through April 4.