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To the men and women complaining about the inequity regarding women’s sports, the answer lies in the stands.

They’re not full.

Until that changes, the fight will remain a fight even it it’s not right.

And whether you know it or not, you — the spectator — are a big reason why the fight remains.

NBA All-Star Draymond Green, who will one day replace Charles Barkley as the NBA’s most popular studio TV analyst, didn’t make any friends when he alienated U.S. women’s soccer star Megan Rapinoe.

On March 27, Green Tweeted at several WNBA stars: “As long as y’all make the argument about pay, while the revenue stays the same… They will continue to point at the revenue not being high enough to cover bigger salaries. While that is true in damn near every business, how do we take that card out of their pockets?

“That’s the key to changing the pay. There’s no argument for lack of revenue, unless… You make those that say they stand for women actually stand up.”

Rapinoe, who is preparing to play in the Summer Olympics for the USWNT, crushed Green’s comments to reporters on a Zoom call. She is the most outspoken women’s sports star going, and testified in front of Congress on progressing women’s sports.

“We know all this, about all social movements and all people who are marginalized, whether it’s by race or gender, religion, sexuality, whatever it is, it is not just their job to be the ones fighting oppression,” she said in response to Green’s comments. “We need all of the other people as well. So to have someone who does know what it is like to be oppressed, in many ways, to heap that all back on female players, or people who play female sports, it is just really disappointing.”

The spat was more of a misunderstanding. In truth, Green butchered a message that was more in support of Rapinoe’s position than against it, though he was clearly not as well-versed on the topic as he thought he was.

Rapinoe mentioned both on this call, and to Congress, about the lack of media coverage for women’s sports.

Title IX mandates that there must be an equal opportunity for girls and young women to play sports in school, and while that act has offered that protection for millions for nearly 50 years, no one can legislate what the paying public chooses to attend or watch.

As someone who served as a college athletic media relations director for a softball team, a volleyball team, swimming/diving team and women’s basketball team for five years total, trust me when I say this is not some sexist rant.

For years I begged for coverage from the surrounding media outlets, and the answer from the members of the media was normally, “I’d love to, but … ”

For the last 25 years I have been on the other side of this media relationship, and the second half of the answer is, “but not enough people watch.” Actually, that’s being kind. Normally the response is, “Nobody cares.”

Those figurative answers came from all media types, regardless of their gender.

Somebody cares. But there are just not enough of them.

It’s why you seldom see or hear the subject of women’s sports bantered about on sports talk radio, on the national cable sports stations, on the local TV broadcast or — admittedly — on your local online news source or newspaper.

You see some, just not much.

Since virtually every consumer habit can be quantified and tracked, we in the media know we just need more people to watch it to cover it more.

In 2019, the last season the WNBA played with fans in the stands, its 12 teams combined to average 6,535 fans per game. It was likely closer to 5,500. In 2018-19, the NBA’s average attendance was nearly three times that at 17,857.

The average price for a family of four to attend an NBA regular season game is $442.28. Cut that number in half for a WNBA game.

That season, the average attendance for the NCAA’s record 5,312 Division I women’s basketball games was 1,625. Across all three NCAA divisions, women’s basketball drew about 11.5 million fans. Men’s Division I games averaged 4,659, and exceeded 31 million fans across all three levels.

(Having “reported” home attendance figures for women’s basketball games over the years when I worked in that field, I assure you these statistics are inflated. Exaggerating attendance in every NCAA sport is an unwritten athletic department mandate.)

The 2021 NCAA men’s title game between Baylor and Gonzaga drew 16.9 million viewers, the worst number for CBS since it started carrying the game back in 1982. The women’s title between Stanford and Arizona enjoyed its highest ratings since 2014, with 4 million viewers.

When you compare women’s sports against itself, all of these figures are positive. There has been so much evolution over the last 35 years.

The funding is better. There is revenue. The players are better. The games are better. And according to Axios Sports, eight of the top 10 most-followed NCAA basketball players who reached this year’s Elite Eight were women.

There is undeniable growth.

The trouble begins once you start comparing the men against the women.

When I asked an front office member of a WNBA franchise if the league could make it on its own without the backing of the NBA, the person was quick to say no.

It’s doubtful that women’s college basketball could, either.

As NCAA president Mark Emmert correctly noted two days before the women’s basketball Final Four in San Antonio, women are about 50 years behind the men in the evolution of sports.

It’s 2021, and America has women’s basketball games on ESPN. As an organization, the WNBA is about to turn 25. The U.S. Women’s National soccer team is an attraction that sells out. There is a pro women’s soccer league. Women’s tennis thrives.

For anyone over the age of 40, these developments were unfathomable 30 years ago. For anyone over the age of 60, all of this would have been preposterous.

It just won’t all be even until the stands are full. So it’s all still a fight, even if it’s not right.