In sports, school, business, well… everywhere, there are female figures both prominent and unnoticed that are deserving of appreciation.
Basketball offers an incredible platform for women at every level of the sport. We are seeing more female coaches, referees, and sponsored athletes than ever before. Naturally, society still has room for improvement in terms of acknowledgment and appreciation of women, but we are getting there!
In thinking of the most touted accomplishment’s by women at the height of the sport, things have been unfortunately stagnant. The NBA is on only its third female referee since Violet Palmer broke that barrier in 1997. Becky Hammon broke barriers as the first female assistant coach, but she has already been at it for five years. It would be nice to see more movement on this front in the Association.
It would not be difficult to imagine Hammon stepping into a head coaching position in the NBA after such a successful tenure under legendary coach, Gregg Popovich. We’ll see.
The WNBA is currently as talented if not more so than it has ever been. All-time leading scorer, Diana Taurasi is still doing her thing in Phoenix, as well as the legendary Sue Bird for Seattle Storm. There is also plenty of young talent such as Elena Delle Donne, A’ja Wilson, Breanna Stewart, Brittney Griner, Maya Moore… you get it.
Unfortunately, despite the enormous talent in the league, revenue streams are not strong enough to support player salaries that rival their male counterparts. Basketball purists can appreciate the talent, but without increased support, many of the top players may start venturing overseas to make more money. Let’s keep these ladies here, shall we?
The NCAAW scene is thriving. March 2018 provided as much madness as we can remember for some time on the lady’s side. The sustained greatness of programs like UCONN mixed with up-and-comers such as Mississippi State has made for some incredibly entertaining basketball.
Locally, women’s basketball is going strong as well. The Missouri State Lady Bears are looking like a contender in the upcoming Missouri Valley Conference Tournament, currently seeded second with only one game to play. The Drury Lady Panthers? Oh, they can’t lose. 28-0. Crazy.
Ranked at the top, the GLVC tournament is theirs to lose. The first game is tonight at 6:00PM in Illinois against McKendree, who are winless against the Panthers all-time, including a 17 point loss earlier this season.
Success abounds at the high school level as well, with many of our Yanders Law players and The Basketball Movement athletes showing out all season long. The future of women’s basketball is strong and we hope to help in making it stronger.
Special shoutouts also to all of the mothers, grandmothers, and other guardians of basketball players. Often unsung heroes, we see these special ladies giving so much to their players to put them in the best possible position to succeed. We see you, and we appreciate you.
Happy International Women’s Day again from your friends at The Basketball Movement!