This Saturday, the top two women’s lacrosse teams in the country are going to be playing perhaps the single most critical game of the entire season, one on which the balance of the entire narrative may turn. A win by North Carolina would validate its status as the nation’s top dog, but a win by Maryland would validate the youth movement the team has made in bringing in the nation’s finest recruiting class.
A men’s lacrosse game between Yale and Maryland, to be broadcast on ESPNews, will precede this game. Yet, ESPN, your once-proud worldwide leader in sports, is not going to be broadcasting this game, instead handing it off to BTN Plus for streaming.
What’s wrong with this picture?
What is wrong is that it is the very same gripe. Despite the fact that there is more airtime available for collegiate athletics thanks to the proliferation of TV networks, the imbalance of men’s to women’s athletics not only remains prevalent, it has gotten worse.
In 2017, there are going to be 130 men’s college games televised on major, regional, and streaming networks. The women? They’re getting 73, barely half as many.