Iowa women’s basketball responds to NCAA disparities in tournament weight rooms
Iowa (KCRG) - Photos posted on Twitter by Stanford sports performance coach Ali Kershner went viral last week, showing the disparities in the men’s and women’s weight rooms for the NCAA tournament.
The Iowa Women’s basketball team is preparing for their first NCAA tournament game on Sunday, with their 11:00 a.m. game against Central Michigan kicking off the tournament.
In a Zoom call Saturday, Head Coach Lisa Bluder says the team’s main focus going into the tournament is the game, but she says she’s glad to see women speaking up.
“We want our women to use their voices. We want our women to use their platforms. We want them to speak out when things are not right, because for too long, too many people didn’t speak out when it was wrong,” Bluder said. “It’s a generation of women right now that are determined to make a change. And are willing to put their necks on the line to make a change. And I think we’re moving in the right direction.”
Bluder said it’s important teams stick up for each other.
“To me, we’ve made it as good of an experience as we can, I’m happy with that, but yeah, some of the things you see between the men’s and women’s tournaments, it’s like here we go again. It gets frustrating,” Bluder said. “It gets very frustrating and I’m really proud of the women using their voices to bring attention to this.”
Iowa Junior Monika Czinano said she was also proud to see both female and male players speaking out against the differences.
“Seeing that is definitely discouraging but I’m so proud of everyone I’ve seen step forward and shed some light,” Czinano said. “I’m just hoping that the more and more recognition that gets brought to it the entire nation will see that stuff like that, that really is not okay.”
NCAA basketball officials apologized for the weight room disparities in a Zoom call on Friday.
Tweets from the NCAA women’s basketball account showed the women’s weight room has now been upgraded to a much bigger space with a wide variety of equipment, soon after administrators said they would fix that issue.
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