WOMEN'S FINAL FOUR: ATTENDANCE RECORD, COULD DATES BE MOVED?
One idea being discussed by the NCAA women's basketball
committee is holding their season-ending tournament a week
or two before it currently is held, according to Doug Tucker
of the AP. That schedule, or a week or two later, "wouldn't
conflict as much with the men's tournament." Any such
change "would be a few years away, though, and ESPN would
have to be involved in the discussions." ESPN holds rights
to the event through 2002 (AP/Bergen RECORD, 3/30).
AT THE GATE: Final attendance at the NCAA women's Final
Four tournament in K.C. was 17,976 for both the semifinals
and final. This year's tournament broke the women's all-
time record, as a total of 285,428 spectators attended all
sessions of the tournament, topping the previous mark of
280,494 set in '94 (AP/Bergen RECORD, 3/30).
ON TV: Friday's NCAA women's Final Four on ESPN earned
a 1.3 rating, down from a 1.9 last year (N.Y. TIMES, 3/31).
CBS Sports President Sean McManus: "It's unfortunate there
isn't some way to provide network coverage for the women's
championship. Because there is a perception if you're only
on ESPN, it can't be a major event" (USA TODAY, 3/31).