Is Lowering the Rim the Answer to Women’s Basketball’s Attendance Problems?

I try not to do this too much but I wrote this post for BlogHer yesterday, cross posted it on Draft Day Suit and now I am cross posting it here. If you are looking for something lighter, check out my Top 6 Embarrassing Sports Music Videos on My Life Scoop.

low attendance women's basketball

It is no secret that men’s basketball has a larger audience. You can say “No! No! Really! Our high school girls team is the state champ! We sell out every game!” and that may be true, but deep down inside you know that this is an exception and not a rule. Men’s basketball does better at every level: little league, Jr. high, high school, college, professional and international.

I guess that is why FIBA – the International Basketball Federation, or Fédération Internationale de Basket-ball – is considering lowering the hoop in the women’s game.

FIBA wants to see if it will make the women’s game more “attractive”.


At the first ever women’s basketball summit they also discussed new uniforms to appeal to a wider audience.

Now, before I completely flip my lid, I should let you know that FIBA and the International Olympic Committee already have smaller balls for the women’s game.

The game as it is is a good game, but we have a large majority of women’s basketball players that don’t have that size and there are questions whether the game is as attractive as it really could be if you were able to play over the basket rather than under the basket.”

Karlovy Vary

Do people really believe that I watch basketball for the dunks? If that were the case I would watch the annual slam-dunk contest and just watch hockey for the rest of basketball season. NO! That isn’t why I watch men or women’s basketball. I watch basketball because I love the game. I buy tickets because I like basketball. Playing over the basket is great, but it is not going to determine where I spend my money.

When it comes to women’s basketball Jayda Evans always says it best.

Say what? To be frank, this has to be the stupidest idea I’ve ever heard at this point in the women’s game. What needs to happen globally is attention to coaching or maybe more cooperation with the WNBA so that more international stars could play in a league with the world’s best. Then skill would improve and that would draw more appeal globally.

Lowering the rim? For what? A cheap dunk? Please. FIBA should know by now that the game of basketball is more than dunking. A wicked crossover or three-pointer can be just as exciting — especially if in a close game that seals a victory. Just ask any Sue Bird fan.

As a feminist I am insulted. FIBA is suggesting that girls can’t handle the big balls (no pun intended) and women can’t play over the net.

Oh really? Let’s ask Brittney Griner.

 Baylor Basketball

I am not going to sit here and tell you that women and men are exactly the same, any five year old in a bathtub could tell you different. What I will say and what I do believe is that women’s basketball is doing just fine with the basket where it is. Lowering the hoop cheapens the ladies’s game.

I have a much better idea on a way to make the women’s game more attractive. Show it some fucking respect.

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  1. Right on, sister! GREAT post!

  2. Meh I find both men’s and women’s basketball dull. The net or outfits don’t make a difference for me. So..I agree, have some respect for the game and the people playing, lowering the basket is ridiculous. Also – Go Hawkeyes (first pic)!

  3. Frank Sucks says:

    The Girls already play with a smaller ball, so how much difference is there if you lower the hoop 6 in or a foot? The unis is a sexist thing.

    I think people don’t watch (I don’t) is because in most cases its a dull, slow game.

    Having said that, I can’t think of a woman’s sport that is popular.

  4. Wow that’s pretty offensive. And maybe the ladies should wear pretty pretty pink bows in their hair, too? [eyeroll]

  5. If anything, I would think such a move would actually reduce interest in women’s basketball because it wouldn’t be as impressive to watch, and slam dunks wouldn’t be nearly as spectacular.

  6. Hmmm. How about upping the advertising budget?


  7. If I understand correctly, the powers that be want to change the game not because it is dangerous or injurious in any way to the participants but rather due to their inability to convince the masses that a sport they’ve never promoted, a sport that is often ridiculed, athletes who are mocked and for whom it’s only been 14 years of having their own league they’re not making enough money off of it. Wow, now that takes balls!

  8. Stopping by from Clever 1000 to say hello. I will tweet your post with #girlslovesports :o)

  9. OMG – I don’t follow women’s basketball and I have to tell you when I started reading, I thought you were joking because how could it be possible that someone would propose lowering the net (and I am just afraid to know what the proposed uniforms would look like)…remember that movie on the 1st women’s baseball team – A League of Their Own – where the women wore skirts…? Except this is 2010…I think.

    ps visiting from Clever Girls

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