Fans Criticized ABC For The Absurd Way It Ended Up Broadcasting The NCAA Women’s National Game

The conclusion of ABC’s coverage of the women’s national title game on Sunday left basketball enthusiasts dissatisfied.
The South Carolina Gamecocks emerged victorious as the new champions after a commanding performance against the Iowa Hawkeyes, sealing their undefeated season with an 87-75 win.

ABC and ESPN both broadcasted the game, with ESPN offering an alternative commentary featuring Sue Bird and Diana Taurasi. Viewers tuned in to ABC found themselves deprived of the customary postgame celebrations that typically follow championship matchups – particularly those who didn’t support the losing team.

The broadcast abruptly cut off just seconds into the postgame segment. Elle Duncan was mid-sentence when the feed unexpectedly shifted to a commercial break followed by unrelated programming. While viewers had the option to switch to ESPN for continued coverage, they were not informed of this alternative.

Some interpreted this incident as a disregard for women’s basketball, although most were simply frustrated by the abrupt disruption of the postgame moments.
“Bad cutaway,” Front Office Sports’ Michael McCarthy wrote. “They went straight to local news. At least direct folks to ESPN.“

“I just don’t understand why Disney won’t embrace that sports helps their numbers and bottom line and let non-NFL sports get an opportunity on ABC,” HBCU Pulse’s Randall Barnes pointed out. “That access will ultimately help you!!!!“

However, some fans claimed they didn’t encounter such issues. The National Title Game on Sunday likely drew remarkable viewership numbers. Throughout March Madness, Iowa’s games have consistently attracted significant attention. Their victory over LSU in the Elite Eight last Monday became the most-watched women’s college basketball game, surpassing even all MLB and nearly all NBA games from 2023.

The Hawkeyes continued to draw large audiences in their triumph against UConn on Friday, pulling in 14.2 million viewers.

Although the official figures for Sunday’s final have not yet been released, one can anticipate its success. ABC’s decision to cut away shortly after the championship game’s conclusion, at least in many areas, was not well-received.

 

 

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