The NCAA started sponsoring a championship tournament in Division I Women’s Basketball in 1982. The sport has since grown in popularity and televised games have thousands of viewers.
Women’s basketball tends to be led by a handful of extremely talented teams. The sort of play stresses team unity. A really great program has both talented players and a successful coach. The results in this article cover a few categories. These include NCAA champions, runners-ups, and WNBA Draft Lottery choices. This method lets us acknowledge a program’s past success while highlighting recent dominance.
University of Connecticut
UCONN has been on a top contender in college basketball, winning over 85% of their games under Head Coach Geno Auriemma (1985-current). The Huskies have won 11 national championships, more than any other women’s program. They have had six lottery players picked in the past five WNBA drafts and all-time Husky great Breanna Stewart was the No. 1 pick in the 2016 draft.
University of Tennessee – Knoxville
Before UT’s meteoric rise, the Tennessee Lady Vols under Hall of Fame coach Pat Summitt were the queens of the court. During her tenure (1974-2012), Summitt earned unprecedented success, winning eight national championships and over 1,000 games. The Lady Vols have also appeared in all 37 NCAA Tournaments.
The University of Notre Dame
Notre Dame, IN
Under head coach Muffet McGraw (1987-current), the Fighting Irish have made nine Final Four appearances, finishing second five times. McGraw won a title back in 2001 with NCAA Player of the Year Ruth Riley, who went on to have a successful WNBA career. Notre Dame also won the NCAA championship in 2018. In recent seasons, Notre Dame has had over five lottery picks, including 2015 WNBA Rookie of the Year Jewell Loyd, the top choice in the 2015 draft.