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The home for coverage of all FHC athletics

FHC Sports Report

WNBA 2024 viewership increase prediction with the help of key upcoming stars


Coming in at an astonishing 24 million viewers at its peak, the women’s NCAA Basketball Championship for the first time in basketball history has obtained more views than the men—which came in at around 14.8 million views. This is mainly due to Caitlin Clark (The University of Iowa) herself. With the many records she has broken, some including the all-time leader in points among major women’s college basketball players and all-time NCAA Division I men’s and women’s scoring leader, she has proven to many that she is a force to be reckoned with. 

However, after declaring that she will go into the WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association) draft for next year, how much will this change women’s basketball? I think it will be drastically different. 

This year, Clark is expected to go into the WNBA draft as the number one seed and is most likely getting picked up by Indiana Fever. Due to this, there has been an increase in prices and demand for these tickets going into next season, showing a higher interest in professional women’s basketball. I won’t be surprised if these ticket prices continue to rise, especially after Apr. 15 when the WNBA 2024 draft will take place. 

Not only has Clark spiked viewership, but many of the women who have declared for the draft this year have helped this increase of interest within women’s basketball. Two are Cameron Brink (Stanford University) and Angel Reese (Louisiana State University), which have both been talked about greatly in the media. 

However, let’s not forget about Paige Bueckers (University of Connecticut) who has also been a staple for women’s college basketball despite injuries. But a main reason why she won’t be a large contributor to the WNBA ratings this upcoming year is because she is taking a fifth season with UConn, but I won’t be surprised if she declares for the 2025 draft.

Nonetheless, going back to this year’s WNBA viewership, with this stacked draft and many of them being the faces of not only NCAA women’s basketball but NCAA basketball as a whole, I don’t doubt we will see this increase of interest throughout basketball. 

Even with this rise of engrossment, I feel some of these pro players aren’t as keen on this spotlight from these incoming rookies, especially Clark, and predictions for her first season. For instance, Diana Taurasi talked to ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt about Clark and her transition from college to the WNBA. 

“Reality is coming,” Taurasi said. “You look superhuman playing against some 18-year-olds but you’re going to come play with some grown women that have been playing professional basketball for a long time.”

The negativity from this comment concerns me. Why would you come out and say that about someone who you are going to play with or against? For me, I think it is more so about jealousy over everything. 

Looking at Taurasi’s resume, it seems as though her career is slowly coming to an end. Don’t get me wrong, she has done so much for the WNBA and has been a face for women’s basketball but how she is talking about the upcoming players, especially Clark, exemplifies the lack of leadership when it comes to something that can not only get you more viewership but more money as well.

Overall, looking at this year’s WNBA draft and the season as a whole. I believe there will definitely be an increase in engrossment due to these athletes within this draft. These players have proven themselves throughout college, whether that be the records they have broken, the awards they have obtained, or the partnerships they have signed. So I have no doubt in my mind that women’s basketball is on the up right now and will continue to grow if this pattern of achievements continues. 

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About the Contributor
Olivia Oorbeck
Olivia Oorbeck, Editor-in-Chief
Olivia Oorbeck is a senior on the FHC Sports Report. She is excited about entering her second and final year on the staff. This year, she received the title of editor-in-chief alongside Lily Ohlman. Olivia was a competitive swimmer for eleven years but is part of the ski and water polo teams here at FHC. Her favorite things to do in her free time are art, makeup, or reading. She is an avid sports fan and loves learning new things about different sports. When she graduates, she hopes to go into aviation or aeronautical engineering. Although she doesn't plan on going into any form of journalism, she has a passion for writing and the experiences that come along with it. Her favorite sports team: The Chicago Cubs Her dream vacation: Most places throughout Europe Her pets: She has three dogs and three cats Unusual facts about her: She prefers cold weather over warm weather, so winter is her favorite season; tea over coffee any day; knows how to fly a plane better than driving a boat; and can very much be an introvert at times even though she seems like an extrovert.

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