NCAA Issues Apology for Lackluster Women’s Weight Room, Unveils Upgraded Setup

With March Madness underway, the NCAA women playing in the college basketball tournament in San Antonio, Texas last week faced a weight room with only a single rack of dumbbells, according to NPR. The sparse amount of equipment was quickly publicly criticized by the players, coaches, and some fans, and NCAA officials apologized and unveiled a new, fully stocked weight room on Saturday.

“I want to be really clear,” NCAA President Mark Emmert said. “This is not something that should have happened and, should we ever conduct a tournament like this again, will ever happen again.”

The new weight room at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center features six squat racks, heavier weights, resistance bands, benches,  and exercise balls, according to ESPN. All the equipment is placed so the athletes are able to social distance while working out.

In addition, areas next to the practice courts now have exercise bikes, yoga mats, rowing machines, treadmills and other weight equipment. Food options for the student athletes in San Antonio were also improved after complaints. Covid-19 testing has been adjusted after students weighed in, officials say.

News about the controversy surrounding the stark differences between the well-stocked men’s weight room and the women’s weight room emerged Thursday after a Stanford University coach posted a picture on social media comparing the men’s and women’s weight rooms. Lynn Holzman, the NCAA vice president for women’s basketball, said while the situation has been “fixed,” she is glad a spotlight is now shining on issues related to women’s basketball.