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For the first time, NCAA women's basketball championship drew more viewers than men's

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

It was a record-breaking season in college basketball, and the viewership ratings reflected the enthusiasm sports fans had for this year's women's and men's tournaments.

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Over the weekend, South Carolina finished off a perfect season with its victory against Iowa in the women's bracket. And on Monday, on the men's side, UConn beat Purdue.

SHAPIRO: This year was the first time more people tuned in for the women's championship game than the men's. The Iowa-South Carolina game averaged almost 19 million viewers and peaked at 24 million in the final 15 minutes, according to ESPN.

CHANG: That's a whole lot of eyeballs. Iowa's Caitlin Clark leaves setting the record for points scored across women's and men's college basketball, and her stardom drew some of the biggest audiences this tournament has ever seen. With the WNBA draft quickly approaching, you won't have to wait long to see what's in store for some of this year's top players.

SHAPIRO: The draft is set to take place on Monday. Clark is expected to go to Indiana, and we'll find out where some of this year's other standout players are heading next.

(SOUNDBITE OF BEYONCE SONG, "RUN THE WORLD (GIRLS)") Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by an NPR contractor. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.

Kai McNamee
[Copyright 2024 NPR]
Gus Contreras
[Copyright 2024 NPR]

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