The college basketball season is due to kick off on November 6 and as always, there’s a lot of buzz about which team will come out on top. This year, there is an air of extra excitement—while men’s sports have traditionally enjoyed higher viewership, women’s ball is finally gaining momentum.
The 2023-24 season is packed with powerhouse players and this year, with more and more states embracing legal sports betting, fans are presented with more opportunity to engage with what’s already slated to be an exciting race for the NCAA women’s basketball title.
What Does the Landscape Look like this Year?
This time last year, South Carolina was heavily forecasted to take home the trophy. But after a shocking loss to Iowa in the national semi-final, their season ended. It was No. 3 seeded team LSU that took the title instead. It was a major accomplishment for LSU, as neither the men’s nor women’s team had ever played for the championship.
Heading into the 2023-24 season, the Tigers are favored to take the top spot again. Star player Angel Reese returns with several other outstanding players, including Flaujae Johnson, Sa’Myah Smith, Kateri Poole and new signings Hailey Van Lith and Aneesah Morrow. With the addition of the country’s top recruit, Mikaylah Williams, Head Coach Kim Mulkey is well-equipped for the new season.
Yet, LSU doesn’t lead the season preview with the same overwhelming speculation towards victory as the Gamecocks did a year ago—perhaps for the better, seeing as being the favorite last year didn’t lead to a win. There are up to eight teams in contention for the title this year.
Who else Could Take the Title?
UConn is among the top teams that could easily end up number one this year. A disappointing loss to Ohio State last year ended their 111-game winning streak and chance at the trophy. Now the Huskies are determined to make a comeback.
Paige Bueckers, the 2021 Naismith Trophy winner, is back in action after recovering from a torn ACL in 2022. Fans are eagerly anticipating a run at the national championship. With the talented trio of Nika Mühl, Aaliyah Edwards and Aubrey Griffin also returning to the team, expectations are sky-high for the Huskies.
Additionally, Iowa and Virginia Tech, both Final Four participants, have their star players Caitlin Clark and Elizabeth Kitley returning. The question is, can the Hawkeyes and Hokies make it back to the national semi-finals according to the sportsbook experts at offers.bet?
Sports betting and the NCAAW
With 2023 coming to a close, the 2023-24 college basketball season is starting to heat up. As the year closes, three additional states have passed legal sports betting legislation: Vermont, North Carolina and Kentucky. So, what does this mean for women’s college basketball?
Jeff Walz of Louisville sums it up well: “You want casual viewers. We have the women’s basketball fans – it’s, can we get the casual sports viewer? Can we get somebody that’s going to flip on the TV and see a women’s basketball game and stay on? … I think Vegas [sports betting] helps with that.”
How to bet on women’s basketball
Since Vermont, North Carolina and Kentucky came on to the scene, fans can now place bets on women’s basketball games in 35 states, plus the District of Columbia. Of the states where wagering is legal, 25 states (and D.C.) have a framework for online or mobile sports betting. Other states, such as Delaware and New Mexico, only allow bets to be placed in person.
In states where online or mobile betting is legal, there are generally a variety of operators to choose from. Most online and mobile sportsbooks list odds for NCAAW games and performances, as well as for the WNBA, NCAA, NBA and several other major and minor league sports.
Always do thorough research before choosing a platform, bet responsibly and remember that placing wagers should be played for entertainment and fan engagement, not as a way of making income.