By Laura Pappano
It’s March Madness and that means one thing: Time to vote with your pen, and rehearse your friendly trash-talking zingers.
The brackets are not just about the games, of course, but about the culture we create around the games. They are about the notice we give to female athletes, the ratings we create when we watch on TV or online, the status we convey when we bother to talk about the drama in the final seconds of play.
This exercise is about knowing the names and the faces of the women because we certainly will hear about the men. This is about seeing and recognizing the display of moxie by female athletes in big moments. It’s a picture worthy of sharing with children and CEOs.
The women’s game may seem to hardly exist amid the explosion of attention given the men’s tournament.
Yes, many things are getting better. Media sources like The Bleacher Report now handicap the women’s tournament as well as the men’s. President Obama — famous for his passion for the men’s game — has his women’s brackets all filled out.
But let’s do this — not for charity, but because it’s good play.
I don’t want to hear about problems with “parity” on the women’s side. So what if the same handful of teams are serious Final Four contenders? Look down the rankings be find the comers. There are strong players up and emerging teams worth our attention. Who will spot them first?
So, if you don’t have a bracket — get it here. Fill it out. And then tune in and talk it up.