NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Championship Format Change Approved

Sept. 17, 2001

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - The NCAA announced today that it will change the format of the Division I Women's Basketball Championship to move the championship to a Saturday-Monday and Sunday-Tuesday model effective in 2003.

The current format has games played on a Friday-Sunday and Saturday-Monday schedule. The 2002 championship will begin with first- and second-rounds being played at the campus sites of the top 16 seeds Friday, March 15, and Sunday, March 17, or Saturday, March 16, and Monday, March 18. The regionals will be played Saturday, March 23, and Monday, March 25.

The four regional sites for 2002 are: East - Entertainment & Sports Arena (19,722), Raleigh, North Carolina, North Carolina State University, host, Mideast - U.S. Cellular Arena (11,360), Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Marquette University, host, Midwest - Hilton Coliseum (14,044), Ames, Iowa, Iowa State University, host, and West - Boise State Pavilion (12,000), Boise, Idaho, Boise State University, host. The 2002 Women's Final Four will be Friday, March 29 and Sunday, March 31 at the Alamodome (29,619) in San Antonio.

In 2003, the tournament will go to its new format with all 63 games being broadcast by ESPN and ESPN2. The first- and second-rounds will be broadcast on a regional basis with all games available on pay-per-view and will be played at 16 sites Saturday, March 22 and Monday, March 24 or Sunday, March 23 and Tuesday, March 25. The regionals will be played over four days, instead of two, with two regionals Saturday, March 29, and Monday, March 31, and two regionals Sunday, March 30, and Tuesday, April 1. All regional games will be televised live on ESPN.Stanford will host the West Regional in 2003, along with the University of Dayton (East), the University of Tennessee (Mideast) and the University of New Mexico (Midwest).The NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Committee will determine, no later than its 2002 summer meeting, which of the 2003 regionals will be played on which dates.The 2003 Women's Final Four will be played Sunday, April 6, and Tuesday, April 8, at the Georgia Dome (30,000) in Atlanta.

The championship bracket selection show will remain on the Sunday prior to the start of the tournament and will continue to be televised live by ESPN. The 2003 selection show will be Sunday, March 16.

Future dates and sites of the Division I Women's Basketball Championship are as follows:

2004First- and second-rounds: March 20 and 22, and March 21 and 23.Regionals: March 27 and 29, and March 28 and 30.Women's Final Four: April 4 and 6, News Orleans Sports Arena (18,500), New Orleans, Louisiana, Tulane University, host.

2005First- and second-rounds: March 19 and 21, and March 20 and 22.Regionals: March 26 and 28, and March 27 and 29.Women's Final Four: April 3 and 5, Conseco Fieldhouse (18,697) or RCA Dome (37,263), Butler University and Horizon League, hosts.

2006First- and second-rounds: March 18 and 20, and March 19 and 21.Regionals: March 25 and 27, and March 26 and 28.Women's Final Four: April 2 and 4, Fleet Center (18,560), Harvard University, Northeastern University and the Massachusetts Sports Partnership, hosts.

2007First- and second-rounds: March 17 and 19, and March 18 and 20.Regionals: March 24 and 26, and March 25 and 27.Women's Final Four: April 1 and 3, Gund Arena (20,000), Cleveland State University and Mid-American Conference, hosts.

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