How to Bet on the Women’s NCAA March Madness

A record-setting number of basketball fans watched and bet on the women’s March Madness final last season, and that momentum certainly looks to be carrying over as Selection Sunday nears for the 2024 Women’s NCAA Tournament.

The 2023 championship game featured superstar Caitlin Clark’s Iowa team against the perennial powerhouse LSU Tigers, who captured the crown and denied Clark her first national title.

Read more details on how to bet on the women’s NCAA March Madness as we talk about the landscape of this year’s women’s tournament, with Clark leading Iowa one more time and trying to cap her incredible college career.

Betting Favorites to Win Women’s March Madness

South Carolina, the unbeaten No. 1-ranked team in the country as we near the women’s March Madness Selection Sunday, is a clear favorite to win the Women’s NCAA Tournament national championship.

Women's March Madness betting odds

The Gamecocks are a -130 favorite at BetOnline, while Iowa is the second betting choice at +650, followed by LSU (+700) and Connecticut (+1600).

Stanford (+1600) and Texas (+2500) are fifth and sixth on the oddsmakers’ list.

Women’s NCAA March Madness Schedule

As it is for the men’s NCAA Tournament, the women’s field will be announced Sunday, March 17.

The women’s NCAA Tournament runs from the First Four games, Tuesday, March 19, through the women’s NCAA Tournament Final Four April 3-5.

  • Selection Sunday – March 17, 2024
  • First Four – March 19-20, 2024
  • First Round – March 22-23, 2024
  • Second Round – March 24-25, 2024
  • Sweet Sixteen – March 29-30, 2024
  • Elite Eight – March 31-April 1, 2024
  • Final Four – April 5, 2024
  • National Title Game – April 7, 2024

Betting on Women’s NCAA March Madness – The Context

Sunday, March 10, 2024, provided an eventful and entertaining championship day for women’s NCAA fans, highlighted by a pair of closely watched conference championship games.

First, Clark and Iowa narrowly defeated Nebraska to win the Big Ten Conference tournament title and likely secured a regional No. 1 seed when the NCAA bracket is announced Selection Sunday, March 17.

Then, the No. 1-ranked team in the nation, South Carolina, turned back LSU as the two sides scuffled late in the Southeastern Conference tournament championship game.

Players from both teams received suspensions to come in the first round of the Women’s NCAA Tournament.

With Selection Sunday will come more definite betting angles on the women’s tournament, but we can be reasonably sure that South Carolina, LSU and Iowa will receive No. 1 seeds and will be on course for a collision in the Final Four or the national championship game.

What Are the Best Narratives to Follow?

As women’s college basketball continues to set television and streaming viewership records, its story lines become more prominent and compelling.

There are more than a few to follow during this season’s women’s NCAA Tournament.

Caitlin Clark’s Quest

The best player in the world of women’s college basketball, Caitlin Clark desperately chases her elusive national championship.

The Iowa Hawkeyes, led by Clark’s 34 points and 12 assists, beat Nebraska in overtime to win the Big Ten Conference tournament Sunday and are eager to atone for their title-game loss to LSU last season.

Clark led the nation in points (31.9 per game) and led an offense that scored more points per game (almost 93) than any other Division 1 team.

She will do anything and everything to push the Hawkeyes to the summit.

Clark averaged team highs in assists (8.9 per game), rebounds (7.3) and steals (1.8) this season and hit better than 38% on her 3-point attempts.

South Carolina and the Defense of No. 1

Women's March Madness
Image: Twitter/Our Esquina

The top-ranked Gamecocks, coached by women’s basketball legend Dawn Staley, survived an SEC tournament semifinal battle when Kamilla Cardoso banked in a 3-pointer as time expired.

South Carolina then took out LSU in a contentious matchup that included a fight-marred final minute.

Clearly, the Gamecocks are battle-tested and prepared to take their third NCAA crown in the past seven seasons.

Although South Carolina lost five players to the WNBA Draft last season, the team reloaded strongly.

The top threat is the 6ft7 center Cardoso, who leads the team in scoring and rebounding (14 points and 9.5 rebounds per game) and blocks an average of 2.6 shots per game.

Guard Raven Johnson, a sophomore, runs the show. She leads the team in minutes played per game and assists, dishing out almost five per game.

MiLaysia Fulwiley, a freshman standout, scored 24 points in the win over LSU last Sunday.

The Fighting Tigers, Defending Champs

Women's March Madness
Image: Twitter/Sporting News

The LSU Tigers, led by Angel Reese on the court and with charismatic coach Kim Mulkey taking her share of the spotlight, won the 2023 women’s NCAA Tournament last season, and, like South Carolina, reloaded in a big way.

Coming over from the ACC, guard Hailey Van Lith led the champs in minutes played and assists, while 2022 Big East Freshman of the Year Aneesah Morrow also joined the Tigers via the NCAA transfer portal and contributed 16.5 points per game and 10 rebounds per game.

The feisty Reese, who famously taunted Caitlin Clark near the end of last season’s championship game, is back and better than ever for an LSU team that fell just short of upsetting South Carolina in the conference title game.

Reese leads the team in scoring (19.5 points per game) and rebounding (13.1 per game).

The Tigers team were 34-2 last season and are 28-5 entering this season’s women’s NCAA Tournament.

The UConn Comeback

Women's March Madness
Image: Twitter/UConn Women’s Basketball

The Huskies are lurking as a potential top regional seed, seeking to climb the mountain and return to their glory days.

UConn, which won the 2000 title and finished the 2016 season with its 10th championship in 17 years, has not won it all since then. No school has as many championships as UConn’s 11.

This season, veteran leaders Paige Bueckers and Aaliyah Edwards combine to average better than 38 points per game, and the Huskies are rolling at the right time.

UConn crushed Georgetown 78-42 in the Big East Conference tournament title game Monday night — and Edwards didn’t even play because of a broken nose.

Since a Feb. 11 loss to No. 1 South Carolina, UConn has won nine in a row – all with winning margins of 20 points or more.

Futures Odds and Trends

These odds solidify the leading contenders to win the women’s NCAA Tournament. Here’s a quick explanation for a team’s plus sign (+) and minus sign (-) preceding the number, which you’ll see at online sportsbooks when placing wagers.

UConn +800

This means that on a $100 bet, you’ll stand to win $800 if the Huskies win the women’s title.

South Carolina -130

If you believe the unbeaten Gamecocks can run the table and take the title, you would have to wager $130 to win $100. You would see a return of $230 (the $100 in winnings plus your original $130 stake).

The women’s NCAA Tournament trends are useful guidelines. Stanford, South Carolina and LSU – the past three tourney champions – all were No. 1 seeds. The upcoming crown is likely to be worn by a No. 1 seed again.

And, certainly, at least one of the four No. 1 seeds is a lock for the Final Four. That’s been the case every year over the past four decades.

The Past 10 Women’s NCAA Tournament Champions

Year Winner Opponent
2023 LSU Iowa
2022 South Carolina UConn
2021 Stanford Arizona
2020 N/A – Covid N/A – Covid
2019 Baylor Duke
2018 Notre Dame Mississippi State
2017 South Carolina Mississippi State
2016 UConn Syracuse
2015 UConn Notre Dame
2014 UConn Notre Dame
2013 UConn Louisville

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Jay Dieffenbach
Sports Betting Expert

Jay is a Sports Betting Writer at Techopedia.com, and has been working in US sports for more than 20 years. He's worked for Daily Racing Form, the Arizona Republic, The Athletic and FanDuel among other sports and gambling positions.