Ben Simmons does not hold the NCAA in high regard, to put it mildly.
Asked Saturday about the stark disparity between resources dedicated to the NCAA men’s basketball tournament and NCAA women’s tournament, Simmons said the following:
“I don’t have any respect for the NCAA at all. What they’re doing is wrong. I’ve seen the women’s stuff with the gym — that’s obviously not fair. They have so much money that they can’t set up a weight room the same and be equal with that? So, that’s b---s---. There’s no excuse for that — they have no excuse. They have too much money to not be able to do that and take care of the women’s side. The NCAA’s been b---s--- about that. It’s disrespectful to those girls who are working just as hard as the guys, and having the same opportunity.”
Women’s players and coaches have drawn attention over the past several days to differences in workout facilities, food and other amenities. The below video is from Oregon's Sedona Prince:
UConn women’s coach Geno Auriemma told reporters that teams participating in the men’s tournament are using daily PCR COVID-19 tests, while women’s teams are using daily antigen tests. In response to that news being revealed, NCAA president Mark Emmert told USA Today the tests are “no different at all in terms of our ability to mitigate risk." Emmert did not explain why the men's and women's teams would be tested differently.
Philadelphia native Dawn Staley, the head coach of the No. 1 seed South Carolina women, released a statement Friday about the “glaring deficiencies and inequities.”
The men’s tournament Round of 64 began Friday, and the women’s tournament will start Sunday.
Simmons, who was selected first by the Sixers in the 2016 NBA draft after one year at LSU, was critical of the NCAA in the 2016 Showtime documentary “One & Done.”
"The NCAA is really f---ed up," Simmons said in the documentary. "Everybody's making money except the players. We're the ones waking up early as hell to be the best teams and do everything they want us to do and then the players get nothing. They say education, but if I'm there for a year, I can't get much education."