UConn
Michael Conroy/Associated Press

UConn Woman Basketball Player Advocates For Change At ESPYs

UConn women’s basketball player Paige Bueckers took home an ESPY for Best College Athlete, Women’s Sports.

After she accepted the award on the ESPY’s rooftop stage and thanked her family, friends, coaches, and teammates, Paige Bueckers used the stage as a platform to praise Black women. She also used her platform to advocate for more media coverage of Black women athletes.

Paige Bueckers said as a white woman who plays in a predominately Black sport, she acknowledges the imbalance of media coverage Black women athletes receive.

“In the WNBA last season the postseason awards, 80 percent of the winners were Black, but they got half the amount of coverage as the white athletes,” Bueckers said. “So I think it’s time for a change.”

VIA TWITTER

She also used her acceptance speech to praise Black women in all spectrums and ensured that Black women will continue to have her support.

“To all the incredible Black women in my life, on my teams. To Breonna Taylor and all the lives lost. To those names I have not yet learned but I hope to share — I stand behind you and I will continue to follow you and follow your lead and fight for you guys,” Bueckers said.

VIA TWITTER

For Paige Bueckers to use her acceptance speech to advocate and acknowledge the lack of media coverage Black women athletes receive, she is creating a conversation to promote change. According to a USC and Purdue University study, researchers found 95% of total television coverage as well as the ESPN highlights show SportsCenter focused on men’s sports in 2019. This percentage is very high when women are still participating in sports such as professional basketball, professional soccer, professional tennis, professional fighting, professional softball, gymnastics, and volleyball. Women’s sports need to be valued at the same status as men’s sports. But since women’s sports are rarely featured, the lack of media coverage is much lower for Black women athletes.

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