Degree Wants You to Fill Out a Women's March Madness Bracket, Not Just Men's
There's more to March Madness than men's hoops. Last year, some 40 million people filled out a men's bracket, but only a fraction of that number—12 percent—did so for women teams.
After crunching those numbers, Unilever's Degree deodorant and agency Edelman drafted Candace Parker to help narrow the divide in a "Bracket Gap Challenge."
The WNBA star and former NCAA standout urges fans to visit this site, built by Degree and Yahoo! Sports, to complete a women's bracket. You could win $25,000, but that's not the only prize at stake, as Parker explains below:
Degree will donate an additional $75,000 to the contest winner's favorite women's college basketball team. Fans can choose their brackets starting March 13, aka "Selection Sunday," when tournament draws are determined.
"What we love about this program so much is its inherent simplicity that can help to bring about meaningful change," says Desi Okeke, director of Degree North America. "Brackets drive engagement and viewership, which leads to more recognition for these athletes. So, we're leveraging an authentic mechanism of fantasy sports to create real-world fandom and tangible financial support."
Okeke adds: "We hope that the Bracket Gap Challenge raises awareness for the next generation of women's college basketball players and motivates girls across the country to stay in the game."
The initiative arrives ahead of Title IX's 50th anniversary. That landmark civil rights law, which prohibited gender-based discrimination in educational institutions receiving federal funds, had a profound impact for female athletes across the nation's high schools and colleges. Last fall, AB InBev's Michelob Ultra pledged $100 million in media dollars to level the playing field for women's sports content over the next five years.