The AIAW women's basketball tournament was a national tournament for women's collegiate basketball teams in the United States, held annually from 1972 to 1982. The winners of the AIAW tournaments from 1972 to 1981 are recognized as the national champions for those years.
|Replaced by||NCAA tournament|
|No. of teams||16 / 24|
|Most titles||Immaculata, Delta State (3 each)|
|TV partner(s)||NBC (championship game)|
The AIAW tournament was discontinued after the NCAA began sponsoring a women's collegiate basketball tournament in 1982. (In 1982, both the AIAW and NCAA sponsored competing tournaments.) The AIAW tournament was preceded by a tournament sponsored by the Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (CIAW), which was held from 1969 to 1971.
Sixteen teams were invited to the tournament following qualifying rounds played on college campuses (except 24 teams were invited for the 1980 and 1981 tournaments). Ten of the sixteen teams were the winners of regional tournaments. The country had nine regions, but the Eastern regional was subdivided in a Region 1A and a Region 1B. The winners of those regional championships automatically proceeded to the National tournament, then a selection committee chose additional teams based upon considerations for individual team performance and geographical balance. Beginning in 1975, the AIAW divided its teams into divisions, and held separate tournaments for Division II and Division III teams.
Pre-NCAA statistics, based on AIAW Archives, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.
Division I/Large CollegeEdit
- 1969 West Chester (Pennsylvania) def. Western Carolina 65-39 (CIAW invitational tournament, six player format)
- 1970 Cal State-Fullerton def. West Chester 50-46 (CIAW invitational tournament, six player format)
- 1971 Mississippi State College for Women def. West Chester 57-55 (CIAW qualification tournament)
|1972||Immaculata||52–48||West Chester State||Normal, Illinois|
|1973||Immaculata (2)||59–52||Queens College||Flushing, New York|
|1974||Immaculata (3)||68–53||Mississippi College||Manhattan, Kansas|
|1975||Delta State||90–81||Immaculata||Harrisonburg, Virginia|
|1976||Delta State (2)||69–64||Immaculata||State College, Pennsylvania|
|1977||Delta State (3)||68–55||LSU||Minneapolis, Minnesota|
|1978||UCLA||90–74||Maryland||Los Angeles, California|
|1979||Old Dominion||75–65||Louisiana Tech||Greensboro, North Carolina|
|1980||Old Dominion (2)||68–53||Tennessee||Mount Pleasant, Michigan|
|1981||Louisiana Tech||79–59||Tennessee||Eugene, Oregon|
The code in each cell represents the furthest the team made it in the respective tournament:
- CH National Champion
- RU National Runner-up
- SF , 3rd , 4th Semifinals (3rd-4th place)
- QF , 5th , 6th , T8 Quarterfinals (5th-8th place)
- T12 , T16 Round of 12 or 16 (9th-16th place)
- T24 Play-in Round (Starting 2013) Round of 24 (17th-24th place)
Division II/Small CollegeEdit
|1976||Berry (GA)||68–62||West Georgia||Ashland, Ohio|
|1977||Southeastern Louisiana||92–76||Phillips||Pomona, California|
|1978||High Point||92–88||South Carolina State||Florence, South Carolina|
|1979||South Carolina State||75–65||Dayton||Fargo, North Dakota|
|1980||Dayton||83–53||College of Charleston||Dayton, Ohio|
|1981||William Penn||64–51||College of Charleston||Dayton, Ohio|
|1982||Francis Marion||92–63||College of Charleston||Charleston, South Carolina|
|1980||Worcester State||76–73||Wisconsin–La Crosse||Spokane, Washington|
|1981||Wisconsin–La Crosse||79–71||Mount Mercy||Dayton, Ohio|
|1982||Concordia–Moorhead||73–72||Mount Mercy||Cedar Rapids, Iowa|
|Eastern Connecticut State||1||R16|
|Notre Dame de Namur||1||R16|
|Rhode Island College||1||R16|
|San Francisco State||2||QF||QF|
- National Women's Invitational Tournament
- NAIA Women's Basketball Championships – began 1981
- NCAA Division I women's basketball tournament – began 1982
- NCAA Division II women's basketball tournament – began 1982
- NCAA Division III women's basketball tournament – began 1982
- Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women
- Major women's sport leagues in North America
- Gregory Cooper. "Women's College Basketball Championship History Page". Archived from the original on 2009-10-26. Retrieved 2009-06-03.
- "NCAA Record Book" (PDF). Retrieved 2013-05-24.
- Litsky, Frank (March 12, 1995). "When Small Schools Ruled Women's Game". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-07-13.
- Amdur, Neil (April 7, 2002). "A Small College Link to Women's Game". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-07-13.
- "Women's Basketball Hall of Fame: Historical Timeline". Archived from the original on 2009-06-21. Retrieved 2009-07-14.
- "Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame: Cathy Rush Biography". Archived from the original on 2009-08-31. Retrieved 2009-07-20.
- Hult & Trekell 1991, p. 288
- "Pre-NCAA Statistical Leaders and AIAW Results" (PDF). NCAA. Retrieved 2012-10-31.