2018–19 NCAA Division I women's basketball season began in November 2018 and will end with the Final Four title game at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida on April 2019. Practices officially began in September 2018.
Season headlines [ edit ]
June 18 –
Purdue University Fort Wayne (PFW), which was set to begin operation on July 1 following the dissolution of Indiana University – Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW), announced that the athletic program that it would inherit from IPFW, previously known as the Fort Wayne Mastodons, would become the Purdue Fort Wayne Mastodons. PFW also changed its colors from IPFW's former blue and silver scheme to the old gold and black used by its new parent institution.  September 10 – The
Northeast Conference (NEC) announced that Merrimack College would start a transition from the NCAA Division II Northeast-10 Conference and join the NEC effective July 1, 2019. The Warriors will not be eligible for the NCAA tournament until becoming a full D-I member in 2023–24.  October 3 –
Long Island University announced that it would merge its two current athletic programs—the LIU Brooklyn Blackbirds, full members of the NEC, and the Division II LIU Post Pioneers—effective with the 2019–20 school year. The new program will compete under the LIU name with a new nickname and retain LIU Brooklyn's Division I and NEC memberships. This change will have minimal effect on the existing LIU Brooklyn women's basketball program, as LIU has announced that the unified basketball team will be based at the Brooklyn campus.   November 1 – The Associated Press preseason All-America team was released. The leading vote-getters were two guards, Louisville's Asia Durr and Oregon's Sabrina Ionescu, each with 29 of 31 votes. Joining them on the team were Connecticut forward Katie Lou Samuelson (28), Notre Dame guard Arike Ogunbowale (24), and Baylor center Kalani Brown (18). 
Milestones and records [ edit ]
November 13 –
Rutgers head coach C. Vivian Stringer became the sixth college women's coach with 1,000 career wins following the Scarlet Knights' 73–44 pasting of Central Connecticut. She also became the first African-American college coach to reach the milestone.  November 18 – Sabrina Ionescu recorded her 12th career triple-double in Oregon's 102–82 win over Buffalo. Already the holder of the all-divisions NCAA women's record for career triple-doubles, Ionescu equaled the NCAA record for all players regardless of sex, previously held by former  BYU men's player Kyle Collinsworth. 
Conference membership changes [ edit ]
Six schools joined new conferences for the 2018–19 season. Four schools switched between Division I conferences for the 2018–19 season. In addition, two schools moved from
Division II starting this season. The former Division II schools are ineligible for NCAA-sponsored postseason play until completing their D-I transitions in 2022.
In addition to the schools changing conferences, the 2018–19 season will be the last for
Savannah State in D-I with its decision to reclassify all of its sports to D-II.
Finally, one D-I member adopted a new institutional and athletic identity. The 2017–18 school year was the last for
Indiana University – Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW) as a single institution. Following the school's split into separate institutions governed by Indiana University and Purdue University, IPFW degree programs in health sciences are now overseen by Indiana University Fort Wayne, while all other degree programs are governed by Purdue University Fort Wayne (PFW). As noted in the "Season headlines" section, the IPFW athletic program, rebranded in 2016 as the Fort Wayne Mastodons, became the  Purdue Fort Wayne Mastodons, representing only PFW.
New arenas [ edit ]
Arenas reopening [ edit ]
Four teams are returning to newly renovated arenas, all of which were closed for the 2017–18 season.
Arenas closing [ edit ]
Temporary arenas [ edit ]
With the reopening of Fertitta Center delayed, Houston will begin the 2018–19 season at
Texas Southern's Health and Physical Education Arena, where the Cougars played most of their 2017–18 home games.
Robert Morris planned to open the new UPMC Events Center on the site of its former on-campus Sewall Center in January 2019, but the opening has now been delayed to that summer. Until the new arena opens, the Colonials will continue to use the Student Recreation and Fitness Center, a building in the school's North Athletic Complex that opened in September 2017 as part of the UPMC Events Center project.
Season outlook [ edit ]
Pre-season polls [ edit ]
The top 25 from the AP and USA Today Coaches Polls.
Regular Season [ edit ]
Early season tournaments [ edit ]
An upset is a victory by an underdog team. In the context of NCAA Division I Women's Basketball, this generally constitutes an unranked team defeating a team currently ranked in the Top 25. This list will highlight those upsets of ranked teams by unranked teams as well as upsets of #1 teams. Rankings are from the AP poll.
Bold type indicates winning teams in "true road games"—i.e., those played on an opponent's home court (including secondary homes, such as Intrust Bank Arena for Wichita State).
Duke November 11, 2018
Georgia November 14, 2018
Green Bay 56–49
Missouri November 16, 2018
Georgia Tech 63–53
November 18, 2018
Iowa State 75–52
Miami (FL) November 18, 2018
South Florida November 22, 2018
Paradise Jam Island Division
North Carolina 71–69
#17 South Florida
November 23, 2018
Paradise Jam Island Division
November 23, 2018
Gulf Coast Showcase
Florida State 71–67
Iowa November 24, 2018
Junkanoo Jam Bimini Division
South Carolina November 24, 2018
South Dakota 64–59
#24 Iowa State
November 28, 2018
#21 Miami (FL)
November 29, 2018
ACC–Big Ten Women's Challenge
Texas A&M November 29, 2018
#2 Connecticut 89–71
Notre Dame December 2, 2018
Jimmy V Classic/ Rivalry
Stanford December 2, 2018
South Dakota State 80–71
December 8, 2018
Michigan State 88–82
Oregon December 9, 2018
Conference winners and tournament winners [ edit ]
Each of the 32 Division I
athletic conferences ends its regular season with a single-elimination tournament. The team with the best regular-season record in each conference is given the number one seed in each tournament, with tiebreakers used as needed in the case of ties for the top seeding. The winners of these tournaments receive automatic invitations to the 2019 NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Tournament.
Postseason [ edit ]
NCAA Tournament [ edit ]
Tournament upsets [ edit ]
For this list, an "upset" is defined as a win by a team seeded 7 or more spots below its defeated opponent.
Women's NIT [ edit ]
NIT Semifinals and Final [ edit ]
Women's Basketball Invitational [ edit ]
Conference standings [ edit ]
Award winners [ edit ]
Coaching changes [ edit ]
Several teams changed coaches during and after the season.
See also [ edit ]
References [ edit ]
"Purdue Fort Wayne Branding Released" (Press release). Purdue University Fort Wayne. June 18, 2018 . Retrieved . June 21, 2018
"Merrimack College Accepts Invitation to Join the Northeast Conference" (Press release). Northeast Conference. September 10, 2018 . Retrieved . September 15, 2018
"Long Island University Announces Unification Into One LIU Division I Program" (Press release). LIU Brooklyn Blackbirds. October 3, 2018 . Retrieved . October 11, 2018
"One LIU: Frequently Asked Questions". Long Island University . Retrieved . October 11, 2018
"Sabrina Ionescu headlines AP preseason All-America team". ESPN.com. Associated Press. November 1, 2018 . Retrieved . November 3, 2018
Bembry, Jerry (November 13, 2018). "Rutgers' C. Vivian Stringer earns 1,000th career victory". ESPN.com . Retrieved . November 13, 2018
"Oregon's Sabrina Ionescu notches 12th career triple-double despite making only 1 field goal". ESPN.com. Associated Press. November 18, 2018 . Retrieved . November 20, 2018
"2018–19 Division I Men's Basketball Records" (PDF). NCAA. p. 4 . Retrieved . November 20, 2018
"CBU announcers D-1, WAC move" (Press release). California Baptist Lancers. January 13, 2017 . Retrieved . January 14, 2017
"Big South Adds Hampton University as Full Member" (Press release). Big South Conference. November 16, 2017 . Retrieved . November 17, 2017
"Liberty Moving to ASUN Conference for 2018-19 Season" (Press release). Liberty Athletics. May 17, 2018 . Retrieved . May 17, 2018
"ASUN Conference Introduces North Alabama as Newest League Member" (Press release). Atlantic Sun Conference. December 5, 2016 . Retrieved . December 7, 2016
"The Summit League Adds The University of North Dakota" (Press release). The Summit League. January 26, 2017 . Retrieved . January 27, 2017
"Big South to add USC Upstate as Full Member" (Press release). Big South Conference. November 15, 2017 . Retrieved . November 17, 2017
"Savannah State Plans Athletic Division Reclassification" (Press release). Savannah State Athletics. April 17, 2017 . Retrieved . May 22, 2017
Wright, Darrin (June 16, 2017). "Indiana, Purdue trustees officially finalize IPFW split". Fort Wayne, IN: WOWO . Retrieved . January 22, 2018
John Bridges (August 26, 2018). "New sports arena at McNeese set to open this fall". KPLC . Retrieved . September 10, 2018