“Better Game, More Competitive”: Shaquille O’Neal Credits Angel Reese, Caitlin Clark for Watching Women’s NCAA Hoops Over Men’s

For Shaquille O’Neal, the NCAA Women’s tournament holds more intrigue this year than the men’s tournament.

The big fella believes that athletes like Caitlin Clark, JuJu Watkins, and his “niece” Angel Reese, have made women’s basketball a much better product than men’s basketball in recent times.

“Better Game, More Competitive”: Shaquille O’Neal Credits Angel Reese, Caitlin Clark for Watching Women’s NCAA Hoops Over Men’s

In a conversation with PEOPLE, Shaq discussed the deep impression women’s college hoops has left on him this year.

“I hate to say it, but the women players are kicking the men’s butts. You’ve got my Angel Reese. You’ve got all the girls from South Carolina. You’ve got JuJu Watkins, you’ve got Caitlin Clark.

It’s just a better game, just more competitive,” Shaquille O’Neal told PEOPLE.

The interest in women’s NCAA hoops has grown in massive proportions over the past two years or so.

On X, Fox Sports’ Michael Mulvihill revealed how women’s NCAA games drew 35,000 more viewers than men’s games on the Fox network.

As per Shaq, the women have earned the right to more eyeballs.

Shaq recalled the experience of watching women’s basketball at his alma-meter LSU and witnessing a full house cheering for Reese and Co.

For the Inside the NBA analyst, this rise in viewership is an inspirational development for young women and will immensely benefit the basketball fraternity.

“It was my first time ever seeing the girls’ game way more packed than the boys’ game, but it was actually a good feeling.

I’m happy for the young female athletes, and it’s inspiring to young girls,” added the former Lakers Center.

Since Shaq has followed women’s hoops closely this season, he has also rolled out a bracket predicting the outcomes.

Naturally, his alma-meter made the cut to a deep run in the intriguing list.

Shaquille O’Neal gives his picks for NCAAW March Madness

While he didn’t reveal his picks for the men’s leg, the former Magic Center enthusiastically disclosed his women’s bracket. For Shaq, the ideal final-four bracket should have LSU, Iowa, South Carolina, and USC.

South Carolina have the best odds to win this year, while LSU are the defending champions.

Meanwhile, Iowa has the talents of Caitlin Clark, who led them to the title game last year against LSU. USC has looked in terrific touch and is one of the contenders.

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