The Holy Cross women's basketball team celebrates.
Photo by Matthew J. Lee/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

NCAA Rule Forces No. 15 Holy Cross on Bus Ride to Women's Tournament, Social Media Responds

Whether it's a men's or women's team, every college basketball player aspires to make it to the NCAA Tournament. This tournament provides you with a chance to not only win a title but increase your profile for the professional league.

As a team in the tournament, you'd want your players to travel as comfortably — perhaps by a chartered flight — to eliminate any potential reason for poor performance.

Well, the Holy Cross women's team may have to settle for, uh, a bus or Amtrak.

While they're a No. 15 seed and will likely get eliminated by No. 2 Maryland, you'd like to at least provide a team that earned its way into the tournament with the best possible travel arrangements — it deserves that much.

As Jeff Goodman — a basketball analyst formerly of ESPN, CBS and Fox — points out, Holy Cross might have to stomach a not-so-enjoyable 393-mile bus ride.

Why Holy Cross Needs To Travel By Bus

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So why does a team that made the NCAA Tournament need to take a bus to the venue?

Well, the NCAA has a rule in which it'll only charter a flight for a team to travel if it's 400 miles or more. As Goodman points out, it used to be 350 miles.

Since Holy Cross is 393 miles from College Park, Maryland, the NCAA won't pay. The Charleston men's team is facing a similar dilemma with a 380-mile trek ahead of them.

To add insult to injury, Holy Cross is located in Worcester, Massachusetts. As someone who lives just over an hour away from the campus, I know there's a brutal snowstorm happening, which will only slow down an already-arduous 393-mile journey.

As Twitter user Tommy Beer mentions, Holy Cross charges students nearly $75,000 per year and has an endowment that's worth $1 billion. As Mr. Beer says, why isn't the school just footing the bill out of pocket to ensure their women's team is as comfortable as possible before their difficult No. 15 vs. No. 2 matchup?

With these tweets, it should come as no surprise that there's not a single reply supporting the NCAA.

Due to the storm, commercial flights are almost certainly grounded — as I said, it's brutal out here. That said, a nearby NFL owner could get some easy positive PR by offering up a plane ride — perhaps New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft.

The Holy Cross women's team is a 24.5-point underdog against Maryland. But come on, let's at least have a system in place that allows athletes to travel to games as comfortably as possible, especially for the NCAA Tournament.

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