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The Indiana Hoosiers celebrate after the NCAA Women's College Basketball game. Photo: Bobby Goddin/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Former female athletes are donating millions of dollars to build facilities, endow scholarships and support coaching positions at their alma maters, the New York Times reports.

Why it matters: Participation in women’s college sports teams is at an all time high, outnumbering men's sports for more than 20 years. And yet, the marketing and sponsorships from benefactors for college female teams has caught on slower than men's sports.

Background: Title IX required schools to provide equitable opportunities, including funding, for both male and female student athletes. The law helped kick-start varsity women’s teams with more resources and salaried coaches.

  • The NCAA doesn’t track philanthropy by gender, but universities do. And some athletic directors have said they’re experiencing an uptick in women asking how they can support these programs.

By the numbers: Today, 10,586 women’s teams compete in NCAA championship sports, compared to 9,159 men’s teams. Women’s NCAA teams increased by 64 in 2017, according to NCAA's most recent stats.

  • Turnout for national women's sports grew at an average of almost 40% since 2013, according to a study by sports marketing agency Two Circles.

Contributions to U.S. colleges and universities came to a record $46.73 billion in fiscal year 2018, according to a report from the Voluntary Support of Education survey by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.

  • At Indiana University: Women make up half of the philanthropic funding sources routed toward athletics — about $52 million. That money has been earmarked for a women's sports center focused on physical and mental wellness, nutrition and leadership and life skills.
  • At Drake University: Suzie Glazer Burt, a third-generation member of the school's board of trustees, gave the school's largest noncapital donation to the women's basketball program, totaling $5 million for the head coach’s salary, another coach hire and to help the team travel more by plane, the Des Moines Register reports.
  • At Queens University: Chief technology officer at Bank of America Cathy Bessant donated $1 million for a $2.4 million field hockey field house, the Charlotte Observer reports. Her daughter played field hockey and graduated from there in 2018.

The bottom line: 51% of personal wealth in the U.S. comes from women, based on data fro 2015, and is expected to keep growing.

  • Per NYT: "Sports philanthropy reflects that women who have made their own money, inherited fortunes or outlived their spouses are controlling more wealth than ever in the United States and are directing it to their favorite causes."

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Updated 37 mins ago - World

Skripal poisoning suspects linked to Czech blast, as country expels 18 Russians

Combined images released by British police in 2018 of Alexander Petrov (L) and Ruslan Boshirov, who are suspected of carrying out an attack in the in the southern English city of Salisbury using Novichok, a military-grade nerve agent, and also the2014 Czech depot explosion. Photo: Metropolitan Police via Getty Images

Czech police on Saturday connected two Russian men suspected of carrying out a poisoning attack in Salisbury, England, with a deadly ammunition depot explosion southeast of the capital, Prague, per Reuters.

Driving the news: Czech officials announced Saturday they're expelling 18 Russian diplomats they accuse of being involved in the blast in Vrbětice, AP notes. Czech police said later they're searching for two men carrying several passports — including two named Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov.

Indianapolis mass shooting suspect legally bought 2 guns, police say

Marion County Forensic Services vehicles are parked at the site of a mass shooting at a FedEx facility in Indianapolis, Indiana, on Friday. Photo: Jeff Dean/AFP via Getty Images

The suspected gunman in this week's mass shooting at a FedEx facility in Indianapolis legally purchased two assault rifles believed to have been used in the attack, police said late Saturday.

Of note: The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department's statement that Brandon Scott Hole, 19, bought the rifles last July and September comes a day after the FBI said in a statement to news outlets that a "shotgun was seized" from the suspect in March 2020 after his mother raised concerns about his mental health.

U.S. and China agree to take joint climate action

US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry waves as he arrives at the Elysee Presidential Palace on March 10, 2021 in Paris. Photo: Chesnot/Getty Images

Despite an increasingly tense relationship, the U.S. and China agreed Saturday to work together to tackle global climate change, including by "raising ambition" for emissions cuts during the 2020s — a key goal of the Biden administration.

Why it matters: The joint communique released Saturday evening commits the world's two largest emitters of greenhouse gases to work together to keep the most ambitious temperature target contained in the Paris Climate Agreement viable by potentially taking additional emissions cuts prior to 2030.

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