Simpson basketball potential hosts for first/second round of NCAA tournament


by Aaron Young

After securing its sixth straight conference title and being recently ranked No. 1 in the West region, the Simpson College women’s basketball team has their eyes, mind and game ready for post-season action.

The Storm may even have a chance in hosting the first and second rounds of the Division III NCAA Tournament come March with how extraordinary this season has been for the squad.

As far as site selection goes, it is the same for all institutions at any level, according to Robin Hamilton, Associate Athletic Director Senior Woman Administrator of Athletics at the University of Puget Sound and Chair of the NCAA Division III Women’s Basketball Championship Committee.

“First of all there’s an online bid process – just paper work that needs to be done,” said Hamilton. “Another thing that we look at is the quality and availability of the facility as well as other accommodations we might need in the area. Geographic location may include such factors as accessibility, transportation costs, that type of thing.”

Indianola is only twelve miles south of Des Moines, the largest city and state capital of Iowa. Hamilton does not know if this plays a big factor, but has some importance.

“It’s just a matter of being able to get teams in your region there within 500 miles, which is what the eligibility for driving teams to a spot,” Hamilton said.

Seeding and seeing where the team is heading into the tournament is also a huge key that goes into consideration when choosing a site. With Simpson being ranked atop the West regional rankings and posting a perfect 16-0 record in the region, so far so good.

Attendance history is one of the final things the selection committee looks at during the process.

“It’s important because we like for our teams to play in front of large crowds whenever possible,” Hamilton said.

According to, the Storm attracted 572 fans in a 66-57 victory over Wartburg College on Jan. 12 in Cowles Fieldhouse – the most recorded for all home games during the season.

Hamilton said that to her understanding, all of these factors are standard and are applied to all NCAA athletics. She has also been keeping tabs on the Storm all season long.

“Simpson is certainly a team we’ve got our eyes on for all kinds of things in terms of moving forward, “Hamilton said. “We wish you guys the best of luck.”

Simpson College (21-1, 11-0 IIAC) travel to Dubuque as they take on Loras College (16-6, 6-5) in conference play. Tip-off is set for 2 p.m. Saturday.