March Madness, the annual monthlong bracket of NCAA Division I basketball, starts this week. The men's First Four face off today and the women's First Four meet on the court Wednesday.

This year, the women's March Madness tickets sold out faster than the men's. NBC Sports Boston anchor Trenni Casey weighed in on the feat, explaining the differences in the tournaments.

"The way the women's tournament is run is different than the way the men's tournament is run," Casey said on Boston Public Radio on Tuesday.

Unlike the men's teams which play in neutral territory, the top seeds of women's teams will get to play their games at home, she said. So hosting the first- and second-round games play a role in the quickness of ticket sales. However, Casey explained that it is still monumental.

"They still sold out in 30 minutes, like every single seat for every single session," she said.

Now some tickets are being sold on secondary markets for around $500, she said.

In addition to home games boosting sales, the 2024 women's brackets have two big household names to draw in fans: Caitlin Clark, the Iowa guard who broke multiple scoring records this year; and Angel Reese, who won the NCAA championship with LSU last year.

"They were both sort of in each other's faces at times during that national championship game," Casey said. "They could actually meet, I think, sooner than the Final Four. I think they could meet in round 16 or eight this time."

But out of the 68 women's teams, who will take home the trophy? Casey said the favorite now is the South Carolina Gamecocks, with star Kamilla Cardoso.

"[The team is] undefeated for the second year in a row going into the NCAA tournament," Casey said.

The first two women's games are Wednesday, March 20:

  • Presbyterian Blue Hose at Sacred Heart Pioneers at 7 p.m. EDT
  • Columbia Lions at Vanderbilt Commodores at 9 p.m. EDT