|Champions Tennessee (6th title)|
|Start date 1998|
Finals site Kemper Arena
|Runner-up Louisiana Tech (6th title game)|
Semifinalists NC State (1st Final Four) Arkansas (1st Final Four)
Similar 1996 NCAA Division I, 2002 NCAA Division I, 1995 NCAA Division I, 2000 NCAA Division I, 2004 NCAA Division I
The 1998 NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Tournament began on March 13, 1998, and concluded on March 29, 1998, when Tennessee won the national title. The Final Four was held at Kemper Arena in Kansas City, Missouri, on March 27–29, 1998. Tennessee, Louisiana Tech, NC State, and Arkansas qualified to the Final Four. Tennessee and Louisiana Tech won their semi-final Final Four matchups and continued on to the championship. Tennessee defeated Louisiana Tech 93-75 to take their sixth title, and complete an undefeated season (39-0).
- Tournament records
- Qualifying teams automatic
- Qualifying teams at large
- Bids by conference
- First and second rounds
- Regionals and Final Four
- Bids by state
- West Region
- Final Four Kansas City Missouri
- Record by conference
- All Tournament Team
- Game Officials
For the first time in the men's or women's tournament, two teams, Tennessee and Liberty, entered the tournament unbeaten (this feat was replicated in 2014 by the women's teams from Connecticut and Notre Dame). In the Mideast Regional, the Lady Vols blew out Liberty 102-58. However, in the West Regional, the expected 1-16 blowout did not happen. In that matchup, Harvard defeated an injury-plagued #1 seed Stanford on its home court 71-67, the only time in the men's or women's tournament that a 16 has ever beaten a 1. In addition, 9th-seeded Arkansas made the final four, the highest seed ever to do so in the women's tournament.
Qualifying teams - automatic
Sixty-four teams were selected to participate in the 1998 NCAA Tournament. Thirty conferences were eligible for an automatic bid to the 1998 NCAA tournament.
Qualifying teams - at-large
Thirty-four additional teams were selected to complete the sixty-four invitations.
Bids by conference
Thirty conferences earned an automatic bid. In nineteen cases, the automatic bid was the only representative from the conference. Thirty-four additional at-large teams were selected from eleven of the conferences.
First and second rounds
In 1998, the field remained at 64 teams. The teams were seeded, and assigned to four geographic regions, with seeds 1-16 in each region. In Round 1, seeds 1 and 16 faced each other, as well as seeds 2 and 15, seeds 3 and 14, seeds 4 and 13, seeds 5 and 12, seeds 6 and 11, seeds 7 and 10, and seeds 8 and 9. In the first two rounds, the top four seeds were given the opportunity to host the first round game. In all cases, the higher seed accepted the opportunity.
The following table lists the region, host school, venue and the sixteen first and second round locations:
Regionals and Final Four
The Regionals, named for the general location, were held from March 20 to March 23 at these sites:
Each regional winner advanced to the Final Four held March 27 and March 29 in Kansas City, Missouri, at the Kemper Arena
Bids by state
The sixty-four teams came from thirty-four states, plus Washington, D.C. Four states, California, Tennessee, Virginia and North Carolina each had the most teams with four bids. Sixteen states did not have any teams receiving bids.
Final Four - Kansas City, Missouri
E-East; ME-Mideast; MW-Midwest; W-West.
Record by conference
Sixteen conferences had more than one bid, or at least one win in NCAA Tournament play:
Fourteen conferences went 0-1: America East, Big Sky Conference, Big South Conference, Horizon League, MAAC, MAC, MEAC, Northeast Conference, Ohio Valley Conference, Patriot League, Southern Conference, Southland, SWAC, and West Coast Conference