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2021 Top Great Lakes Region Women's D1 Basketball Schools

44 Colleges
$33,891 Avg Tuition & Fees*
50% Avg 4-Year Grad Rate*

Student athletes have lots of options to chooose from today when trying to decide which college to attend. Our mission at College Factual is to arm you with as much information as we can to help you make that decision. Our Best Colleges for Division I Women's Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking is one tool we have developed to help in this regard.

We analyzed 44 colleges and universities across the Great Lakes Region to determine which were the best for D1 Women's Basketball athletes in the Great Lakes Region. Our ranking is based on several objective factors, including the school's overall quality and the athletic competitiveness of the school. We steer clear of subjective measures since they don't give a clear picture when determining how one school compares to another. So, even if a school has a great team, it won't place well if it is also considered a low quality college or university.

See what other factors we include in our ranking methodology.

Customizing Your List

Since one ranking on its own is not enough to give you a complete understanding of your educational options, you can refine this list by location. We've also developed a number of other tools and rankings based on other factors. These other rankings highlight colleges that excel in other factors such as value or diversity as well as schools that excel in serving different groups of students such as online students or returnings adults.

One of our other unique offerings is College Combat. This tool lets you build your own customized comparisons utilizing the factors that are most important to you. Test it out by comparing your favorite schools against others you are considering, or bookmark the tool so you can experiment with it later.

Top Colleges in the Great Lakes Region for D1 Women's Basketball athletes in the Great Lakes Region

See which schools came out on top of our ranking:

#1

University of Notre Dame

Notre Dame, Indiana
#2 in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

Our analysis found University of Notre Dame to be the best school for D1 Women’s Basketball athletes in the Great Lakes Region in this year’s ranking. Notre Dame is a private not-for-profit institution located in Notre Dame, Indiana. The school has a fairly large population, and it awarded 2,642 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The D1 Women’s Basketball team at Notre Dame brought home $2,017,752 in revenue in a single year. The great academic progress rate of 995 shows that team members perform well in the classroom, too.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 98%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. Notre Dame also made our overall quality list, coming in at #2.

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#2

Northwestern University

Evanston, Illinois
#1 in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend Northwestern University. It ranked #2 on our 2021 Best Colleges for D1 Women’s Basketball athletes in the Great Lakes Region list. Northwestern is a private not-for-profit institution located in Evanston, Illinois. The school has a large population, and it awarded 2,770 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The D1 Women’s Basketball team at Northwestern brought home $227,757 in revenue in a single year. With a perfect academic progress rate of 1000, the team is showing that they know how to hit the books, too.

The impressive student-to-faculty ratio of 6 to 1 means that students may have more opportunities to work more closely with their professors than they would at other schools. Northwestern did well in our overall quality rankings, too. It placed #1 on our overall quality list.

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#3

Marquette University

Milwaukee, Wisconsin
#20 in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

A rank of #3 on our list means Marquette University is a great place for D1 Women’s Basketball athletes in the Great Lakes Region working on their bachelor’s degree. This fairly large private not-for-profit school is located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and it awarded 2,204 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Marquette brought in $4,572,038 while tallying up $4,427,322 in expenses for its D1 Women’s Basketball team. So, the team made money for the school, bringing in $144,716 in profit. The great academic progress rate of 990 shows that team members perform well in the classroom, too.

With a freshman retention rate of 89%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. On top of its placing in this ranking, Marquette also did well on our overall quality list. It’s in the top 10% of all schools reviewed in this analysis.

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#4

DePaul University

Chicago, Illinois
Top 20% in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

Out of the 44 schools in the Great Lakes Region that were part of this year’s ranking, DePaul University landed the #4 spot on the list. DePaul is located in Chicago, Illinois and, has a large student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 3,518 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergraduates.

The D1 Women’s Basketball team at DePaul brought home $3,462,918 in revenue in a single year. The team had a perfect academic progress rate of 1000.

In addition to its great ranking here, DePaul is in the top 20% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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#25 in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

The excellent sports programs at Ohio State University - Main Campus helped the school earn the #5 place on this year’s ranking of the best schools for D1 Women’s Basketball athletes in the Great Lakes Region. Located in Columbus, Ohio, the large public school awarded 11,596 diplomas to qualified bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at Ohio State took home $794,802 in revenue.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 94%. Ohio State also claimed a spot on our overall quality list. It’s in the top 10% of all schools in this category.

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#6

University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, Michigan
#4 in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

University of Michigan - Ann Arbor came in at #6 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Ann Arbor, Michigan is the setting for this large institution of higher learning. The public school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 7,815 students in 2018-2019.

The D1 Women’s Basketball team at U-M brought home $466,499 in revenue in a single year.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 97%. In addition to its Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking, and one of the reasons why the school is on the list, U-M is ranked #4 for overall quality in the Great Lakes Region .

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#7

Purdue University - Main Campus

West Lafayette, Indiana
#9 in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

Purdue University - Main Campus landed the #7 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. This large public school is located in West Lafayette, Indiana, and it awarded 7,568 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Purdue brought in $6,843,854 while tallying up $4,242,993 in expenses for its D1 Women’s Basketball team. So, the team made money for the school, bringing in $2,600,861 in profit.

With a freshman retention rate of 91%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. In addition to its great ranking here, Purdue is in the top 5% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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#8

Indiana University - Bloomington

Bloomington, Indiana
#17 in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

Indiana University - Bloomington came in at #8 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Located in Bloomington, Indiana, the large public school handed out 7,952 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at IU Bloomington took home $307,989 in revenue. The team has a great academic progress rate of 980, signifying that team members care about their grades.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 91%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. As a testament to the quality of education it offers, IU Bloomington also is in the top 10% of our overall quality ranking.

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#9

Michigan State University

East Lansing, Michigan
#12 in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

With a ranking of #9, Michigan State University did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Michigan State is located in East Lansing, Michigan and, has a large student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 8,997 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergraduates.

On the financial side of things, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at Michigan State made $668,938 in revenue. The team has a respectable academic progress rate of 953.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 91%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. On top of its placing in this ranking, Michigan State also did well on our overall quality list. It’s in the top 5% of all schools reviewed in this analysis.

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#10

University of Dayton

Dayton, Ohio
#21 in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

University of Dayton landed the #10 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Dayton, Ohio is the setting for this fairly large institution of higher learning. The private not-for-profit school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 2,167 students in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at UDayton took home $1,428,038 in revenue. The team has a great academic progress rate of 996, signifying that team members care about their grades.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 90%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year. UDayton excels when it comes to quality. It’s ranked in the top 10% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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Ohio University - Athens Campus ranked #11 on this year’s Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region list. Located in Athens, Ohio, the large public school handed out 7,349 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The D1 Women’s Basketball team at OHIO Athens brought home $1,702,432 in revenue in a single year.

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#12

University of Evansville

Evansville, Indiana
Top 20% in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

University of Evansville came in at #12 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. University of Evansville is a small private not-for-profit school located in Evansville, Indiana that handed out 504 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at UE took home $1,456,245 in revenue. The academic progress rate of the team is 957.

UE also claimed a spot on our overall quality list. It’s in the top 20% of all schools in this category.

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#13

Central Michigan University

Mount Pleasant, Michigan

With a ranking of #13, Central Michigan University did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Central Michigan is located in Mount Pleasant, Michigan and, has a fairly large student population. In 2018-2019, this school awarded 4,343 bachelor’s degrees to qualified undergraduates.

On the financial side of things, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at Central Michigan made $1,833,286 in revenue. The team has a great academic progress rate of 996, signifying that team members care about their grades.

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Top 25% in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

University of Cincinnati - Main Campus did quite well in the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking, coming in at #14. Cincinnati, Ohio is the setting for this large institution of higher learning. The public school handed out bachelor’s degrees to 6,175 students in 2018-2019.

The D1 Women’s Basketball team at UC brought home $2,790,939 in revenue in a single year. The team has a great academic progress rate of 991, signifying that team members care about their grades.

The school has an excellent freshman retention rate of 86%, which means students like the school well enough to return for a second year.

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#15

Bradley University

Peoria, Illinois
Top 15% in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

Bradley University landed the #15 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Bradley is a medium-sized private not-for-profit school situated in Peoria, Illinois. It awarded 1,048 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

On the financial side of things, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at Bradley made $1,589,763 in revenue. The great academic progress rate of 995 shows that team members perform well in the classroom, too.

With a freshman retention rate of 86%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. As a testament to the quality of education it offers, Bradley also is in the top 15% of our overall quality ranking.

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#16

University of Toledo

Toledo, Ohio

University of Toledo ranked #16 on this year’s Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region list. Located in Toledo, Ohio, the fairly large public school awarded 3,077 diplomas to qualified bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

The D1 Women’s Basketball team at University of Toledo brought home $2,299,814 in revenue in a single year. The team members aren’t slouches in the classroom either, since the team academic progress rate is an excellent 996.

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#17

University of Wisconsin - Madison

Madison, Wisconsin
#8 in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

University of Wisconsin - Madison landed the #17 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Located in Madison, Wisconsin, the large public school awarded 8,915 diplomas to qualified bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

On the financial side of things, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at UW - Madison made $2,070,214 in revenue. The great academic progress rate of 987 shows that team members perform well in the classroom, too.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 95%. As a testament to the quality of education it offers, UW - Madison also is in the top 5% of our overall quality ranking.

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Indiana University - Purdue University - Indianapolis landed the #18 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Located in Indianapolis, Indiana, the large public school awarded 4,420 diplomas to qualified bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at IUPUI took home $1,286,185 in revenue. The great academic progress rate of 995 shows that team members perform well in the classroom, too.

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#11 in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign landed the #19 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Located in Champaign, Illinois, the large public school awarded 8,983 diplomas to qualified bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at UIUC took home $654,776 in revenue. The team has a great academic progress rate of 995, signifying that team members care about their grades.

With a freshman retention rate of 92%, the school does an excellent job of retaining its students. UIUC excels when it comes to quality. It’s ranked in the top 5% of all schools on our overall quality list.

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#19

Ball State University

Muncie, Indiana

Ball State University landed the #19 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Ball State is a large public school situated in Muncie, Indiana. It awarded 3,621 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

The D1 Women’s Basketball team at Ball State brought home $1,525,995 in revenue in a single year. The team has a great academic progress rate of 986, signifying that team members care about their grades.

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#21

Miami University - Oxford

Oxford, Ohio
Top 15% in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

With a ranking of #21, Miami University - Oxford did quite well on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Miami University - Oxford is a fairly large public school situated in Oxford, Ohio. It awarded 5,139 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

On the financial side of things, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at Miami University - Oxford made $1,675,889 in revenue. With a perfect academic progress rate of 1000, the team is showing that they know how to hit the books, too.

Students who start out at the school are likely to stick around. The freshman retention rate is 91%. As a testament to the quality of education it offers, Miami University - Oxford also is in the top 15% of our overall quality ranking.

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#22

Western Michigan University

Kalamazoo, Michigan

Western Michigan University landed the #22 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. WMU is a large public school situated in Kalamazoo, Michigan. It awarded 3,824 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at WMU took home $1,628,534 in revenue. The great academic progress rate of 985 shows that team members perform well in the classroom, too.

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#23

Northern Illinois University

Dekalb, Illinois

Northern Illinois University did quite well in the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking, coming in at #23. NIU is a public institution located in Dekalb, Illinois. The school has a fairly large population, and it awarded 3,441 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

On the financial side of things, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at NIU made $1,392,495 in revenue. The great academic progress rate of 991 shows that team members perform well in the classroom, too.

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#24

Valparaiso University

Valparaiso, Indiana
Top 25% in Quality in the Great Lakes Region

Valparaiso University came in at #24 in this year’s edition of the Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Valpo is a private not-for-profit institution located in Valparaiso, Indiana. The school has a small population, and it awarded 893 bachelor’s degrees in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at Valpo took home $1,453,033 in revenue. The team members aren’t slouches in the classroom either, since the team academic progress rate is an excellent 995.

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#25

Western Illinois University

Macomb, Illinois

Western Illinois University landed the #25 spot on the 2021 Best Colleges for Division I Women’s Basketball in the Great Lakes Region ranking. Located in Macomb, Illinois, the medium-sized public school awarded 1,785 diplomas to qualified bachelor’s degree students in 2018-2019.

Speaking financially, the D1 Women’s Basketball team at WIU took home $975,303 in revenue. The team has a great academic progress rate of 995, signifying that team members care about their grades.

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Notes and References

Footnotes

*Avg Tuition and Fees and Avg 4-Year Grad Rate are for the top 25 schools only.

References

  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of our data about colleges.
  • Revenue and expense information comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s Equity in Athletics Data Analysis (EADA) website.
  • The academic progress rate (APR) of each team was made available by the NCAA.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).
  • Information about the national average student loan default rate is from the U.S. Department of Education and refers to data about the 2016 borrower cohort tracking period for which the cohort default rate (CDR) was 10.1%.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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