NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Sports Programs Are Casualties Of Title IX

July 15, 1999

Colleges and universities are dropping men's sports programs right and left in an effort to comply with Title IX -- the 1972 federal law forbidding sex discrimination in education. Critics observe that the law has turned college sports into a quota system.

  • Having dropped men's wrestling in 1996 and added women's lacrosse this year, Central Connecticut State University has been warned by the Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights that it must find 20 more female athletes to bring the proportion of women athletes into line with the school's male-female ratio -- since 49 percent of participants in sports are women, but women are 51 percent of student enrollment.
  • Another casualty of Title IX has been Providence College's championship men's baseball team, which was eliminated this year along with men's tennis and golf in order to increase the school's female athlete participation to match its 57 percent female student body.
  • At Miami University of Ohio, men's wrestling, soccer and tennis were dropped last month for the same reasons.
  • Boston College has been forced to drop men's lacrosse, water polo and wrestling.

According to the General Accounting Office, between 1985 and 1997 opportunities for women rose by 16 percent -- while opportunities for men fell by 12 percent. The Independent Women's Forum, working with several athletic organizations, has documented the loss of more than 350 men's teams since 1992.

Source: Jessica Gavora and Kimberly Schuld (both of the Independent Women's Forum), "Title IX Didn't Score the Winning Goal," Wall Street Journal, July 15, 1999.


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