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NCAA: Disparities Persist for Women in Athletics

June 23, 2017

National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I institutions spend about double on their men’s teams what they do on women’s sports, according to a new report the association released this week to mark the 45th anniversary of the federal law prohibiting gender discrimination.

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 reaches its 45th year on Friday. The law traditionally focused on equity in athletics -- though that has shifted in recent years to include protections against sexual violence and assault.

About 42 percent of Division I college and university athletic funding is channeled to men’s sports and 21 percent to women’s -- the NCAA considers about 36 percent of the money unallocated or coed.

The gap in spending at Division II and Division III institutions is much smaller, but it still exists.

Little progress has been made diversifying coaching staffs and the leadership of athletics departments, the report shows.

In 1996, nearly 43 percent of women’s teams were led by a female head coach -- by 2016 that percentage had dropped to about 40 percent.

On women’s teams, the female head coaches were, and remain, overwhelmingly white.

About 92 percent of head coaches of women’s teams were white women 20 years ago, and in 2016, about 86 percent were white women.

Bernard Franklin, NCAA executive vice president of education and community engagement and chief inclusion officer, released a statement about the report on Wednesday.

“While it is very encouraging to see progress has been made over the last 45 years with respect to the federal law Title IX and opportunities for women, the data also shows that there is still much to be done to increase equity and diversity, and to create a more balanced scenario in intercollegiate athletics for our student athletes and administrators. The report provides our membership and others who have influence with an up-to-date summary on where we can place our resources and support. I encourage all college presidents, athletics directors and conference commissioners to read this report and determine where their actions and voice can be best utilized in the support and progression for female administrators and our student athletes both now and in the future.”

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Jeremy Bauer-Wolf

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