How Title IX has shaped women’s athletics 50 years after its passage

The passage of Title IX in 1972 radically transformed women's athletics over the next 50 years. Here's a look at what has mattered, and what still needs improvement.

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Sports

June 7, 2022 - 1:37 PM

Members of the UConn women's rowing team rally in downtown Storrs on April 19 in an effort to save the program, in 2021. The team eventually filed a Title IX complaint. Photo by Brad Horrigan / Hartford Courant / TNS

When Title IX of the Education Amendments was signed into law on June 23, 1972, the text of the legislation said, “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”

If one reads the law decades later, it’s understandable to wonder if something might be missing from it. What is now widely regarded as the most transformative measure in the history of women’s athletics in the United Statescontains no mention of sports.

Its impact on the fields and courts of competition, though, has been pervasive.

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