The NCAA Women’s College World Series in softball receives major exposure every year around this time as the games are broadcast on the various ESPN channels. Softball is played at the collegiate level due to Title IX legislation that was created in 1972. As a majority of the colleges throughout the USA have softball as a sport, the wording of the legislation suggests that every college should have a softball team.
“Title IX requires that women and men be provided equitable opportunities to participate in sports. Title IX does not require institutions to offer identical sports but an equal opportunity to play;” (NCAA.org)
For example, every NCAA Division I school has a men’s basketball team. Since equitable opportunities in that sport must be provided, each school has a women’s basketball team. In the Power Five conferences (Big Ten, Big XII, Pac-12, SEC, ACC), all of the teams have a baseball team. The closest sport equitable to baseball for women would be softball.
However, after looking at the softball standings from this year, there are ten universities that do not have softball as a sport at their establishments: Wake Forest, Clemson, Miami (FL), West Virginia, Texas Christian, Kansas State, Colorado, USC, Washington State, and Vanderbilt.
No excuses can be made as to why these 10 schools do not have softball as a sport because these ten universities are actually defying federal legislation. Money is definitely not an issue at these colleges as all of these universities created at least $60 million in revenue. They have more than enough money to allocate for a stadium, to pay for coaches, and to provide scholarships.
Yet, these ten colleges continue to gripe and to whine when asked why they do not have a softball team for the ladies. Here is the complaint made by administration at Vanderbilt. Vanderbilt uses the excuse that there is not enough room to build a softball stadium along with parking space on campus. To go around that excuse, buy some land near campus and build a softball stadium.
I do not understand why the US government allows for these ten universities to defy legislation and to discredit the abilities of women. Every college should have a softball team.