Get it Right is an occasional feature created to provide accurate information on NCAA-related issues.
The College Sports Council continues to pick and choose data to serve its own purposes and mislead the general public, this time in college tennis.
CSC claim: Title IX is to blame for supposedly shrinking opportunities in college athletics.
Fact: The CSC does not look at overall opportunities within the NCAA and narrows the scope of its “reports” to reflect its own agenda. A full view of the data reveals similar participation for women’s and men’s tennis student-athletes and that participation opportunities have, in fact, grown for both female and male student-athletes across the NCAA.
In 1981-82, there were 610 women’s tennis teams in the NCAA, with 6,599 women competing. In 2008-09, there were 900 women’s tennis teams and 8,719 women participants.
For men, there were 690 tennis teams and 7,340 men competing in 1981-82. Those numbers grew to 749 teams and 7,960 men participating in 2008-09.
Even from 1996-97 – the year used in the CSC’s report – women’s tennis teams grew overall by 45 teams and 403 women competing while men’s teams grew by 18 teams and 31 participants.
Tennis continues to be a popular sport around the world and on our campuses. There is no evidence that the relatively minor changes overall in tennis participation are related to Title IX.