Getting WVU Back on Track

A recent article in The Daily Athenaeum, West Virginia University’s student newspaper, sheds light on how gender quotas have affected multiple men’s teams at WVU and makes the case for bringing back men’s distance running now that WVU is headed to the Big 12 conference. In 2003, the university axed men’s cross country, track, indoor track, tennis and coed rifle, and as a result, eliminated many opportunities for men.

Let’s hope that administrators at WVU realize the full impact of cutting 5 men’s teams 8 years ago — perpetuating gender inequality by denying men opportunities to play their sports — and reinstate those teams as quickly as possible.

The article explains:

The new conference will let WVU take advantage of a prestigious distance program that never deserved to be eliminated.

In fact, the origins of men’s cross country and track cuts never had anything to do with the quality of the programs.

In 2003, WVU cut five sports teams: men’s cross country, track, indoor track, tennis and coed rifle. Budget and Title IX concerns motivated these cuts, though it seems Title IX had far more of an influence.

Title IX threatens public funding to demand universities have men’s and women’s sports opportunities proportional to their enrollment of each sex.

This was intended to increase athletic participation for women, but the arbitrary quota has resulted in the elimination of hundreds of flourishing low-budget, low-revenue men’s teams. It’s cheaper to cut men’s teams to shift the balance than to add women’s teams.

WVU’s 2003 cuts eliminated 54 male athletes and two female athletes. A cut like this increases the female-to-male athlete ratio on paper without adding any new women’s athletic opportunities.

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