Maloney, Speier, and Sherrill Request Documents from NCAA Regarding Gender Inequity in College Sports
Washington, D.C. (July 7, 2021)—Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, senior Committee Member and Co-Chair of the Democratic Women’s Caucus Rep. Jackie Speier, and Rep. Mikie Sherrill sent a letter to Mark Emmert, President of the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA), requesting documents and information on NCAA’s disparate treatment of men’s and women’s sporting events and the Association’s ongoing reviews of gender equity across its championship programs.
Last week, NCAA’s 2021 tournament season came to a close with the culmination of the Men’s College World Series championship. Throughout this year’s tournament season, players and coaches have shared experiences with longstanding gender inequities in NCAA’s athletics programming.
“Reports of other disparities, including in coronavirus safety protocols and in branding and promotion practices, have raised serious questions about how longstanding NCAA organizational decisions have perpetuated gender inequities in collegiate athletics,” the Members wrote. “These troubling reports suggest the full extent of the unequal treatment caused by NCAA’s policies and practices still may not be known.”
On March 24, 2021, Chairwoman Maloney highlighted the inequities in NCAA’s men’s and women’s Division I NCAA basketball tournaments at the Oversight Committee’s Equal Pay Day hearing, stating: “The fact that these disparities existed in the first place, I believe, is insulting and inexcusable.”
On March 25, 2021, Rep. Sherril led 37 Members of Congress in sending a letter to NCAA President Mark Emmert expressing deep concerns and seeking more information about gender disparities in this year’s NCAA championship tournaments
In reply, Mr. Emmert stated that NCAA had “begun to immediately address and rectify these issues,” citing both an internal NCAA review and the retention of a law firm to conduct a “comprehensive, thorough and external review of gender equity issues in connection with the NCAA.”
On June 29, 2021, Rep. Speier and Rep. Sherrill led Members in introducing a resolution to affirm that NCAA is subject to Title IX and must take action to prevent sex discrimination in its activities and programs.
“By failing to invest in and promote women’s athletics programs in the way it does for men, NCAA prevents women’s sports from reaching their full potential,” the Members added.
The Members are requesting a briefing from NCAA by July 21, 2021, on the full scope of gender disparities across its programs, NCAA’s progress in addressing these disparities, and the actions the Association plans to take to eliminate such disparities in the future.
The Members are also seeking documents relating to NCAA’s investments in its women’s and men’s athletics programs and activities, including details on NCAA’s budgets and operations, media contracts, and promotional efforts for the men’s and women’s 2021 tournaments.
Click here to read the letter.