In an effort to adhere to the gender-equity requirements Title IX, Providence College announced Wednesday that it would drop three men’s sports – baseball, golf and tennis – and reallot those scholarships to women’s sports. Providence, a Big East rival of Georgetown, was forced to limit its sponsorship of men’s sports because its scholarship distribution did not represent the gender layout of the school. Fifty-nine percent of Providence College is female, while only 47 percent of scholarship athletes at the 3,600-student Catholic school were women. “This gender equity plan will enable Providence College to comply with Title IX on our own terms, meet NCAA certification requirements and improve the overall competitiveness of a number of our varsity teams,” said Providence College President Rev. Philip A. Smith in a press release. The 10.5 scholarships – seven in baseball, three in tennis and .5 in golf – will redistributed among the women’s sports. “Over the past 18 months, we vigorously pursued all options available to us,” said Providence’s Assistant Vice President for Athletics John M. Marinatto. “We looked at what was realistic given our gender balance and the national projections. It became apparent to us that we could not add funding to athletics and that reallocation was our only path.” Baseball has been played at Providence for 80 years, the longest of any sport at the school, which was founded in 1917. Among the alumni are Boston Red Sox second baseman Lou Merloni, who graduated in 1993. These are just the latest casualties for men sports since Title IX was upheld in Supreme Court decisions. Title IX prohibits universities from discriminating against gender, and that statute has been extended to include the NCAA. In 1997, Boston University dropped its football program due to Title IX restrictions, and other schools in recent years have dropped such men’s sports as wrestling.

Have a reaction to this article? Write a letter to the editor.

Comments are closed.