Time to change Title IX’s three-prong test

Beau Dure
7 min readJun 26, 2022

At The Guardian last week, I had a story on Title IX’s history and impact. It also delves into the issues the law — in this case, strictly the sports aspect of what was intended to be about education — will face in the future.

I’d also recommend some excellent work at USA TODAY, starting with this timeline that is focused on but not limited to sports:

Other parts of their anniversary investigations are behind a paywall, though if you’re an Apple News subscriber, you can find the stories there:

It’s great to see my old paper revving up its investigative and analytical work. Almost makes me wish I was still there. Almost.

But enough about me and my career decisions. Let’s talk about how Title IX should be better.

For starters, we’re focusing on the wrong thing. Specifically, the gap between roster spots available for men and roster spots available to women. From one of the USA TODAY stories:

None was larger than the University of North Carolina, though. It would need to add 395 female roster spots, the analysis found.

I’m not predisposed to praise UNC’s sports program. I went to its arch-rival.

But … seriously?

The numbers are correct, I’m sure. But they show how Title IX watchdoggery is really missing the boat.

In the 2021–22 academic year, North Carolina’s women went unbeaten in lacrosse to claim their third national championship. The tennis team reached the NCAA semis after losing a streak of ACC titles going back 2015. The nine-time champion field hockey team fell short of the Final Four for the first…

Beau Dure

Author of sports books, slayer of false narratives, player of music