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How Title IX Helped Save College Sports Teams Cut During the Pandemic

Schools slashed athletic programs amid financial strain. Students successfully campaigned to revive them by leaning on the now 50-year-old law. 

RF track and field sports Runner hurdles
Photographer: Paul Bradbury/OJO Images RF/Getty Images

After being axed in the pandemic’s early days, some college sports teams are being reinstated after student athletes showed the cuts made schools noncompliant with Title IX.  

The landmark 1972 law protects students from discrimination based on sex, including in college sports. If schools eliminate teams, it requires the proportion of men and women in their athletic programs to be roughly the same as the gender mix in their undergraduate populations. Colleges threatened with lawsuits during the pandemic failed this test.