It has been more than 50 years since Title IX shifted the paradigm of women’s college basketball. The landmark gender equity law passed in 1972, part of the Education Amendments of that year. Title IX banned sex discrimination in federally funded education programs, paving the way for women to be granted positions in admissions, teaching, individual classes and more.
Title IX certainly had broader goals than changing how sports were taught and coached in these universities, but that has undeniably been one of its biggest areas of impact.
Title IX had instant impacts, as 1978 was already seeing six times as many high school girls participating in sports, according to a report from Time magazine. The rise in high school sports participation also led to a rise in participation in college sports, and with the rise in female athletes came a rise of female coaches.
These women have led teams to wonderful successes, including championships and every now and then, an undefeated season.
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Dawn Staley is one of those coaches. Last year was an incredible year for her and the South Carolina Gamecocks. They lost only a couple of games last season, but when it came time to play and it really counted, her team won their six NCAA Tournament games, leading them to the National Championship.
This year has been a continuation of the dominance for Staley and the Gamecocks, as they ran through the regular season undefeated. Think what a juggernaut the Gamecocks would be across North Carolina betting apps.
Staley has been the face of a shift in women’s college basketball as the sport is growing, and fast. With that growth has come newfound investment into the sport, including coaching salaries.
In 2011-12 Pat Summitt, herself a holder of an undefeated season, was making just under $2 million a season as the nation’s highest paid coach. Now two coaches, including Staley, are making more than $3 million a year, with 11 making at least seven figures.
Those That Came Before
With Staley enjoying such great success, BetCarolina.com decided to look at the other women who have helped transform college basketball by leading their teams to undefeated seasons. The aforementioned Summitt has done so, leading Tennessee to a perfect record in 1997-98. More than ten years prior, Jody Conradt was the first to accomplish the feat with Texas in 1985-86. Then in 2011-12, Baylor went undefeated under the guidance of head coach Kim Mulkey.
There have been six other instances of women’s NCAA teams going undefeated, all of them by UConn under male head coach Geno Auriemma. A notable feat for sure, but dwarfed by the impact of all the incredible women who have enjoyed the successes and opportunities that the passing of Title IX has provided.
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