Friday, July 23, 2010

Federal judge rules that cheerleading is not a sport

Judge Stefan R. Underhill says in his 95-page opinion, "I hold that the University's competitive cheerleading team does not qualify as a varsity sport for the purposes of Title IX."

Quinnipiac University (in Connecticut) was trying to include cheerleaders in its tally of female athletes to show that it had provided equal athletic opportunities to women and men. The judge didn't buy it and ruled that the University had "discriminated on the basis of sex during the 2009-10 academic year by failing to provide
equal athletic participation opportunities for women."

To those cheerleaders who feel that cheerleading is a sport, the judge provides this bit of hope: "Competitive cheer may, some time in the future, qualify as a sport under Title IX; today, however, the activity is still too underdeveloped and disorganized to be treated as offering genuine varsity athletic participation opportunities for students."

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