- The Washington Times - Friday, June 21, 2002

Title IX, inadvertent or not, has undermined the development of women's basketball in America.
This is one of the most telling indictments of Title IX, considering women's basketball has become the flagship program of the 1972 federal law.
The legislation hurts those it purports to help. Title IX's adherents fail to note that in their feel-good pronouncements. It does not jibe with their agenda, which is dishonest on so many levels.
This is not to bleed for those non-revenue men's sports that have been eliminated in the last decade. Take it from one who participated in a non-revenue sport in college.
The experience, however enjoyable, was nonessential, an exercise in frivolity, as games are intended to be on the amateur level. Who knows, absent the opportunity, what might have been in its stead? That is the point. There would have been something in its place, perhaps even something more constructive than a game. Who knows? Who cares?
That sense of indifference manifests itself at times amid the Title IX drumbeat. These people are talking about games, right? They are talking about a glorified right to sweat, a bodily function that most humans are able to complete in understated fashion.
These myopic souls might as well discuss the need to have intercollegiate teams adept in board games, notably Stratego. I happen to be an old devotee of Stratego.
Do you think there would be value in the University of Maryland fielding men's and women's teams in Stratego? I might get into it. I can't speak for you. I can't say a Stratego game would have any real value, except to the participants receiving scholarships based on their playing ability.
I also like to do crossword puzzles. I don't know if things would have turned out differently if I had been granted the opportunity to compete on a crossworld puzzle team in college. But I did not have that opportunity. No, sir. Boo-hoo. Does this mean I finally can earn an appearance on the Ricki Lake show, which is a lifelong dream? I promise to sniffle on cue.
Predictably enough, the socialistic elements of Title IX have resulted in an absence of follow through, particularly in women's basketball.
Remove the profit motive from an endeavor and watch the incompetence soar. Isn't that one of the lessons of the old Soviet Union? Isn't that why so many Canadians cross the border to receive medical care in America?
In a way, with a few notable exceptions, it is no different in women's basketball.
All too many universities field a women's basketball team just to meet the numbers. Athletic officials don't necessarily monitor the quality of their women's basketball programs. Why should they if the public mostly ignores the sport? Why should an athletic department invest in a coaching staff, a recruiting budget and facilities if the only persons who show up to a game are the family members of the players, the homeless and the lost?
In practice, what you wind up with among the more than 300 Division I women's basketball programs is a staggering majority that merely exist.
It is just bad: bad coaches, bad players, bad games. The bad is tolerated as long as 12 to 14 women are on basketball scholarships each year.
There is little accountability and little quality control. You have to see it to believe it. On second thought, do you drink? I would not encourage anyone to attend most women's basketball games unless the person knew nothing about the sport or agreed to be sufficiently intoxicated or was obligated to perform an act of penance.
I don't say this as someone who intrinsically dislikes women's basketball. I say this as someone who has followed the game closely the last 10 years, who has coached, trained and broken down game film with women, plus commiserated with them as well.
They know Title IX is flawed in many respects. They don't say it publicly. They are not dumb. They are torn. They are thankful for the free ride, yet all too aware of their game's incidentalness.
They live with the axiom that you pay for what you get, starting with the coaching staff. If a school is offering bargain-basement salaries to prospective coaches, the school should not be surprised if it ends up with the village idiots.
You have so many of them in women's basketball, so many village idiots who probably would be sweeping floors for a living if it were not for Title IX. That's just one problem. Another is the dearth of quality players. There are just not enough quality athletes to fill the rosters of 300-plus programs, which is why a 100-50 victory is a typical game for UConn in the Big East. This is old-fashioned competition? This is good? No, this is a waste of time.
Title IX's supporters don't cite these inconvenient truths. They just stick to the company line, which is: Isn't it wonderful that little girls in pigtails can dream to be basketball players in college, just as little boys do?
Can someone explain to me why the masses are being conditioned to think this is wonderful? It goes right over my head, and nothing against basketball. I still like to pretend I can play basketball. However, I would not draft a measure that extols the virtues of pickup basketball or compels institutions to grovel at the altar of political correctness.
So you go ahead and tear your anterior cruciate ligament, honey. You go ahead and heed the instructions of the moronic dinosaur on the bench whose only contribution to society will be retirement, followed by death. Many of these dinosaurs should be fired. A few should be flogged. Right now, there should be about 250 openings for head coaches in Division I women's basketball.
If Title IX were dropped tomorrow, I have a suspicion that Division I women's basketball would lose a considerable number of its members. And that would be a good thing, a start, because then the schools invested in Division I women's basketball would be there for the right reasons and not because of a law. You would have better coaches, a higher level of play and more entertaining games. Who knows? You also might increase fan support.
Sorry. You are not supposed to look at Title IX with a critical eye. You have your lines from the script, straight from the Stepford Wives-like types. Hear them roar.
Title IX is all good. It is beautiful. Check out the ever-increasing participation numbers. Look how many girls are playing in high school now, aspiring to land a college scholarship. Oh, my. It is enough to make the national media's heart flutter, even if you couldn't drag most members of the national media to a women's basketball game.
They know what to say and leave it at that.
Next up: racial profiling and why it is wrong to target the Middle Eastern-looking man who has a fuse sticking out of his shoe.
Him: Just do it.
America: Why do they hate us so?
The national discussion involving Title IX is not so different from that vacant thinking.


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