Friday, June 27, 2014

USC announcement inspires complaint

Someone has challenged the University of Southern California's recently announced plan to provide four-year scholarships to football, and men's and women's basketball players. As Erin noted the other day, the disproportionate benefit to male student-athletes is likely a Title IX violation.
And a properly signed complaint (we don't know by whom at this point) to OCR is challenging the new policy and pointing out other Title IX violations at the school including: less pay for head and assistant coaches of women's sports; fewer women's coaches, fewer opportunities for female student-athletes, inequitable funding of women's sports; inequitable funding of recruiting. 
Differences in funding and salaries and positions do not always equal Title IX violations. If athletic departments can justify the differences and prove they are providing a similar quality of experience to men and women, this is enough. 
That being said, in addition to the likely problems with four-year scholarship distribution, the differential between average salaries between coaches of men's and women's teams at both the head and assistant coach level is startling. 
Head coach average salary:  $647,202 (M) $129,552 (W)
Asst coach average salary: $200,871(M)  $45,629 (W)

We don't know whether OCR will visit the LA campus to investigate. It's possible they will ask USC to do its own study and address the disparities and report back. 
I do believe they will have to explicitly address the scholarship issue and it would be nice if we could see some progress on salary equity.