Crashing the Old Boys' Network: The Tragedies and Triumphs of Girls and Women in Sports

Crashing the Old Boys' Network: The Tragedies and Triumphs of Girls and Women in Sports

Crashing the Old Boys' Network: The Tragedies and Triumphs of Girls and Women in Sports

Crashing the Old Boys' Network: The Tragedies and Triumphs of Girls and Women in Sports

Synopsis

Crashing the Old Boys' Network is the first book to examine the intense, and sometimes hostile, debate about Title IX and its application to girls and women in all areas of athletics. The facts and figures are highlighted by spirited commentary from Billie Jean King, Donna Lopiano, Pat Summitt, Chris Berman, and many others. By using the commentary of well-known personalities and experts in a variety of relevant disciplines, this book uncovers the roots of this controversy at all levels of athletics. While many believe Title IX and gender equity apply only to intercollegiate athletics, their reach touches girls in high school athletics as well. While not protected by Federal law, girls in youth sports, women in professional sports, and women in the sports media also suffer the negative effects of gender discrimination. While detailing many personal accounts and documenting a host of legal battles, the greatest value in this book lies in the successful examples it provides. Many opponents proclaimTitle IX to be a grim reaper for football and men's basketball. The author provides examples demonstrating how Title IX and gender equity can be achieved with rational, well-designed plans of action.

Excerpt

When does a person become enlightened? How does the illumination occur? I can't be a hypocrite. It took me many years to feel enlightened, and I know I have not fully arrived at that stage. It is a daily process, and many times, it is a struggle.

Growing up in a middle-class family of Italian/German descent instilled in me many important values. Although some would view those values as old fashioned, I embrace them, but I also recognize that some of those beliefs were unfounded.

Like many young boys growing up in the 1960s and 1970s, everyday pickup games were the Super Bowl, the World Series, or the NBA Championship--even if it was really just for the bragging rights of Kimberly Road. All the guys in the neighborhood got together every day and competed from sunup to sundown in a rotating frenzy of wiffle ball, touch football, and driveway basketball. Girls were not allowed.

Nor did we even consider there might be some who wanted to join our free-for-all. After all, the girl's part was to be the cheerleader, replete with pom-poms, short skirts, letter sweaters, and those funky white shoes with the black dog ear on each side. Girls weren't athletes. They weren't supposed to be. Sweating was very un-ladylike. Even their participation in gym class was nothing more than the fulfillment of an educational requirement. Girls certainly couldn't perform great feats of strength, speed, and agility.

High school athletics did nothing to alter these perceptions. While we . . .

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