SEC celebrates 50 years of Title IX

6 hours ago
SEC staff

Photo: SEC staff

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (June 23, 2022) – On June 23, 1972, Title IX of the Higher Education Act was passed as a statute of the United States. It was enacted to ensure: “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be discriminated against under any program or activity. education that receives Federal financial aid.”

Title IX has had an impact on American society in a variety of ways, including ensuring female athletes have an equal opportunity to compete and succeed in sports. The Southeast Conference has been a leader in providing sports opportunities for women and has enjoyed five decades of success.

SEC student-athletes make a difference every day in competition, in the classroom, and in the community. This year, celebrating Title IX’s 50th anniversary, we celebrate their successes and look to the opportunities ahead in the SEC women’s athletics.


Basketball, volleyball and tennis were the first sports to be recognized as a congress championship in the 1979-80 sports year. The Kentucky Wildcats won their first championship in any SEC women’s sport by winning the volleyball championship with a 35-18 record and a 3-1 win over Tennessee in the tournament final.

The SEC held the first women’s basketball tournament in 1980 in Knoxville. Florida won the first game played, beating Mississippi State 68-62. Four days later, Pat Head’s Tennessee Volunteers team defeated Ole Miss, 85-71, in the title match.

Later that year, Florida became the first team to win a tennis championship at the SEC.

The following year, the SEC added championships for women’s golf, gymnastics, swimming and diving, as well as outdoor athletics. Florida won its first women’s golf and swimming & diving titles and Tennessee won its first outdoor track championship.

Meanwhile, LSU claimed the first SEC gymnastics title under head coach DD Breaux — who would eventually become the longest-serving coach in SEC history — male or female — surpassing them. via Adolph Rupp.

In 1982, Florida became the first SEC school to win an NCAA title in any sport when the Gators announced national championships in swimming & diving. Also in 1982, Tennessee Lady Vols became the first SEC team to reach the Four Women’s Finals and Florida swimmer Tracy Caulkins became the first female SEC athlete to be selected as the Women’s Athlete of the Year. year, the award is now known as the Honda- Broderick Cup.

In 1983, Tennessee won the first SEC cross country championship held in Lexington, Ky.

Later in the 1980s, many SEC teams would win national titles in their sport for the first time at the convention. Florida won the NCAA golf championship in 1985, and in 1987, Georgia won the gymnastics championship, LSU won both indoor and outdoor titles, and Tennessee won the first women’s basketball national championship. first.

In 1988, Auburn and Tennessee reached the Quarterfinals of the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament, marking the first time a conference had two teams make it to the finals. Also in 1988, the Kentucky Wildcats took home the SEC’s first national title in the nation.

In 1992, Florida won the NCAA Division I women’s tennis championship, the first of ten national titles in women’s tennis at the convention.

In 1993, the Southeast Conference schools jointly adopted the Gender Equality Principles, acknowledging that each school would offer at least two more intercollegiate programs for girls than for boys.

Football became an SEC-sponsored sport in 1993 with four teams playing (Arkansas, Auburn, Kentucky and Vanderbilt) and Vanderbilt beat Arkansas in two extra time to claim the first SEC crown in football. . All 12 members started playing in 1996.

In 1997, South Carolina beat Florida to win the first SEC softball championship.

In 1998, Florida won the SEC’s first and only national title in football by winning the NCAA Division I Women’s Collegiate Cup over North Carolina.

In 2012, the SEC announced that the SEC would determine the equestrian tournament champion starting with the 2012-13 season. It became the 21st sport sponsored by the federation. South Carolina won its first collegiate title in equestrianism, and Auburn claimed the SEC’s first national title in the sport in the same season. Also in 2012, Alabama won the SEC’s first national title in softball.

Arkansas won the first NCAA Women’s National title in 2019 and the only national title for the SEC team in the sports year as college sports were subsequently canceled due to the global Covid-19 pandemic. . With the win, Arkansas became the second NCAA women’s team to reach the three-season title.

In 2021, Kentucky becomes the first SEC program to win a national title in volleyball, giving the SEC at least one national championship in every sport it sponsors.

The SEC announced in July 2021 that the University of Oklahoma and the University of Texas would become members effective July 1, 2025, with competition beginning in all sports for the 2025 school year. -26.

Sport Inauguration season First SEC Champion The first NCAA Champon
Volleyball 1979-80 Kentucky, 1979 Kentucky, 2020-21
Basketball 1979-80 Tennessee, 1980 Tennessee, 1987
Tennis 1979-80 Florida, 1980 Florida, 1992
Dive 1980-81 Florida, 1981 Florida, 1982
Exercise 1980-81 LSU, 1981 Georgia, 1987
Golf 1980-81 Florida, 1981 Florida, 1985
Runway & Outdoor Court 1980-81 Tennessee, 1981 LSU, 1987
Transnational 1983-84 Tennessee, 1983 Kentucky, 1988
Street & Indoor School 1983-84 Tennesee, 1984 LSU, 1987
Football 1993-94 Vanderbilt, 1993 Florida, 1998
Softball 1996-97 South Carolina, 1997 Alabama, 2012
Horse rider 2012-13 South Carolina, 1997 Auburn, 2013

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