Athletic Director Tom Osborne announced that University of Nebraska-Lincoln had no immediate plans to pay athletes the $2000 cost-of-living student stipend approved by NCAA Division I this fall. Osborne explained that there was no clear way to implement the stipends, which are only authorized for athletes on full scholarship, without violating Title IX, given that there are about half as many full-scholarship female athletes as there are full-scholarship male athletes. We recently posted about the Faculty Athletics Representatives raising a similar concern in a letter to the NCAA.
The NCAA has not provided guidance to member institutions about how to implement the stipends without violating Title IX. Perhaps if more ADs follow Osborne’s lead, the NCAA will feel more motivated to address the gender equity implications of this plan.