A while ago, we mentioned University of Montana’s plans to add women’s softball. By way of update, here it’s reported that the Regents have approved a plan to raise the student athletic fee (by $12.50 per year) thereby confirming the funding source for Montana’s softball initiative. Student government also approved the fee increase, though leaders expressed reservation that the money be earmarked for Title IX compliance.
Adding softball was the right thing to do. Women make up 51.7% of the undergraduate population at Montana, but receive only 42.7% of the athletic opportunities, in a total of 6 sports. By my calculation, Montana would have to add 76 athletic opportunities for women to achieve proportionality. Softball is a start. It certainly improving their chances of demonstrating compliance with prong 3 in the meanwhile, as the decision satisfies to demonstrated unmet interested and ability.