Today, we celebrate the addition of women’s lacrosse and women’s gymnastics to the Clemson Athletics family and I hope that you will join us in welcoming two outstanding women’s sport opportunities to our Department.
Since our decision and announcement in April to fully reinstate men’s track and field and add women’s sports, we have been analyzing several potential combinations. We have heard from leaders and advocates from many of them. Their passion for their respective sports is evident, and I sincerely appreciate these individuals for providing additional, detailed information on each of the proposed sports to aid in our decision-making process.
Ultimately, the combination of women’s lacrosse and gymnastics gives us the ability to compete for ACC and NCAA Division I championships, as well as to address our ongoing gender equity considerations.
A little more than eight months ago, we reviewed our participation and gender equity numbers and faced a decision to either add 50 or more female participation opportunities or to reduce the number of male participation opportunities by the same number. Clemson Athletics’ gender participation ratio is required to mirror that of campus to ensure gender equity compliance. The addition of women’s sports programs was not practical last fall due to the financial realities at the time.
However, as the Department and University’s financial circumstances have improved and the University has made a commitment to help Athletics support new sports. Over the past ten years, we’ve successfully added women’s golf and softball as a way to maintain balance with campus demographics, and have enjoyed many great moments with those programs.
We are now reviewing concepts to build the necessary practice facilities for each of the programs, and hope to be able to announce plans in the coming months. Additionally, we’re looking forward to watching these programs call Historic Riggs Field and Littlejohn Coliseum home for competitions.
This is an exciting time for our department, and we hope to move forward with adding head coaches in the very near future so they may begin building championship-level programs.
We’re thankful for all of your support as our athletics’ program evolves, and we know that our loyal fans will embrace these new sport communities.
Thank you for your continued support of Clemson Athletics and IPTAY.
Dan RadakovichDirector of Athletics
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