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OSU refutes gender accusations

Officials from Ohio State can’t figure out why the Columbus chapter of the National Organization for Women is targeting the athletic department on the gender equity issue.’This is the first institution in the Big Ten to meet NCAA requirements,’ said OSU President E. Gordon Gee.OSU has reached requirements set by the NCAA meeting conditions of gender equity one year early, and NOW is challenging them to do even more.Instead of focusing on the first Big Ten school to actually meet the NCAA requirements, Gee proposes a different course of action for NOW.’I would suggest that they concentrate on someone who is not meeting the requirements,’ he said.The coordinator of Columbus NOW, Patricia Varieur said that this is a national campaign, which began on Saturday, and is focusing on all sorts of organizations. OSU just happens to fall within her district.A billboard, paid for by NOW, was erected Friday on Kinnear Road stating that the athletic department at OSU discriminates against women.OSU has been working very hard for gender equity in athletics, said Barbara Snyder, a professor of law who is right in the middle of the gender equity issue at OSU. She is currently teaching a seminar on Title IX, and served as the chair for the equity subcommittee of the NCAA committee that developed the guidelines. ‘I feel proud of the things we have done and am pushing for more to happen,’ Snyder said. Varieur said she ‘applauds these efforts,’ but wants to see even more from OSU. Archie Griffin, associate athletics director, said that won’t be a problem because the athletic department isn’t finished working on gender equity.’We’ve made great strides in this field and will continue to make more,’ he said.One major concern of NOW is the number of women in head coaching and assistant coaching positions.Because of the lack of women’s professional sports, coaching is their only option after college, Varieur said.OSU reported 68 percent of head coaches are men, and 80 percent of assistant coaches are men.’Ohio State is not even filling their own pipeline for coaching positions,’ Varieur said.

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