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Wilson College Adding Men’s Teams to Stay in NCAA

For its first 144 years, Wilson College was an all women’s school. Starting with the 2013–14 school year, the school will become a coeducational institution, admitting men as residential students for the first time. But that means a unique challenge for the Division III school and something almost unheard of in the Title IX era: the need to add men’s sports team:

Men’s athletics will be offered at Wilson, with cross country and basketball programs already announced. At least three more will be required in the next three years for Wilson to keep its NCAA eligibility.

All three NCAA divisions have an exception for single-gender institutions. Here is Division III’s for example. But as Wilson adds men, it will need to comply with the NCAA’s sport sponsorship requirements for coeducational institutions. Those requirements in Division III are based on enrollment. Wilson College’s enrollment is under 1,000, so it is required to sponsor five men’s and five women’s sports. If more males are added over the next few years that push enrollment over 1,000, Wilson College will have to add a sixth team for each gender.

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