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Knight Commission urging NCAA to correct racial, gender inequities

The Knight Commission yesterday “urged the NCAA to act immediately” on two proposals to "correct racial and gender inequities in NCAA athletics revenue distribution," according to Heather Dinich of ESPN.com. The group was "staunch in its belief" that the association “doesn't need to wait for a new NCAA president to do it.” The commission, which initially proposed equal revenue distribution in Sep. ‘21, “doubled down” on its call for the implementation of a gender equity principle that would "require any NCAA athletics performance-based revenue distribution to provide equal rewards for the performance of women's and men's teams." The Knight Commission also is recommending that, to qualify for academic-based awards, institutions "must first demonstrate that the gap between their Black and white athletes' graduation success rates is not more than 25 percentage points.” If this new racial equity criterion had been implemented in ‘19, 66% of D-I schools "would have qualified for the academic award" instead of 79% of D-I schools. The Knight Commission is “pushing for change at a time when the NCAA itself is in the midst of monumental change," including a "complete restructuring of its governance and searching for a replacement for outgoing president Mark Emmert" (ESPN.com, 5/17).

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