Women who’ve never rowed a boat can get crew scholarships to universities with football programs, thanks to Title IX, which requires an equal number of scholarships to male and female athletes.
Ohio State elevated its women’s rowing program to varsity status nine years ago. Now, as the men’s club team runs programs such as Rent-a-Rower ($50 for four hours of chores like raking leaves, cleaning garages or moving furniture to raise money for equipment and travel), the women are fully funded.
The team has an N.C.A.A. maximum 20 scholarships, and 16 women receive full rides. The remaining money is divvied up among other rowers. The team’s annual budget is nearly $900,000.
”In the fall, rowing is a sport that you carry 70 to 80 people, then in the spring at least 46 kids get out and race,” Ohio State’s athletic director, Andy Geiger, said. ”It’s an expensive sport, but it’s worth it. It really does help offset football.”
I don’t see the justice in denying athletic opportunities to male athletes while begging and bribing women to try sports in which they’ve never had any interest.