Messenger - Vol. 3, No. 4, Page 6
Summer 1994
Twenty-five years of women's athletics: 1969-1994


     Two-year pilot program established in 1969 for three sports:
     field hockey, basketball and swimming. Budgets were $500;
     athletes traveled by station wagon; and students provided most

     In 1971, the Athletic Governing Board made women's athletics a
     permanent program at UD.  Women's Intercollegiate Athletic
     Council formed.

     Title IX, federal law prohibiting discrimination on the basis of
     sex in any federally funded institution, passed in 1972, with
     post-secondary school implementation in 1978.

     In 1972, two more sports added: tennis and volleyball.

     UD joined Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for Women
     (AIAW) in 1972.

     Women's athletics moved from Hartshorn Gymnasium  to Carpenter
     Sports Building.


     Integration of UD men's and women's athletic programs, and
     Women's Intercollegiate Athletic Council dissolved.

     Most women's programs moved to improved Delaware Field House.
     Swimming and volleyball stay in Carpenter Sports Building. Budget
     increases for travel, insurance, championship events, banquet

     Softball added in 1975 and lacrosse in 1977.

     Financial aid initiated for field hockey and basketball in 1976.
     Alumni Association awards for outstanding athlete in each sport
     and outstanding senior athlete established. Letter-winner awards
     for women and men student-athletes standardized.

     AIAW divisional play initiated, with UD becoming Division II in
     all sports except Division I field hockey.


     Addition of three sports: Indoor  and outdoor track and field in
     1979 and cross country in 1981.

     Several part-time assistant coaches added and athletically
     related financial aid increased.

     National success for several teams under Association of
     Intercollegiate Athletics for Women: field hockey, four top-four
     finishes; lacrosse, two national championships; swimming,
     national champion relay team; track and field, individual
     qualifiers for national championships; volleyball, qualified for
     two national tournaments.

     National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) takes over
     women's athletics in 1982. All sports programs declared Division

     Lacrosse wins NCAA Division I National Championship in its 1983
     inaugural season. Ultimately, the lacrosse team takes three
     consecutive national championships.

     Field hockey takes third in NCAA championship in 1982; lacrosse
     takes third in NCAA championship in 1984; and cross country,
     swimming and track and field all have qualifiers for national

     UD wins Conference Commissioners Cup for "overall excellence in
     women's athletic competition" in 1982-83 and 1983-84.

     Women's athletics incorporated into East Coast Conference.


     National qualifiers in cross country and track and field. Field
     hockey and lacrosse qualify for national rankings.

     UD won East Coast Conference Commissioners Cup in 1985-86, 1987-
     88 and 1988-89.

     Permanent softball scoreboard, resurfacing indoor and outdoor
     track, new game and practice fields for field hockey and
     lacrosse. Academic support for athletes added in 1987.


     East Coast Conference Commissioners Cup won in 1989-90, 1990-91.

     UD joins North Atlantic Conference 1991-92. All women's programs
     included except lacrosse, which is affiliated with Colonial
     Athletic Association.

     NAC awards annual Commissioners Cup to most successful combined
     men's and women's athletic program, which UD wins in 1991 and

     Soccer added as 11th sport in 1990.

     Scholarship aid offered to athletes in lacrosse, soccer, softball
     and volleyball. Equipment improvements continue and budgetary
     increases include recruitment funding.

     With Bob Carpenter Sports/Convocation Center comes new practice
     and game facility for basketball, improved access to training
     room, weight room, equipment room and locker rooms. Move to
     separate head coaches for all sports except cross country, track
     and field and swimming.

     UD team invited to National Invitational Volleyball Championship
     in 1992. Field hockey and lacrosse have sporadic national

     Gala dinner with guest speaker Billie Jean King held in Spring
     1994 to celebrate 25 years of women's athletics.