Less than 35 years ago, women were struggling for the chance to play; now they have the opportunity to battle for the chance to win. The University of Oregon’s unique combination of influential leaders, the development of women’s athletics prior to Title IX, the transition through the major changes instructed by directives, and post-legislation reaction continue to shape the character of sports at Oregon
Challenged by Change
Evolution of Women’s Sports at Oregon
Women’s athletics at the University of Oregon continually evolve to meet the needs and interests of the student population. Unknown to many, women’s athletics have been alive on campus for nearly a century.
The progress made in women’s athletics during the past century is undeniably linked to four primary leaders: Janet Woodruff, Lois Youngen, Becky Sisley and Tom Heinonen. All athletes themselves, this group of advocates courageously forged through the obstacles, fighting for expanded opportunities for women throughout their tenures.
Adapting to Title IX
The University of Oregon’s response to and compliance with Title IX legislation has significantly shaped both the women’s and men’s athletic programs beginning in 1972 and continuing on today.