A study of diversity found that the schools of the Football Bowl division still underrepresented women and people of color when recruiting for senior positions in the sports departments of the highest level of competition.
The report, released Wednesday by the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport (TIDES), shows an improvement over last year with an overall D-plus score over D-Plus in 2021. Racial hiring has also raised its score to B- minus from C last heard.
However, gender recruitment remained F, and the study found that women make up only 10 percent of sports principals in 130 FBS schools.
“You see, over a 25-year period, we’ve always been without much movement, particularly in these positions,” said Richard Lapczyk, head of the institute and lead author of the report.
The study looked at the positions of presidents or chancellors of universities, directors of athletics, representatives of athletes in athletics and conference commissioners using data provided by the NCAA.
There have been improvements in other areas, the report said, and the number of non-white sports directors has risen to 18.5%, “thus slightly reducing the dominance of white people in these positions,” Lapchyk said.
Lapchik said changes towards more diverse staff are starting from the top, which is another issue of concern. The report found that there were only 22 people with different colors for the presidency or chancellor of the school, which is one less than a year earlier.
In total, white people held 324 of the 395 management positions on campus reported in this study, which was the same as last year.
The TIDES table also tracked the racial composition of FBS head coaches and athletes. It was found that less than one in five head coaches was not white, and black, Hispanic or Hispanic athletes made up more than 51% of all FBS players.
“There are many opportunities for growth as head coaches to be as racial as the number of DI FBS student-athletes,” the report said.
The NCAA has tried to address diversity diversity issues by making a September 2016 commitment to be more inclusive in its quest for leadership, similar to the NFL’s “Rooney Rule” on diversity of candidates. The report notes that 878 schools and 102 conferences at all NCAA levels have signed the pledge.
But Lapchyk said there are no sanctions or prices for institutions that do not follow the recommendations.
“After five years, the results have not changed enough,” said Lapchyk.
However, after 25 years of tracking the diversity of hiring in several professional and college organizations, Lapczyk still hopes that positive changes are ahead.
Lapchyk believes that the activity of athletes, which has been observed in the last few years after several high-profile incidents such as the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis in 2020, is alive and may lead to change.
Athletes and their coaches who marched for change continue to demand accountability, Lapchyk said, and believes their influence will grow if college administrators are tasked with selecting coaches and athletic directors.
He also sees that decision makers listen more to athletes than in the past. In addition, Lapchik is confident that improving the diversity of hiring in professional leagues such as the NBA and NFL will occur in the NCAA.
“The frustration I have felt over the years has been alleviated by my conviction that all decision-makers in the league’s offices have this as a priority,” Lapchyk said, “and will do something about it.”