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Archive for December 19, 2019

Dec. 19, 2019 — A powerful expansion in one sport (thus far)

Today, it was reported that the University of North Carolina at Charlotte would be adding a women’s team sport.

And, by 2022, women’s lacrosse will be a part of the athletic offerings in a school located in a city that is now one of the most important financial centers in the United States. Charlotte is slated to become the seventh NCAA Division I university to offer women’s lacrosse.

I’ve known for years that the school has been aiming to develop a competitive football team in Conference USA. As such, the school needs to add more women’s athletic teams to create Title IX balance.

There is a good argument for the school to begin a field hockey program, as central North Carolina has become a tremendous breeding ground for new scholastic programs. The city had both finalists in the public-school and the private-school state tournaments in 2019. The problem, of course, is that the only other Conference USA team playing field hockey is Old Dominion, which competes in the Big East in that sport.

But the potential benefit of UNC-Charlotte picking up the sport is the fact that several C-USA schools are located near places where field hockey is present, such as Western Kentucky, Texas-San Antonio, and North Texas State. I would think having a Charlotte field hockey program might be the touch paper that ignites college field hockey in the deep South.

Let’s see what happens.