Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



First Advisor

Deidre Hill Butler




female athletes, exclusion, misrepresentation, coverage, sports


This thesis looks to elaborate on recent studies done by Michael Messner, Cheryl Cooky, Robin H. Hextrum and other scholars regarding the exclusion and misrepresentation of female athletes and women’s sport in the media since the enactment of Title IX in 1972. This thesis provides an overview of the history of Title IX, a detailed analysis of the ways which female athletes are portrayed in the media and trends that have occurred based on the coverage women’s sports have received since 1972. The research included and data collected for this thesis are based on ESPN’s SportsCenter and the headlines on the NY Times sports website. This thesis uses the method of coding to properly evaluate qualitative and quantitative data collected from both mediums, to allow for further discussion and possible suggestions, regarding the hope for an increase in airtime and a more accurate portrayal of women’s sports in the future of the media.