Opinion | Sexuality

Female and Athletic: College Basketball's Gender Dilemma

Gay bloggers' backlash to Christian coach's pro-family statement highlights the NCAA's messy relationship with femininity.

What seemed like a simple statement about family togetherness has become a lightning rod in the world of Division I women's college basketball.

Robin Pingeton, the new women's basketball coach at the University of Missouri, said in her first press conference April 8, "I'm very blessed to have my staff here. This is something very unique, I think, for Division I women's basketball to have a staff that the entire staff is married with kids. Family is important to us, and we live it every day."

Pingeton, 41, who calls herself "a Christian who happens to be a coach," has taken heat from gay rights bloggers who watch college athletics, reported Inside Higher Ed this week. Helen Carroll of the National Center for Lesbian Rights said Pingeton's comments were meant to "subtly prov[e] that everyone in their program was straight," and that mentioning her faith "was yet again, a subtle way of saying being lesbian or being gay would be against religious values and isn't what our program is about."

Pat ...

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