The American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut has filed a suit against Quinnipiac University over its decision to eliminate the women's volleyball program. The ACLU is representing several team members and their head coach.
ACLU Executive Director, Andrew Schneider says the school has a history of violating Title IX by failing to provide female students the same opportunity as their male peers to participate in collegiate sports.
"And so for instance, the school has 62 percent of female students in the student body yet according to Quinnipiac's numbers and their filings with the government, they have only provided 50 percent of them athletic opportunities at the school."
In contrast, Scheider says male students at Quinnipiac make up 38 percent of the student body but have a 50 percent participation rate in college sports.
Title IX is a federal law enacted in 1972 that protects women against gender discrimination in education including sports.
Quinnipiac senior and volleyball player, Erin Overdevest says the news came as a surprise to the team especially since two incoming freshman decided to enroll at Quinnipiac so they could play collegiate volleyball.
"Promising them four seasons at least, who would have thought that why would they do that if they were looking to cut the program?"
The ACLU says the university told the students it would honor any scholarships the athletes had until next year.
The lawsuit seeks a temporary injunction to stop the university from cutting the program and requires the school to fully comply with Title IX.
Quinnipiac University would not comment on the lawsuit and would not provide the reason behind eliminating women's volleyball.