Single-event videos from winter MHSAA Championships in Individual Wrestling and Lower Peninsula Boys Swimming & Diving will become available soon on the MHSAA.tv website and for Comcast subscribers through Xfinity On Demand.
All of the individual events from the Lower Peninsula Boys Swimming & Diving Finals, and the title match in each weight class from the Individual Wrestling Finals in March will be available on both platforms, allowing viewers to focus on their favorite team or individual. Among the highlights of those videos are:
- Adam Coon of Fowlerville of St. Johns won his fourth MHSAA Individual Wrestling title; and Ben Whitford of St. Johns captured a fourth straight state association championship with his second Michigan crown after winning Illinois honors as a freshman and sophomore.
- Hartland teammates Austin Eicher and Jacob Gorial squaring off in the 130-pound Division 1 championship match at the Individual Wrestling Finals.
- Brothers Kanen at 103 pounds and Zehlin Storr at 135 pounds of Leslie finishing their respective seasons undefeated with titles at the Division 3 Individual Wrestling Finals.
- Josh Ehrman of Saline setting all-division records at the Lower Peninsula Boys Swimming & Diving Finals in the 200-Yard Individual Medley and the 100-Yard Breaststroke; and swimming a leg of a record-setting 200-Yard Medley Relay.
- A record-breaking photo finish victory for Holland over Ann Arbor Pioneer in the 200-Yard Medley Relay at the Division 2 Lower Peninsula Boys Swimming & Diving Finals.
In addition to the latest VOD selections, Xfinity on Demand viewers can catch MHSAA action in Girls and Boys Basketball, Girls Competitive Cheer, Lower Peninsula Boys Swimming and Ice Hockey. Here’s the complete list of events available in April on Xfinity on Demand:
Available Through April 18
Girls Competitive Cheer Finals – Full-length coverage of all four divisions
Available Through April 21
Ice Hockey Finals – Highlights of championship games in all three divisions
Girls Basketball Semifinals – Highlights of all eight semifinal contests
Available Through April 25
Division 3 Lower Peninsula Boys Swimming Finals – All events
Available Through April 28
Division 2 Lower Peninsula Boys Swimming Finals – All events
Available Through April 30
Boys Basketball Semifinals – Highlights of all eight semifinal contests
Division 1 Lower Peninsula Boys Swimming Finals – All events
Available through May 8
Division 3 & 4 Individual Wrestling Finals – Championship match in each weight class
Available April 12 through May 13
Division 1 & 2 Individual Wrestling Finals – Championship match in each weight class
To say that American female athletes dominated the recent Olympics in Tokyo would be an understatement.
Among the 66 medals earned by American female Olympians – most by any country in the history of the Games – were gold-medal performances by the U.S. basketball, volleyball, water polo and beach volleyball teams. Eighteen medals were earned by the U.S. women swimmers, female track and field athletes claimed 15 medals, and the U.S. women’s softball and soccer teams won silver and bronze medals, respectively.
In the past 30 years of the Olympic Games, the United States has dominated the women’s team sports of basketball (nine golds), soccer (four golds, one silver, one bronze) and softball (three golds, two silvers) — not to mention the untold number of medals in track and field. And this past summer, the U.S. women’s volleyball team claimed its first gold medal.
These performances by some of our nation’s most skilled female athletes never would have been possible without the passage of Title IX and the offerings of these sports through our nation’s schools. With the chance to play afforded by the landmark Title IX legislation in 1972, girls participation in several high school sports skyrocketed in the years that followed.
When the NFHS conducted its first participation survey in 1971, basketball and outdoor track and field were the primary girls sports, comprising about two-thirds of the 294,000 total. However, with the opportunity to play additional sports, girls flocked to volleyball and softball first, along with cross country and eventually soccer.
Soccer, in fact, has had the most remarkable growth. In 1971, only 700 girls were playing high school soccer. Twenty-five years later, that number had climbed to almost 210,000; and as the 50th anniversary of Title IX approaches, there are now almost 400,000 girls playing high school soccer – a staggering 56,200 percentage increase in 50 years. Soccer now ranks fourth in popularity among girls high school sports – all because of that opportunity in 1972.
There are many other success stories, however. The pre-Title IX survey in 1971 indicated that 1,719 girls were participating in cross country. With increases every year until 2015, today, there are 219,345 girls competing in high school programs and the sport ranks sixth in popularity.
Although participation numbers have leveled a bit the past 10 years, fast-pitch softball is another sport that flourished after the passage of Title IX. With fewer than 10,000 participants in 1971, the numbers quickly rose to 220,000 by 1985 and 343,000 by 2000, and softball is currently fifth among girls sports with 362,038 participants.
Since track and field and basketball were the primary sports in the early days of girls sports programs, increases in those sports have not been as dramatic; however, they remain the first and third most-popular sports, respectively, today. Volleyball, however, much like soccer, continues its upward climb.
Without a doubt, volleyball has seen the steadiest increases among girls high school sports the past 50 years. After starting with 17,952 participants in 1971, the numbers jumped to 300,810 by 1990 and 409,332 by 2010 and 452,808 by 2018. During its climb, volleyball surpassed basketball as the No. 2 girls sport.
And among the top six girls sports from 2010 to 2018 (numbers are not available the past two years due to the pandemic), volleyball has gained the most participants (43,476), followed by soccer (32,549). And all of this has occurred thanks to legislation passed in 1972 that was not fundamentally meant to address opportunities for girls to participate in high school sports.
The NFHS is leading a yearlong celebration of the 50th anniversary of Title IX, which officially occurs on June 23, 2022. “Title IX at 50 – Celebrating and Growing Opportunities” is highlighting the law’s impact by celebrating the inspirational individuals and landmark moments in the history of Title IX, and continuing to grow the educational and competitive opportunities for the future.
More information, including a Title IX Timeline, Title IX Milestones, The History and Importance of Title IX, Title IX Fact Sheet, Title IX Frequently Asked Questions and several Title IX videos, can be accessed on the NFHS Website.
Dr. Karissa L. Niehoff is beginning her fourth year as executive director of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) in Indianapolis. She is the first female to head the national leadership organization for high school athletics and performing arts activities and the sixth full-time executive director of the NFHS. She previously was executive director of the Connecticut Association of Schools-Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference for seven years.