ROANOKE, Virginia, April 7. EQUITY in Athletics, Inc. (EIA) announced yesterday that it will amend its complaint against the federal Department of Education to include James Madison University (JMU) and its administrators as defendants, according to Phillip Whitten, a member of the EIA Board of Directors and Executive Director of the College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA).
EIA also plans to ask Judge Glen E. Conrad of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia to enjoin JMU from going through with cutting seven men's teams, including swimming, and three women's teams.
By a letter dated March 23 2007, EIA offered JMU the opportunity to avoid litigation while EIA's suit against the federal government determined the lawful Title IX standard for Virginia and the Fourth Circuit. Because JMU's response dated April 2, 2007, did not provide a clear answer to EIA's letter, EIA asked for a clarification on April 3, 2007. JMU's response clearly rejects any solution short of litigation.
"As a group with two hundred members from the JMU family, we regret that JMU has left us no choice but litigation," said EIA president John Licata. "Before EIA amends its complaint to include JMU, our team needs to work with affected students, alumni and coaches to prepare affidavits and other materials needed to enjoin the cuts." he added.