Tag Archives: NCAA

Lia Thomas competitor Riley Gaines reveals she felt ‘extreme discomfort’ sharing locker room

Having a locker room with the transgender athlete she competed against caused “extreme discomfort,” according to a former collegiate swimmer, Riley Gaines Barker who has been open in her criticism of Lia Thomas.

Riley Gaines, a competitive swimmer for the University of Kentucky, complained to Fox News’ Tucker Carlson that it bothered her to change in a locker room with someone who had “different parts” and that Thomas’ usage of the women’s restrooms had not been made clear by the organizers at that time.

Riley Gaines, who swam competitively for the University of Kentucky, told Fox News' Tucker Carlson that she was uncomfortable changing in the same locker room as Lia Thomas.

“That’s not something we were forewarned about, which I don’t think is right in any means, changing in a locker room with someone who has different parts,” Gaines said in an interview with the conservative talk show host.

The college athlete who graduated this year has repeatedly knocked Thomas for her participation in women’s swimming — saying Thomas, who was born male, has an unfair biological advantage.

“So not only were we forced to race against a male, we were forced to change in the locker room with one,” Gaines said on Wednesday’s episode of “Tucker Carlson Today.”

Penn Quakers swimmer Lia Thomas holds a trophy after finishing fifth in the 200 free at the NCAA Swimming & Diving Championships as Kentucky Wildcats swimmer Riley Gaines looks on.

“Then we’re sitting there not even knowing who to talk to, who to complain to because this kind of all happened behind the scenes and very discreetly.”

Gaines claimed that the National Collegiate Athletic Association had not done enough to preserve the integrity of women’s sports.

Gaines and Thomas tied for fifth place in the 200-meter freestyle NCAA finals in March, and even then, Gaines has been vocal in her criticism of Thomas.

Kentucky swimmer Riley Gaines swims the 200 Butterfly prelims at the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships on March 19th, 2022.

Gaines criticized the University of Pennsylvania for putting Thomas forward for the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s “Woman of the Year” award in 2022 earlier this month.

“This is yet another slap in the face to women,” Gaines, who was also nominated for the award, tweeted. “First a female national title and now nominated for the pinnacle award in collegiate athletics. The @NCAA has made this award worthless.” 

In April, Gaines first spoke with Carlson on Thomas’ participation in women’s swimming.

Gaines stated at the time that she believed it was unjust to be compelled to compete against Thomas and that the majority of female athletes she knew felt the same way.

“We’re dealing with something that’s completely out of our control when we’re racing, biological males,” she said in the April interview. “Whether they have different lung capacities, their height, testosterone levels whether they’ve used testosterone blockers or not — it doesn’t suppress going through puberty as a male. Especially Lia, who swam for three years as a male.”

“It’s completely unfair and it’s a matter of equity, really,” Gaines added.

The world swimming governing organization, FINA, effectively banned transgender women from competing in elite women’s competitions last month as a result of the issue surrounding transgender women in sports.

Source: dailymail.co.uk

Mother of Ivy League swimmer who raced against trans athlete Lia Thomas slams her ‘Woman of the Year’ award nomination

The mother of an Ivy League swimmer who lost to transgender UPenn athlete Lia Thomas in a competition is criticizing the school for making the nomination, calling it “humiliating and devastating.”

On “Fox & Friends First” on Monday, Kim Jones expressed her disgust at the nomination. She claimed that the institution was implying that “women don’t matter.”

Kim Jones, mother of an Ivy League swimmer who competed against UPenn transgender athlete Lia Thomas, appeared on 'Fox & Friends First' and slammed the university for nominating Thomas for the NCAA 'Woman of the Year' award

‘[The message is] they’re not even worthy of dignity and comfort in their locker rooms,’ Jones said. ‘And this nomination is just the embodiment of that message. It’s really frustrating to understand where the current NCAA and Ivy League and especially Penn’s stance is on the value of women in modern society.’

Thomas, 22, was one of two students nominated for the Woman of the Year Award from the National College Athletics Association.

Jones, a former All-American tennis player whose daughter played Thomas, is the most recent person to come forward and express their displeasure.

Thomas, 22, was named by UPenn as one of two students nominated for the National College Athletics' Association's Woman of the Year Award

Others who spoke out in response to Thomas’ nomination for the prestigious prize included tennis icon Martina Navratilova, University of Kentucky swimmer Riley Gaines, and one of the 2022 NCAA Woman of the Year contenders.

The Independent Council on Women’s Sports, which Marshi Smith, a former NCAA swimming champion and co-founder of, co-founded, joined Jones on Fox Monday and said, “NCAA needs to address core truths.”

‘There is a biological difference between men and women,’ she continued. ‘And if we can’t agree that that foundational truth is a reality, then how can we protect our girls and women?’ 

Marshi Smith, a former NCAA champion swimmer, joined Kim Jones on 'Fox & Friends First' and said that the 'NCAA needs to acknowledge fundamental truths'

According to Jones, college athletes prepare for many hours only to have their efforts “dismissed” when biological males are given an unfair physical advantage in competition.

‘That’s what all that effort, all those hours, all that hard work, and the journey that was supposed to be so empowering and fulfilling has been reduced to something that people think is a sideshow. It’s really frustrating,’ she said.

The nomination, according to Kentucky swimmer Riley Gaines, is “another slap in the face to women” and “NCAA has made this award meaningless,” she wrote on Twitter..’ 

‘[T]his is yet another slap in the face to women. First a female national title and now nominated for the pinnacle award in collegiate athletics. The NCAA has made this award worthless,’ Gaines wrote.

Riley Gaines (pictured right), University of Kentucky swimmer and one of 2022's NCAA Woman of the Year nominees, is speaking out after the University of Pennsylvania nominated transgender swimmer Lia Thomas (pictured left) for the prestigious award

Gaines and Thomas famously tied for fifth place in the women’s 200-meter NCAA finals in March, but as there was only one trophy, the event’s administrators informed Gaines that Thomas would receive it while hers would be mailed later.

Gaines wasn’t the only athlete who expressed her fury on Twitter.

Gaines and Thomas famously tied for 5th place in the women's 200-meter NCAA championships in March, but as there was only one trophy, Gaines was told by organizers that the trophy would be given to Thomas, while hers would be mailed at a later time

The woman with the most major titles in women’s tennis during the Open Era, Navratilova, also mocked the candidacy on Twitter.

‘Not enough fabulous biological women athletes, NCAA?!? What is wrong with you?!!!!!!!?’ she tweeted.

Other athletes and commentators also commented.

Former NCAA champion swimmer Marshi Smith tweeted: ‘How many women’s awards are we willing to surrender? The Ivy League choosing a male as their nominee is doubling down on their anti-woman campaign.’

Thomas, who won the 500-yard freestyle final in March 2022, is the first known transgender woman to win an NCAA swimming championship

Physics teacher Debbie Hayton, who is herself, transgender, was critical and said: ‘I urge Thomas to do what is right and respectfully decline the nomination, and possibly generate some respect.’

Commentators away from the world of sports also weighed in, with podcast host Allie Beth Stuckey writing: ‘NCAA dubs ‘Lia’ Thomas ‘woman’ of the year. You have a laugh at the audacity of our current dystopia. Rest assured that the harder they push this stuff, the harder the pendulum will swing back. And it will swing back—sooner than you think.’ 

Thomas’ nomination by UPenn has continued in spite of repeated criticism from other athletes and their families regarding her achievement.

Shame on them for nominating Lia Thomas,’ a conservative college organization Young America’s Foundation wrote on Twitter. ‘UPenn must have forgotten that in order to qualify for the NCAA Woman of the Year award, one must actually be a woman.

The governing organization of swimming, FINA, has since prohibited transgender athletes from competing in elite competitions.

The school is being 'shamed' for nominating her. A conservative college organization Young America's Foundation wrote on Twitter that there is 'nothing brave about competing against people whom you have a biological advantage over'

To compete, athletes had to have undergone a shift before the age of 12.

FINA also suggested that transgender athletes compete in an “open” division.

Source: dailymail.co.uk

Trans swimmer Lia Thomas has been nominated for the NCAA Woman of the Year award

The University of Pennsylvania athlete shot to fame earlier this year when she became the first transgender NCAA champion in Division I history. Thomas has garnered international attention over the past year thanks to her world-record efforts in the 200- and 500-yard freestyle events.

Lia Thomas finishes the 200 yard Freestyle for the University of Pennsylvania at an Ivy League swim meet against Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass., on Jan. 22, 2022.

Thomas not only broke records for the NCAA season but also dominated the Ivy League women’s championships, taking first place in the 100-, 200-, and 500-yard freestyle events. She also made history by becoming the first trans athlete to win an NCAA Division I championship.

The prize winner won’t be revealed until January 2023 (until the NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics has made a decision).

However, Thomas stated during an appearance with Good Morning America that even her nomination would face opposition.

Trans Swimming Champion Lia Thomas Is Nominated For Woman Of The Year

She pre-emptively responded to her critics: “I don’t need anybody’s permission to be myself. You can’t go halfway and be like, ‘I support trans people but only to a certain point.

“If you support transwomen and they’ve met all the NCAA requirements, I don’t know if you can say something like that. Trans women are not a threat to women’s sport,” the young athlete added.

The remarks come at a time when the success of the University of Pennsylvania students has been a hot subject in the sporting world. Some detractors contend that she shouldn’t be permitted to compete against cisgender women because of the unfair biological advantage that comes with being born a man.

Trans swimmer Lia Thomas nominated for NCAA Woman of the Year award

Thomas continued by claiming that she has actually lost muscle mass as a result of the change. Despite worries about how hormone replacement treatment might affect her physique and her ability to participate in her sport, Thomas started it in 2019 after coming out to her friends and family.

After a year of hormone replacement medication, Thomas was allowed to join the women’s swim team in compliance with NCAA regulations.

The swimmer was nominated for the NCAA’s Woman of the Year award by her college as a show of defiance against any such criticism Thomas and her accomplishments have received.

NCAA’s Woman of the Year award recognizes “female student-athletes who have exhausted their eligibility and distinguished themselves in their community, in athletics, and in academics throughout their college careers.”

Transgender swimmer Lia Thomas nominated for NCAA Woman of the Year award  by Penn | PhillyVoice

The athlete also declared her intention to take part in the 2024 Olympics. Thomas, however, would not be able to participate as things stand since transgender athletes who did not transition before they reached puberty are no longer permitted to compete, according to FINA, the world swimming governing body.

Source: vt.co