Riley Gaines, Other Collegiate Athletes Sue NCAA For Allowing Men To Compete In Women’s Sports

Riley Gaines and over a dozen other female athletes filed a lawsuit on Thursday against the NCAA over its policies that allow men to compete in women’s sports.

Gaines, a former swimmer with the University of Kentucky, and other female athletes say that the NCAA’s policies allowing men to compete in women’s sports violate their privacy and has cost them opportunities. Gaines was forced to compete against Lia Thomas, a man who identifies as a woman, at the 2022 NCAA Division I Women’s Championships for swimming. Gaines was also forced to share a locker room with Thomas where he undressed in front of multiple women.

“The NCAA has simultaneously imposed a radical anti-woman agenda on college sports, reinterpreting Title IX to define women as a testosterone level, permitting men to compete on women’s teams, and destroying female safe spaces in women’s locker rooms by authorizing naked men possessing full male genitalia to disrobe in front of non-consenting college women and creating situations in which unwilling female college athletes unwittingly or reluctantly expose their naked or partially clad bodies to males, subjecting women to a loss of their constitutional right to bodily privacy,” the lawsuit says.

🚨it’s official!🚨

I’m suing the NCAA along with 15 other collegiate athletes who have lost out on titles, records, & roster spots to men posing as women

The NCAA continues to explicitly violate the federal civil rights law of Title IX. About time someone did something about…

— Riley Gaines (@Riley_Gaines_) March 14, 2024

Filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, the lawsuit accuses the NCAA and several Georgia universities of violating Title IX, as well as the Equal Protection clause of the 14th Amendment. The lawsuit also accused the NCAA of attempting to chill the free speech of athletes through speech codes that might be interpreted to define any opposition to men competing in women’s sports as “transphobic.”

In addition to Gaines, the others on the lawsuit included Reka Gyorgy, Kylee Alons, Kaitlyn Wheeler, Lily Mullens, Susanna Price, Carter Satterfield, Kate Pearson, Katie Blankinship, Julianna Morrow, Ainsley Erzen, Ellie Eades, and multiple athletes who have chosen to remain anonymous. The athletes include swimmers, track athletes, and volleyball players.

The lawsuit says that the NCAA has been driven by ideology and not science with its policies regarding the participation of transgender-identifying athletes.

“The sole justification of the Association for its discriminatory Transgender Eligibility Policies, which are imposed by the NCAA upon all member colleges and universities in NCAA Divisions I, II and III, is that biological differences between males and females can allegedly be overcome by a program of testosterone suppression in males who identify as transgender,” the lawsuit says.


The athletes argue that the NCAA has pursued radical policies at the expense of female athletes.

“What is disappointing and unlawful is that the NCAA aggressively applies its radical Transgender Eligibility Policies which diminish women’s opportunities despite the clear Title IX imperative to hold separate competitions and separate championships for women where physiological advantages of men preclude mixed (or open) competitions and despite vast scientific and experiential evidence demonstrating the NCAA’s policies harm women,” the lawsuit says.

The lawsuit demands that the NCAA revoke any award or record from any male who has competed as a female and reverse policies allowing males to compete in women’s sports.