Sport Is for Everyone: A Legal Roadmap for Transgender Participation in Sport


  • Erin Buzuvis Western New England University School of Law
  • Sarah Litwin Boston College Law School
  • Warren Zola Boston College



gender identity, equality, Title IX


Sport is a vehicle for social change and should be leveraged as such in 2021 and beyond to address matters of equality. In recent years, the public has paid greater attention to transgender athletes participating in sport at all levels—high school, collegiate, professional, and Olympic—despite the fact that transgender athletes have been competing in sports for decades. Backlash has arisen in general but also more specifically in response to several recent Supreme Court cases that have both solidified and extended rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and other gender and sexual minorities. In turn, state laws that seek to limit the rights of transgender students to participate in sports have been drafted around the country. To be sure, these laws are often built on erroneous data, a misunderstanding of facts, and ignorance, but their existence continues to fuel the public debate on whether transgender athletes should be allowed to participate based on their gender identity or their sex as determined at birth.

Author Biographies

Erin Buzuvis, Western New England University School of Law

Erin Buzuvis, JD, is the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor of Law at Western New England University in Springfield, Massachusetts. She researches and writes about Title IX and gender and discrimination in sport.

Sarah Litwin, Boston College Law School

Sarah Litwin is a JD student at Boston College Law School. Her research interests include technology, education, sports, and employment law.

Warren Zola, Boston College

Warren K. Zola, JD, MBA, is the Executive Director of the Boston College Chief Executives Club and adjunct faculty member in the Carroll School of Management at Boston College. His research interests include the intersection of antitrust and labor law in sports, college athletics, and gender and discrimination in sport.






Original Research