National Champions! Title IX and the 1978 USU Volleyball Team


Graphic for the Island Market Digital Exhibit

In 1978, the women’s volleyball team won Utah State University its first national championship, the culmination of years of hard work and dedication by the players and coaches. However, the story of these national champions is more than just their victory.  

Women’s sports have existed at Utah State since nearly the beginning of the university, but for decades play was always local, never venturing outside of Cache Valley.  In addition to meager resources and support, the lack of organized leagues hampered opportunities for women’s athletics. The 1970s saw the passage of Title IX and the emergence of women’s sports all over the nation.  

Drawing on university records, newspaper articles, and the players themselves through oral histories conducted by students from HIST 3005 in the spring of 2022, this exhibit celebrates the women’s volleyball team’s 1978 championship and explores the many effects Title IX had on the school, including the challenges of securing resources, facilities, and community support. While progress was slow at times, Title IX has had an undeniable effect on Aggie athletics, giving opportunities to generations of women athletes.   

Project Credits:  

  • Kelly Rovegno (University Archivist): Co-Curator 
  • Dan Davis (Photograph Curator, Instruction Coordinator): Co-Curator
  • Brittany Bertazon (Digital Project Manager)
  • Sydney Lehenbauer (Digital Exhibit Assistant) 
  • Branson Roskelley (Digitization Coordinator) 
  • Darcy Pumphrey (Digital Asset Librarian) 
  • Shay Larsen (Graphic Designer) 
  • Preston Waddoups (Copy Editor) 
  • Kellianne Gammill (Marketing Coordinator) 

      Preferred Citation:

      Rovegno, Kelly & Davis, Daniel. “National Champions! Title IX and the 1978 USU Volleyball Team” online exhibition. (2022). Utah State University Special Collection and Archives. http://exhibits.usu.edu/exhibits/show/volleyball