SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — According to the NCAA, at the Division I level, 53% of student athletes are male and 47% are female.

For the student athletes who receive scholarships, Title IX plays a role.

According to the NCAA, “Title IX requires that female and male student-athletes receive athletics scholarship dollars proportional to their participation.”

The U.S. Department of Education said Title IX does not require the same number of scholarships for men and women or individual scholarships of equal value. It describes proportional as, “if 60% of an institutions intercollegiate athletes are male, the total amount of aid going to male athletes should be approximately 60% of the financial aid dollars institutional awards.”

The Summit League works within the NCAA scholarship rules. Men’s and women’s basketball as well as FBS football, women’s gymnastics, tennis and volleyball are called count sports. That means the scholarship limit is absolute and the number of athletes receiving awards can’t exceed the number.

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There is a limit of 13 counters in men’s basketball and 15 for women’s basketball.

Head count sports generally award a much higher percentage of full scholarships than equivalency sports, according to the NCAA. Equivalency sports include baseball, softball and others.

Count sports have a limit on scholarships but there are some exceptions such as exhausted eligibility.

The University of Maryland describes an exhausted eligibility scholarship as this: “exhausted eligibility athletic grant is to assist student-athletes who have completed their athletic eligibility to finish their baccalaureate degree.”

Division I schools may pay for student-athletes to finish their bachelor’s or master’s degrees after they finish playing NCAA sports.

Division I schools may provide student-athletes with multi-year scholarships.

The average men’s scholarship at Division I is $18,013. The average women’s scholarship at Division I level is $18,722.

KELOLAND News requested scholarship information from all institutions that participate in the Summit League. All public schools except South Dakota State University and the University of Nebraska Omaha provided information by deadline. Oral Roberts University and the University of Denver, both private schools, did not respond. St. Thomas, a private school, responded with a statement.

In basketball, the number of scholarships offered to men and women are similar. The schools also compare similarly to each other.

But in some cases, the scholarship dollars amounts may seem much higher than in others.

For example, the University of Missouri Kansas City has roughly $500,000 in scholarships for both men’s and women’s basketball. The university does not have football and basketball is highest revenue sport.

Western Illinois offers 10.24 scholarships in men’s basketball and 9.33 in women’s basketball.

That’s fewer than North Dakota State University, which offers 12 in men’s basketball and 13 in women’s basketball. The University of South Dakota is similar; it offers 12.92 in men’s basketball and 17.34 in women’s basketball. USD cited those as total equivalencies, which could include exhausted eligibility or medical-related.

St. Thomas joined the Summit League in 2021. It competes in the league in 19 of its 22 sports, including basketball. It will be eligible for the NCAA post season in 2026.

St. Thomas did not provide specific scholarship information but provided a statement from Phil Esten, the vice president and director of athletics.

“St. Thomas is in year two of a multi-year reclassification process, during which time we are investing in scholarships and operational support at a level we expect is comparable to our conference peers,” Esten said.

In general, the dollar amount of women’s basketball scholarships are higher than the dollar amount of men’s basketball scholarships in the Summit League.

USD men’s basketball scholarships total $333,554. The women’s scholarships total $455,894.

Overall, USD athletic director David Herbster said the university uses the Title IX ratio.

“To maintain equity in scholarship funding we use the Title IX ratio of staying within 1% of the scholarship funding allocation for men’s teams and women’s teams,” Herbster said.

While scholarships for count sports such as basketball are absolute numbers, equivalency sports can split their scholarships. The Summit League limit of 11.7 scholarships or equivalency on baseball but that can be split between 27 players, according to the league.