Transgender swimmer Leah Thomas loses bid for NCAA Woman of the Year award.

Leah Thomasthe University of Pennsylvania swimmer who became the first transgender athlete to win an NCAA Division I national championship, has lost her bid to be the 2022 NCAA Woman of the Year.

NCAA announced Her Conference Selection On Monday, Columbia University fencer Sylvie Binder was selected to advance to the next round as the winner of the Ivy League Conference.

Earlier, the University of Pennsylvania reacted after Thomas was nominated for the award. Eligible schools may nominate two female athletes. There were 577 nominees for this year’s award.

Binder, who was one of eight athletes named from the Ivy League Conference, was the 2019 NCAA Women’s Foil Champion. Fox News. She finished third at the NCAA Championships that season with a 17-6 overall record and received the 2022 Women’s Connie S. Maniati Award as Columbia’s top senior student-athlete.

Meanwhile, Thomas ruffled feathers last season as the swimmer set pool, school and Ivy League records. Thomas competed on the men’s team for three years and was ranked 462nd as a male swimmer, but moved to first after joining the women’s team last season.

Thomas won the 500 freestyle at the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships in March, where the swimmer finished fifth in the 200 freestyle and eighth in the 100 freestyle.

Critics pointed out that Thomas had an unfair biological advantage by competing for years as a man. Penn’s swimming parents sent a letter to the NCAA on Dec. 5 asking that Thomas be disqualified from competing in women’s events.

“The integrity of women’s sports is at stake here,” the parents wrote in a letter to Penn and the Ivy League. “The precedent that’s being set — that women don’t have a safe and equal place to compete — is a direct threat to female athletes in every sport. What are the limits? This provides a fair environment for student-athletes. How is the commitment of the NCAA to do?

Thomas Criticism dismissed In an interview with ESPN in May, arguing that “trans women are women.”

“It’s no different than a cis woman getting a spot on a travel team or scholarship,” Thomas said at the time. “It’s part of athletics, where people are competing against each other. It’s not really taking away opportunities from cis women. Trans women are women, so it’s still a woman who gets that scholarship or that opportunity. Is.

Before Thomas joined the women’s team, the NCAA required transgender women to undergo 12 months of hormone therapy to be eligible to compete in the women’s division. Thomas underwent 30 months of hormone therapy at the start of the women’s team season in November 2021.

The NCAA changed its policy in January to defer to the national governing bodies’ policies for each sport in determining eligibility.

USA Swimming announced a new policy a month later requiring biologically male athletes to complete 36 months of testosterone suppression and undergo an eligibility review by a three-person panel.

However, the NCAA did not implement the policy for the 2022 swimming and diving championships. The NCAA implemented a previous policy and required transgender swimmers on the women’s field to have testosterone levels below 10 nanomoles per liter.

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