IHSAA recognizes girls wrestling, boys volleyball as emerging sports

More states sanctioning girls wrestling programs, opening up sport to women
Posted at 7:16 PM, May 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-02 19:16:58-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Parents or guardians of young girls interested in wrestling and boys interested in volleyball have reason to celebrate today as the IHSAA took a step in accepting both sports.

The IHSAA Board of Directors voted unanimously at their annual review of by-laws to add girls wrestling and boys volleyball to its new Emerging Sport Process.

The Emerging Sport Process was approved a year ago by the IHSAA Board of Directors. The rule helps pave a way for those sports and participation to continue to grow with an eye toward eventually becoming a recognized sport and sponsorship of an official state tournament.

These are the first two sports to earn the designation.

With the designation, the IHSAA will now provide rule books, conduct coaches rules meetings and provide coverage in the IHSAA’s Catastrophic Medical program.

Both sports will now be subject to all IHSAA rules and policies, including the General Eligibility Rules.

For either sport to eventually be recognized and for a state tournament to be sponsored, 50% of all member schools must participate in the sport. As of today, there are 407 IHSAA member schools.

There are currently 42 schools fielding boys volleyball teams and 113 schools participating in the girl’s wrestling state tournament.

Along with the emerging sport recognition, the board of directors also approved a reduction to the waiting period to become a full member school and participate in IHSAA state tournaments from four years to three years.