BUFFALO, N.Y. — Kim Griffin came to Buffalo on a mission. In her eighth year as the Canisius softball coach, she has the program back where it belongs: in an NCAA Regional.
The Griffs reached their first NCAA tournament since 2009 under Griffin's guidance this year.
Her success, and her job, all came from a chance to play college softball herself.
"It's kind of hard to put into words what sport actually means because it's actually my whole life. ... It really as given me everything," Griffin said.
"I don't know a life before Title IX. I'm 37 years old, and we're celebrating the 50th anniversary. I guess it's kind of amazing to think that that I don't know a life before women in athletics was a thing."
Thursday marks the 50th anniversary of Title IX, providing equal opportunities in college athletics.
The ruling made Senior Woman Administrator a title in every college's athletics department.
"To make sure you have diverse thoughts when you're hiring coaches, hiring staff, you don't have that type of thing going on, and you can get a different side of it. Female athletes are different than male athletes, and vice versa," Canisius Associate Athletics Director and Senior Woman Administrator Lisa Liotta said.
Liotta helps to make those decisions for the Griffs, decisions that helped lead Canisius to NCAAs once again.
"It's exciting to see and to know that if it wasn't for that and the females before me that I wouldn't be able to sit here today and provide that opportunity for somebody else," Liotta said.