Title IX, which was intended to provide equality to female athletes, would ultimately spell the end of Iowa girls’ 6-on-6 basketball. As other states and colleges began to institute 5-on-5 programs, pressure mounted for Iowa to follow suit, which it eventually did.
The mark left by the 6-on-6 game, however, cannot be denied. Iowa 6 on 6 girls’ basketball will always be remembered as the sport that gave an estimated one million Iowa girls a chance to play competitive sports. Girls’ basketball helped give identity to hundreds of small Iowa towns. The lucky people who lived through the glory days of 6 on 6 will never forget or under-appreciate what the game meant to the state of Iowa. And the hopes and dreams of hundreds of rural communities will never be forgotten.
The popularity of Iowa girls’ 6 on 6 basketball during that period will never again be equaled by any sport on that scale for either gender. The current Iowa girls’ state tournament, which is 5 on 5, is no match for what it was in the 6 on 6 days of yesteryear.