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An NCAA sprinter is breaking women's records—after competing as a man last season

The NCAA doesn't believe a biologically male body is 'automatically' an advantage

AJ Mast/Icon SMI/Corbis via Getty Images

Cece Telfer of Franklin Pierce University is one of the top sprinters in NCAA Division II women's track and field. Just last year, Telfer competed as a man for the same school, in the same division, according to The Daily Caller.

The Franklin Pierce women's track program is enjoying some unprecedented success. In December, it broke into the national top 25 rankings for the first time. And Telfer is among those leading the way.

The senior is the top women's competitor in the 55-meter dash and the 55-meter hurdle events, and was named the Most Outstanding Track Athlete at the Northeast-10 Conference Championship event.

Cece Telfer is formerly known as Craig, who as recently as January of last year competed on the school's men's team. Telfer started going by the name Cece while still competing with the men, before transitioning to women's competition.

According to the website Turtleboy Sports, which researched some of Telfer's statistics as a male competitor, Telfer was an above average male hurdler. Now, with the ability to run with lower hurdles and slower female athletes, Telfer is thriving.

The NCAA has had a policy for transgender athletes for years. It is legal under NCAA bylaws for a biological male to compete in the women's division if that male has suppressed his testosterone levels for one year.

A guidance document on the issue published by the NCAA took the stance that it is not accurate to assume that a male who has transitioned to become a transgender female has an unfair advantage over a biological woman, saying "it is important not to overgeneralize.

As more people identify as transgender, and are encouraged to do so and to receive treatment at younger ages, this issue will become more intensely debated. Disputes over competitive equity involving high school transgender athletes have already made headlines in Connecticut track and field and Texas wrestling.

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