Committee recommends cutting five UNCW sports programs

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Submitted: Thu, 05/16/2013 - 3:42am
Updated: Thu, 05/16/2013 - 12:53pm

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A committee commissioned by UNCW’s chancellor to study the sustainability and vitality of the school’s 19 sports programs has recommend the university cut five of the teams.

The committee’s report released today recommends the elimination of men’s and women’s swimming & diving, men’s cross country, men’s indoor track and softball. The recommended reductions would cut 117 student athletes.

Click here to read the committee’s full report

The committee recommends honoring honor all scholarship commitments to current student athletes through graduation, as long as they remain in good standing and make satisfactory progress toward a degree per NCAA eligibility regulations.

If the sports teams are cut, newly recruited players for those teams should be notified immediately, the report recommends, and provide those athletes a release from their National Letter of Intent.

The report says the UNCW Athletics Department is facing a “fiscal crisis.” The report notes that the department’s reserve fund has experienced an 82-percent decrease since 2009. In the current fiscal year, the report says, the university will likely need to cover a projected $600,000 shortfall. Also, it says the Seahawk Club has raised just $460,000 as of May 1. That’s just 44 percent of the budgeted target of $1.047 million for the booster club.

WWAY Sports Director John Rendleman will have more on the report’s recommendations coming up on WWAY NewsChannel 3 starting at 5 p.m.


  • Guest123123 says:

    Glad my son got an appointment to West Point. Apllied here also.

  • Guest1971 says:

    I love your common sense on this issue.

  • Vog46 says:

    That Men’s Basketball had revenues of $539K or thereabouts but had expenses of $1.6M yeah thats million?

    And we think about across the board cuts as being more effective?
    One of the BIG problems is the set up of the CAA.
    Regular member universities are spread from SC and GA to NY and Mass all the way to Ohio.
    Associated member stretch from Maine to Ohio and in between.
    Travel is a huge cost for college sports.
    If we were to say “bus everywhere” then teams would be on the road forever OR they’d have to re-align conferences. Of course some people, including me, think the CAA will fold shortly anyway.
    We need a littl more info here. I would like to research the sports budget but that will take some time and right now I’m just a tad busy but in the meantime I would hope that John R could get on the ball and talk to the folks at UNCW about those costs and publish them?


  • John says:

    I’m sure UNCW could save money by being apart of another league. For softball to travel to Drexel, Towson, Delaware, Hofstra, etc… is not cheap. Seems to me that they would they would benefit if they played in the Big South..

  • Vog46 says:

    ” It is insane to cut a team that has won their conference 12 years in a row.”

    And it’s equally insane to keep a program that draws less than 100 attendees to it’s swim meets while costing the university hundreds of thousands of dollars.

    it’s also insane to bill students for this through fees when less than 2% actually play or attend sporting events.


  • TKDChc says:

    The increase in fees I was referring to was to build the student recreation center. The SRC has nothing to do with student athletes and functions as a place for the entire student body to work out in. They also run student inter-mural and club sports. It is for the general student body, so the general student body paid for it with fees. I only mentioned it, because guest206 was implying that the pool within the rec center was for swim team use, which is not the case, it is for students, staff and faculty to use to improve their overall fitness and well being.

  • Vog46 says:

    My bad
    I apologize


  • Guest Blame Rosie says:

    This is the ever lingering effect of Rosie, Cappacio and Mertens.
    Rosie and Cappacio ran off the money maker, Brownell. As an alumni
    my money stopped going to the school then as a protest. UNCW could
    not make a smart athletic decision the last few years and the alumni
    voiced their opinion the only way that worked where people would
    listen, withholding their money. Most alumni want to see UNCW make
    it back to the point where they were ten years ago, but UNCW has to
    take the responsibility on this problem. Inept leadership for several
    years at the chancellor level, AD and Seahawk Club, all complete
    disasters. I feel for the kids on these teams who may not be able
    to compete for the school due to incompetent leadership.

  • Vog46 says:

    So – let me get this straight. You supported the students through donations as an alumni?
    Then “as a protest” to Letting Bronwell go you stopped donating ? You let the students down because of a personality “thing”?
    With alumni like you it’s no wonder they are cutting some sports.
    Either support them or not but don’t play this I stopped as a protest to Brownell being let go thing.
    What childish, boorish, behavior. It’s about the student athletes, not you Rosie and Brad……


  • Don't care says:

    Seems to me that having all the lowest expenditures is a positive thing. The problem lies in that they are only the lowest due to the fact that they are last in total revenues.

  • Vog46 says:

    says it all:

    • Incomparison to UNCW’s CAA peers,we are:
    1. Last in total revenues;
    2. Last in total athletic expenses;
    3. Last in average total expenses per sport;
    4. Last in total expenses per participant;
    5. Last in Men’s total expenses per sport;
    6. Last in Women’s total expenses per sport;
    7. Next to last in Men’s total expenses per participant;
    8. Last in Women’s total expenses per participant;
    9. Last in Men’s operating expenses per sport;
    10. Last in Women’s operating expenses per sport;
    11. Last in Men’s sports operating expenses per participant;
    12. Last in Women’s sports operating expenses per participant.

    I will give them credit for being brutally honest but they need to cut more


  • Vog46 says:

    From the report:
    “Lastly, there was overall agreement that coaching salaries is not competitive across the board;operating budgets prohibit the level of recruitment necessary to find the right athletes; travel accommodations and CAA schedules negatively affect the student athlete experience; and the lack of trainers and strength and conditioning staff impacts student well being and competitiveness.”

    Um – coaching salaries not competitive? Operating budgets too low? travel accommodations affecting the “student experience”, and the need for more trainers and staff?

    Get off your collective butts Alumni and Booster clubs – they’re asking for more, a LOT more $. Physical plant needs upgrade?
    How about not pouring anymore money down a endless rabbit hole???


  • Vog46 says:

    I have been very critical of UNCW sports and the lack of support from alumni and booster clubs. Cutting these programs is a start but there is more work to do.
    You SHOULD NOT charge all students fees to support athletics – that is socializing the losses for a very few participants. If a sport cannot be self sustaining it should be terminated.
    Yes I played sports and loved the team concept.
    But the main goal of a college or university is to educate. Only about 2% of the student body takes part in sports. Lets face it, UNCW, UNC-Asheville, and UNCP are not sports juggernauts. They have few if any endorsement deals and no TV revenue sharing rights with conferences etc……so why bother?
    Don’t try to be someone else like UNC Chapel Hill, or Duke or NC State.
    Imitation is sometimes called the sincerest form of flattery – it is also the basis for a lot of fiscal irresponsibility. UNCW has that very problem.
    Live within yourselves, UNCW.


  • Guest2609 says:

    Explain the funding of a new student rec center with a brand new swimming pool that will be used by whom if we have no swimming or diving team.

    Explain how it is worth it to keep the men’s basketball coach that is paid over $400K and can’t even have a winning season.

    Maybe if we got rid of the men’s basketball coach (savings of $400K)and trimmed some fat by firing overpaid useless employees (savings of at least 3 million per year) we would be able to keep these student athletes in the sports that they worked so hard through their high school years with dreams of pursuing in college.

    It seems that since this new Chancellor has arrived, things are getting cut that he doesn’t or his wife, Georgia necessarily likes. We didn’t choose you to turn UNCW into a below average university. We chose you because you stated you had big dreams for this university. Chancellor Miller where are all those big dreams you proposed.

    While I understand the need to cut expenses, there are many many, more ways to accomplish this on UNCW’s campus. There are many employees who sit in offices with nothing to do except text and facebook. Many of these employees acknowledge they have nothing to do. Let’s start by looking at each department and see if we really need 4 people to do the job of 2, or combine jobs. Do we really need as many levels of supervision within the university? We have managers, directors, associate directors, assistant directors, assistant vice chancellors, vice chancellors, for what, many of these jobs can be combined. It is no wonder that State employees get the bad rep that they do.

  • Tkdchc says:

    To reply to the comment about the rec center. The expansion was paid for by an increase in student fees starting with the class of 2007, and was never meant to be used by the swim team. That pool is for the rest of the student body, the rec center is for all student, not for team practices. The rec center was not paid for by athletics.

    I totally agree with the large amount of inefficient spending by the university, but the rec center pool is not for the swim team. It is insane to cut a team that has won their conference 12 years in a row.

  • Guest2255 says:

    Uhhh, the pool at the Student Recreation Center has nothing to do with athletics – it’s at the Student Rec Center- it’s not a competition-sized pool.

    I can’t explain why the basketball coach gets that kind of money…or the athletic director. But I certainly understand the rationale for cutting sports that don’t drawn any revenue or spectators. No matter how many titles or awards you’ve won, no revenue means no play in this economy. Seems pretty simple.

    So, how does cutting non-revenue generating, pitifully-attended sport teams make UNC-W a “below-average” university…specifically? It isn’t “tradition”. If that were true, alumni, especially former athletes, would be stepping up to help fund these programs through donations. And it can’t be the responsibility of the dwindling numbers of the Seahawk Club to prop up sports that even they don’t attend.

    When you don’t come out to support the program – students and the Wilmington community- you don’t get to cry foul when the program get cut.

  • Vog46 says:

    The purpose of a University is to educate NOT provide for sports.
    This is sometimes forgotten by sports fans everywhere.
    I am sure there are things that could be cut but when you consider how team sports conducts business you can see the biggest cuts are to those programs.
    If the UNCW Swim team has 20 members and 2 coaches that’s not a BIG expense. Take that team on the road for meets at other CAA locations and the budget for that small team balloons to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
    And for what? the camaraderie? Please. When at home that same team draws only 100 fans?

    The issue here is support plain and simple and the LACK of it from Alumni and Boosters. I am vehemently opposed to charging a fee on ALL students to support sports for less than 2% of the student population. That is socializing the losses.


  • truthseeker says:

    You have a basketball coach making 400 K a year with a losing team. The entire athletic dept. at UNC-W is amateurish with exception of the Baseball Team. Just cut it all out and concentrate on innermural teams with students at the University and award small tokens such as small cash awards for excellence, sportsmanship and individual effort.

  • GuestGuest says:

    How about cutting the budget of all sports, rather than eliminating some? Isn’t cross-country one of the least expensive sports to fund? Why is this on the chopping block? If you already have a pool and a softball field and an indoor track, what’s the logic of cutting those programs? Please try to make even cuts across all sports and let all teams stay, albeit in a reduced format. Thanks for your consideration.

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