Students react to UNCW athletic cuts

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — UNCW has had their fair share of financial troubles in the athletic department. Just last year the swimming and diving program was on the chopping block, and now four track and field teams are going to be cut.

With more than 2,000 signatures and counting on a petition to keep the teams alive, student athletes like Samantha Miller aren’t letting the program go down without a fight.

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“If enough people care about out sport and are willing to do something about it, then there’s always that chance that they would be willing to reconsider and keep us as an actual program here”. Said Miller.

Miller created that petition, pleading with the school to rethink their decision to ax the teams.

“They said by cutting us they’re only going to save $250,000-ish dollars” said Miller. “Their deficit is bigger than $250,000 so it’s hard to see cutting a program with 93 athletes in it to kinda end their deficits.”

The President of The Screamin’ Seahawks, a student organization focused on increasing school spirit at sporting events, said that although this may seem like a bad situation for track athletes, he understands why the decision makes sense for the school.

“Since we don’t have a football team, I think our athletics department is not financially stable just yet” said Screamin’ Seahawk President Parker “G” Grissom.

But there is a silver lining. This decision may be a blessing in disguise for the campus community as a call to action to support the sports the school does have. Miller said that she would love to see the stands packed for every sporting event at the university, and that increased community support just might help save other sports from ending up on the chopping block.