Duquesne University in Pittsburgh announced the other day that it will cut men's swimming and diving, men's wrestling, men's golf, and baseball. The combined cuts will result in a $1 million savings. One report claims that the athletic director has said this money will be spread out among the 16 remaining sports. Inside Higher Ed writes that the savings are going to "offset previous budget deficiencies." University officials say that the decision was based on finances, facilities, conference affiliations and support, gender equity, potential success, and overall student-athlete experience.
The people at Collegeswimming.com seem a little miffed that although only men's sports were dropped Title IX was not mentioned in an university press release. Well, one, they did mention gender equity. And two, Title IX is not a reason for dropping sports, it is a factor in which sports are eligible to be dropped--legally. And Duquesne is a small DI-AA school with just over 5,000 undergraduates. Women outnumber men and there is a 93-person football roster. These are some of the realities that schools have to consider. For such a small school to carry 20 varsity teams was, as we see, not sustainable in these economic times.
Duquesne also maintains that the decision will strengthen the overall athletics program.