“I didn’t come to Maryland to cut sports.”

Sure.  It just worked out that way.

More than six months after Maryland revealed plans to eliminate eight athletic programsas a way to overcome a multimillion-dollar deficit, Athletic Director Kevin Anderson officially announced Monday that seven of those teams were unable to raise the necessary money for survival.

Men’s and women’s swimming; men’s tennis; women’s water polo; acrobatics and tumbling (formerly known as competitive cheer); and two men’s track programs, cross-country and indoor track and field, were eliminated. Those programs did not show enough progress toward raising eight years’ worth of total costs by June 30.

Anderson still maintains Maryland’s woes are part of a bigger picture of what’s plaguing D-1 athletics – “Anderson called football and men’s basketball ticket sales “very important” to the department’s revenue strategy, but he was quick to point out Maryland isn’t alone on this issue.” – but somebody needs to take a look in the mirror.

Maryland athletics faces such a dire financial situation largely because of declining revenue from its football and men’s basketball programs. After undertaking a $50.8 million expansion of Byrd Stadium in 2006, and accruing approximately $35 million in debt as a result, Maryland saw attendance at football games fall every year until this past season.

Meanwhile, Maryland men’s basketball watched its attendance drop by more than 1,700 fans per game this past season, the steepest decline among ACC schools.

Think the $2 million buyout paid to Friedgen and the $3 million just spent on a new football field wouldn’t come in handy right now?

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6 Comments

Filed under ACC Football, It's Just Bidness

6 responses to ““I didn’t come to Maryland to cut sports.”

  1. El Dawgo in El Paso

    Hard to believe that acrobatics could not raise enough money to survive.

  2. TrinityEer

    They (Maryland) wanted to join the overall level boycott of not playing WVU to help marginalize the ‘Eers but the economics dictate the game continue. Maryland’s only hope to draw a decent crowd in or out of league is West Virginia.

  3. 81Dog

    how long will it be before Georgia Tech is forced to follow this financial model due to its profligate spending on Hew?tt’s contract, the Joke By Coke expansion, the AMC/drive through expansion, and (soon) the buyout for the Mini-Skipper?

  4. Scott

    How expensive can a cross-country program be?

  5. stoopnagle

    Didn’t Love also buyout Gary Williams, too?

    +5 to Scott.