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CCSU to eliminate 2 sports, reduce scholarships

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NEW BRITAINCentral Connecticut State University announced Tuesday that they are eliminating two sports and limiting scholarships in efforts to save money.

Mark McLaughlin, Assoc. VP of Marketing & Communications  for CCSU said, “following six months of deliberations by the task force, Central Connecticut State University announced the development and approval of a Blue Devil Athletics Sustainability Plan and the key elements of the plan are:

  • To remain a Division I NCAA Program CCSU to eliminate 2 sports, reduce scholarships
  • To reduce the number of sports from 18 to 16 by the end of the 2018 spring season; the two sports to be eliminated are the Men’s and the Women’s golf programs
  • Phase-in changes of approximately $2 million on an annual basis, which includes the elimination of 35.5 scholarships (phased-in to honor existing commitments)
  • Require full and partial (above tuition and fees) athletic-scholarship recipients to live on campus
  • Implement a formal five-year strategic plan, including a revenue generation campaign
  • Conduct an efficiency review, which will include a review of staffing levels and mix of part-time and full-time positions
  • Implement a multidisciplinary Advisory Committee to enhance the transparency of the Athletics Program
  • Create structural changes in the management of the University and CCSU Foundation, Inc., by eliminating expenses not tied to student success or overall athletic success
  • The University will  match dollar-for-dollar any Athletic Program donations and sponsorships deposited into the CCSU Foundation, Inc., in excess of the five-year average of $580,000, up to a maximum of $150,000, beginning with State FY 2020

“This is a prudent approach to maintaining the excellent collegiate experience CCSU offers. It will also assure that Blue Devil Athletics can provide our student-athletes distinctive opportunities to pursue excellence in competitive sports and in the classroom. I am especially pleased that these recommendations will also enable Central’s Athletics Program to continue to offer our communities in New Britain and Hartford an exceptional level of sports entertainment,” said CCSU President Zulma R. Toro.

Toro added that the decision was not easy and they will regret eliminating two sports.

“I sympathize with the student-athletes and the coaches of those teams who will no longer be able to pursue their competitive sports aspirations at CCSU. I appreciate their gracious acceptance. And I thank the students and their coaches for their cooperation,” said Toro.

Dr. Christopher J. Galligan, Vice President of Institutional Development and Chair of the CCSU Task Force on Athletics Sustainability, issued the following statement:

“Blue Devil Athletics is an important part of the collegiate experience at Central. This plan, with its built-in measures to monitor progress and efficiency in achieving sustainable financing, will enable Central to continue to offer programs of academic and athletic excellence. Of course the loss of two athletics programs affects us all, and I share President Toro’s regrets.

But the continuing decline in state funding and the Athletics Program’s increasing dependence on CCSU Foundation funding made it imperative to reduce the University’s expenses in this area. As the Task Force came to recognize during our deliberations, it also became imperative that we restructure some elements of the funding arrangements for the Program.

I am confident that these steps will help ensure the Programs’ long-term ability to field very competitive teams and contribute its distinctive value to our students, the campus community, and the communities CCSU embraces.”

No other details have been released.