Towson & Mount St. Mary’s Alson Drop Men’s Soccer.
The first this fall to announce the elimination of men’s soccer was the University of Richmond. The demise of the Spiders men’s soccer program, along with track & field, in favor of a new intercollegiate lacrosse program, shocked UR soccer supporters.
Towson was the next to announce that it was also dropping men’s soccer, and then came a similar announcement by Mount St. Mary’s.
Three Middle Atlantic men’s intercollegiate programs are gone.
Towson’s decision also calls for the elimination of the baseball program, the return of men’s tennis and an adjustment in roster sizes of other men’s and women’s sports and will save $800,000 a year.
At Mount St. Mary’s men’s and women’s golf will also cease following the 2012-13 academic year at Mount St. Mary’s, a move that will save the school more than $400,000 annually.
“This is a decision we didn’t want to make, but the budget realities require it to protect and re-invest in our remaining Division I programs,” said Mount St. Mary’s University President Thomas H. Powell in a statement.
The Mount finished with a 4-12-1 record in men’s soccer in 2012.
The day after the Towson announcement was made, the Tigers went out and beat defending CAA champion Delaware, 3-2.
Supporters at each of the three schools have made efforts to generate funds to have the soccer programs reinstated. It was reported that Richmond alumni raised more than $3 to support reversal of the decision to drop soccer and the track & field program.
However, the University of Richmond trustees, at a recent meeting, voted to reaffirm the earlier decision to reorganize the athletic program.
A three-paragraph statement from the trustees began, “The Board of Trustees affirms its September decision to implement a reconfiguration of the university’s Division I athletics program that adds men’s lacrosse and discontinues men’s soccer and men’s indoor and outdoor track. The decision was the result of a thoughtful and deliberate process that involved the highly inclusive development of an athletics strategic plan, extensive research by a knowledgeable and impartial task force, and substantial discussion in multiple board meetings.”