Frequently Asked Questions: Athletics sports reductions

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is this being done?

The action is being taken as part of the University’s overall budget restructuring efforts. The University asked Athletics to reduce its budget by $2 million for fiscal year 2019 and beyond.

Why is this being done now?

There is never an ideal time to make an announcement like this. However, the decision was made to do so in mid-March to allow the student-athletes as much time as possible to find new schools at which they can continue in their sport, if they choose to do so. This also allows the coaches affected time to find new positions.

How did EMU choose which sports would be eliminated?

The University considered many factors, including: program cost, athletic facilities (current and on-going), and a comparison of sports sponsored by Mid-American Conference (MAC) schools.

How many student-athletes are affected?

Based on current rosters, we anticipate that 83 student-athletes (58 male and 25 female) will be affected. Fourteen of the 83 are currently seniors who will exhaust their eligibility during the 2017-18 academic year.

How many coaches and staff members are affected?

Eight full-time coaches, one graduate assistant, and one part-time assistant coach are affected by the move. When considered with the layoffs of 17 people from staff positions that the University announced earlier this month, Athletics positions account for 32 percent of the overall reduction in staff.

Will the University assist current and incoming student-athletes who wish to pursue opportunities at other schools?

Yes. All affected student-athletes have been provided with permission to contact any other institutions for purposes of transfer. Coaches and staff will support these individuals through the transition process. Also, the University will null and void all National Letters of Intent (NLI) for individuals who had planned to come to EMU and participate in any of the sports being discontinued, so that they may pursue other intercollegiate athletic opportunities.

Will student-athlete scholarships be honored?

Yes. The University is honoring all scholarships of affected student-athletes who want to continue their studies at EMU and who remain eligible in accordance with university and athletics department policies. 

What other support is the University providing to affected student-athletes?  

Members of the athletics administration are available to discuss scholarship and transfer information as well as provide academic advisement. EMU Senior Associate Athletic Directors Erin Kido (softball), Mike Malach (men’s swimming & diving), and Dan McLean (wrestling/women’s tennis) are available to setup meetings by calling 734.487.1050. For student-athletes who need additional support, staff from EMU's Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) office will be made available by calling 734.487.1118.

Is the University considering other reductions in sports programs?


Will the University remain in the MAC?

Yes, the University is firmly committed to its membership in the MAC and to Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS). EMU is pleased to be a member of an outstanding conference where our sports and talented student-athletes have the opportunity to compete at the highest levels with our neighboring institutions.

When was the last time a MAC school eliminated sports?

Last spring, the University at Buffalo eliminated four sports (men’s baseball, men’s soccer, men’s swimming and diving, and women’s rowing) to reduce UB’s total sports sponsorship from 20 to 16 teams.










March 20, 2018

Written by:
Geoff Larcom

Geoff Larcom