Akron discontinues men's golf program due to COVID-19 fallout
16 May 2020
by Brayden Conover of AmateurGolf.com
- Akron men's golf photo
With coronavirus (COVID-19) putting a stranglehold on all facets of life, the University of Akron had to make a very tough decision.
The university ended its men’s golf program last week as the institution was forced to make cuts while facing a budgetary shortage due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“To our current student-athletes–I’m so sorry this happened to you,” head coach David Trainor said in a statement released on Twitter. “I will do anything in my power to help you, whether it be to find a new program or give you any advice that I can offer.”
The Zips had just one senior on their 2019-20 roster, Mitchell McFarland. The rest of the team was comprised of three freshmen, two sophomores, and two juniors. The seven non-seniors will have to find a new home, and quickly as right now the fall golf season is still on as scheduled.
The NCAA is still requiring member institutions to have 16 varsity level sports available to student-athletes but is offering one-off waivers on a case-by-case basis as schools are facing a crisis previously unseen. With revenue sports like football and men’s/women’s basketball at the forefront of everyone’s minds when it comes to the NCAA’s decision making during the pandemic, Olympic and non-revenue sports like golf are falling victim to budget cuts.
Akron not only cut the men’s golf program but also men’s cross country and women’s tennis. By eliminating the three athletics programs as well as other undisclosed cuts throughout the school, Akron trimmed $4.4 million from its budget as the school is in the process of lopping off $65 million from its $325 million budget by the end of June.
“Akron is a special place. It’s a good place,” Trainor told Golf Channel’s, Brentley Romine. “I appreciated my time at Akron. I appreciated the people, the administration, everybody involved with that university; it was all first class.”