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Men’s soccer and baseball programs cut

8 March 2013 By Jeremy Bauer-Wolf, Editor-in-Chief, Alena Schwarz, Sports Editor 39 Comments
Matthew Hazlett/ The Towerlight

Matthew Hazlett/ The Towerlight

University President Maravene Loeschke announced in a press release Friday morning that she had approved of the recommendations to cut the sports of baseball and men’s soccer.

This will be the last season for Towson baseball and the men’s soccer program has been discontinued effective immediately, according to the release.

Loeschke’s recommendation follows the same one originally submitted by Director of Athletics Mike Waddell in October, which is to cut the two sports and add a men’s tennis team. Waddell said in his recommendation the cuts should be made to maintain long-term fiscal solvency of the athletics department and the gender equity requirements of Title IX, which says all student athletes must match the gender proportionalities on campus.

Loeschke’s release states Towson will honor all scholarships of athletes who stay, and that she took into consideration the task force’s recommendations.

“The process has been lengthy and challenging for many in our TU community, especially for the 62 student athletes in these programs,” she said in the release. “The seriousness of this situation required this extended amount of time to thoroughly analyze each and every suggested option in order for me to come to this conclusion.”

Loeschke originally said she would make a final decision regarding the cuts in mid-November, which has caused grumblings among student athletes.

Loeschke’s full recommendation can be viewed on the task force’s website.

The Towerlight will update this story as more information becomes available.


39 Comments »

  • Michael Smith said:

    I must admit that I am biased in any response I make to this story as I am an alum who played Varsity Soccer at TU. I would like to see spelled out to me where removing the Men’s Soccer Program and Men’s Baseball program and re-instituting the Men’s Tennis Program would support “gender equity requirements of Title IX, which says all student athletes must meet the gender proportionalities on campus.” I am just wondering if Mr. Waddell is hiding behind Title IX and using Title IX as substantiation for the removal of the programs?

  • concerned alum said:

    A sad day for Towson University. Amazing how one individual can impact so much change (especially negative change) in such a short tenure as athletic director. For the sake of the university’s brand, integrity, and tradition, it is time for the dictator to go and a new leader to emerge.

  • Amateur Proofreader said:

    There’s a word missing at the end of the 3rd graf.

  • All Hail said:

    Mike Waddell should rot in hell for his actions at Towson. His unmonitored spending spree stopped the minute Dr. Loeschke arrived, but it was too late. He had already blown through all reserves and created a debt of nearly $4 million. Now the students and campus have to pay the price for his actions. I hope it is cold and dark on the unemployment line Mr. Waddell.

  • Sandy True said:

    Mike Waddell is to blame for all of the problems. He is the leader of the athletic department, he has been in that position for almost 3 years. He is the problem. FIRE MIKE WADDELL!

  • baseball fan said:

    Towson president shows her class. She gets the baseball team together at the last minute. Comes to room surrounded by security. tells them they are done and hands a pink slip to the coach. All this 3 hours before a game. What a rotten classless thing to do to these kids.Great timing. Shows you don’t need any common sense to the the college president. she should step down for the way she handled the situation. Embarassing

  • fan said:

    Lets sellout baseball and soccer for football and hoop.You have a football coach who swears on national TV and makes anti religious comments. You have a basketball team on probation. The AD wadell who over spends. And a president who thinks this is the way to go. The old girl is senile. Its time for her to step down.

  • baseball parent said:

    Blacking out the Towson on the baseball jersey was great. A school that turned their back on the kids and coach. Was the presidents meeting before the game her way of showing compassion. She should be fired

  • tu fan said:

    Way to go Mrs President. keep teams that can’t remain eligible to play due to bad grades but cut sports that have high academic standards and high GPA’s. GREAT EXAMPLE FOR YOU INSTITUTION. YOU SHOULD BE ASHAMED AT THE WAY THIS SITUATION WAS HANDLED

  • Real Fan said:

    There is no need to tear down this years basketball team to prop up your point about baseball and soccer. That’s classless. The basketball kids at Towson now had nothing to do with the academic penalities that are being levied against this group of Tigers. But hey, don’t let the facts get in the way of your rant. All teams should be supported and it is a sad day when cuts are made. Did you read the report that was released today? I did and while am sad that Towson no longer has a soccer for men or a baseball team after this spring I can see the logic in the decision that the President has made.

  • tu fan said:

    not meant to tear any team down just a poor decision by the AD and Pres as it is obvious that the words student athlete mean nothing to them

  • TU Alum said:

    Too bad there is no Title IX for the Theater Department. They are certainly doing better under this president.

  • Wallace said:

    Don’t blame the President, When she arrived at Towson it was already too late. The entire blame goes on Mike Waddell. This was his plan when he arrived on campus almost 3 years ago. He was going to pump all this money into basketball and football at any cost. Well, he failed to sell tickets and raise money and now the department is in a $4 million hole. He blew through all the reserves and dug a deep hole. Mike Waddell is the problem and his departure from Towson would be the solution.

  • Real Fan said:

    Where do of get this 4 million dollar figure from? I read the report that was put out yesterday and it laid out the budget clearly. No where was this figure mentioned and it showed that there is still a reserve being used for the next two years.

  • fan said:

    Great way that the president handled it yesterday. Did her security team drive her to the nursing home. She is a liar. 3 hours before a game. I wish the worst for her and wad head. You don’t treat your students like that they are an embarrassment and should step down. No class low class.

  • Sean said:

    I’m not a “Towerlight Hater”, the type of person who trolls the site expressing what I believe to be shortcomings…but I WOULD like to see some more depth to this issue. I personally don’t care too much about the athletics at Towson, but to some people – especially the players – this is important, and when claims made in other comments seem like possibilities (the debt of the program, the “blacking out” of the word Towson on the jersey, the pink slip three hours before a game), those are important things to address. The sports editor isn’t going to have a bigger story this year, don’t let this be a one-issue topic…get contacts, get people to tell you things even off the record…I get the feeling the story is not so simple. Also, I left TU before the new president started, but even I know this was unavoidable on her end, so blaming it on her and calling for her to step down is just dumb.

  • Inside Auburn said:

    The report is a farce and fabricated to make one person look good, the same one that put that report together. The debt is there and mounting. That is why current fundraisers have been put under severe pressure from the One who has done all the spending. That is a fact. This is and has always been a financial issue. All the rest was a smokescreen to divert attention as other “supposed” issues have been refuted and then changed to fit the story time and time again. The article in the Baltimore Sun clearly lays out that plan. Aka lying or changing the truth to fit your excuse, depends on your side of the ethics fence. It was also interesting that the President chose to address the fact that the AD had not mishandled funds, first time brought up publicly, but showing cards now. If that is not the case why has hiring been put on a hold and reigned in and why even bring that up? That is a fact and can be verified. If they are audited by independent counsel they will find negligent spending at a time when they were considering dropping programs and trying to be what they are not. The President has also followed this course of additional lies by stating that Towson representatives were in talks with esteemed Baseball and Soccer alumnus, John Schuerholz, about taking his name off the Baseball Stadium and putting it on another building, a great solution if you are a part of the Spin Doctor administration, but not for a man who clearly wanted it on the Baseball Stadium. It is a slap in the face. Once again lying comes into play because Mr. Schuerholz stated that he had never been contacted about that. Stating that, “The next conversation I have with them about what they plan to do with the Stadium or the money I’ve given will be the first.” Just wait, there will be another retraction about that soon. That is also a part of the Baltimore Sun article. Rumor has it that Towson will be changing their name from the Towson Tigers to the Towson Lions but spelt, Lyins’. The lessons that you (AD and President) have taught these student-athletes and your student population at large, will become a part of their fabric and keep you up at night, if you have a conscience, which is debatable. They will not trust people in positions of power who can manipulate their lives with no empathy about the consequences…and no acting job telling them how sad you are will ever be accepted. The actor has to actually believe the script for it to sound genuine. It was obvious that the President did not.

  • tu fan said:

    Mike Waddell has cooked the books. There are many sets of numbers being used and none of them are correct. I am sure an independent investigation by the NCAA or Board of regents would be very interesting. Trying to hide behind title 9? You will be exposed for you carless spending Mike Waddell. Why do you think Devin Crosby, deputy athletic director, left in the middle of the investigation? He did not want to be tied to Waddell’s misappropriation of funds

  • Tu alum said:

    Waddell is doing exactly what the President wants. She extended his contract last year until 2014. Waddell gets to keep his job because he lets many of you blame him for this. Did you look at how she cut football at Mansfield? It was done in the same way as she did at Towson.

  • Dudley Dawson said:

    Good Point TU Alum. I think what everyone has to realize here is that Granny Latchkey was brought here to cut the budget just like she did at Mansfield. Is it any wonder she cut the budget their, cut programs, retrenched faculty and is now doing it at TU. She was so bad at Mansfield they passed a vote of NO Confidence in her. She will take the fall for all the “bad decisions” and cuts at towson and will be replaced next year. But rest assured none of the programs she cut will be coming back. She is a wolf in sheeps clothing. I think the TU Community needs to get together and decide their own fate. Perhaps a vote of no confidence is due here… These cuts are just the beginning. Mark my words.

  • Dudley Dawson said:

    “MANSFIELD – In a sudden about-face from their past position, the faculty at Mansfield University have expressed a vote of “no confidence” in their president, Dr. Maravene Loeschke, and provost, Dr. Peter Keller.

    The faculty retrenchments announced in September and October were reduced to five, according to Dr. John Ulrich, a tenured professor in the English and languages department, who will lose one faculty member out of his department.

    Ulrich said the vote came about as a result of a faculty assembly meeting held Nov. 1 on campus.”

    Ulrich said that though the retrenchments and program cuts were part of the reason for the vote, “much of it concerned the process of decision-making at Mansfield,” which he described as being “not real open and clear.”

  • Dudley Dawson said:

    But the bottom line, Loeschke said, was that Mansfield couldn’t afford to keep it. Mansfield’s total budget is just under $40 million — with more than $3 million going to athletics, and the university facing a total budget shortfall of $1.4 million. The university spends about $500,000 a year on football, and athletics officials have estimated that the university would need to spend another $500,000 on facilities and other improvements to make the team competitive.

    . At Mansfield, the university has said explicitly that the cuts are being made for budgetary reasons, not because of Title IX. However, it does appear that the university may be out of compliance with Title IX now, and might be in compliance without the football team.

    Hmmmm. Sounds familiar. Faculty Retrenchments are next as are staff lay offs. Long time faculty will be cut and replaced with part time lecturers. The writing is on the wall people..

  • Frustrated said:

    It is sickening to see these baseball and soccer players thrown under the bus so that an ambitious Athletic Director can spruce up his resume in preparation for his next job. (Spend more money on assistant coaches and facilities to attract more talented high school athletes, win a few more games, then leave TU for a job with a flagship athletic program!) Title IX could have been satisfied in other ways, as other news stories have shown. Title IX was just an excuse to justify the diversion of funds to two marquee sports.

    Maryland is a small state that already has pro football and baseball teams, major college football and basketball programs at College Park, along with pro football, baseball and basketball in Washington DC. The money being thrown at football and basketball here is about career ambitions, not what’s in he best interest of our students. And if the idea is to raise TU’s profile through athletics, then do it with the less epxensive sport – basketball – the way Seton Hall, Oral Roberts and many other schools have done.

    Plus, one of TU’s stated goals is to attract and retain male students and international (i.e. full tuition-paying) students. If so, elminating two of the most popular sports in the world is the most foolish thing can be done. For a university with 20,000 students, having only six men’s intercollegiate sports (oops, seven – I forgot tennis) is a joke, and it will only make these goals harder to attain.

    And finally, let’s not forget the mult-hundred thousand dollar salaries of the Athletic Director, the football coach and the basketball coach. If the so-called study group was looking to save some money, they missed the most obvious place to start.

  • baseball parent said:

    apparently with the large police presence the president underestimated the character of these kids. Throughout this whole ordeal they have been respectful and conducted themselves as gentlemen. Obviously this was not something they learned from their president. She should be ashamed of herself for the way she announced her decision to these kids.Regardless of the decision being right or wrong.She owed it to these kids and coaches to tell them of her decision in a better way. she really owes them and the coaches an apology. For someone in her position to feel that she needed more security then Obama is insulting to all involved. We raised our children to be gentleman. I don’t know how she raised hers. She should step down.

  • Mike said:

    Her transparency and”sadness” are just a giant facade. She’s unfit to run this university, she couldn’t even run Mansfield University, a college with only ~3400 students.

  • Tu2014 said:

    Next step, shes gonna announce building a new theater building right over the baseball field.

  • tu fan said:

    SInce Maravene and the AD would not provide anyone with numbers during this farce I would love for the Towerlight to dig in and expose the real numbers behind Waddell’s overspending. Maybe they will have to provide them to you.

  • TU Supporter said:

    The past 6 months have been a demonstration in the total lack of leadership by the President and a manipulation of facts by the AD. If anyone reads the final report presented to the Bd. of Regents and to the press on Friday and looks at the roster numbers in this report there are substantial variances from all the other roster #’s previously presented and current on the TU Athletic website. The misrepresentation in just 4 sports alone causes a variance of 55 roster positions towards the case of Title IV compliance issues. What I don’t understand is how or why the President would present this official document to the Regents and the press without checking the validity of such important facts. Did anyone in her office put the time or effort to verify these obviously misstated roster #’s which are so critical to the underpinnings of her canceling these 2 sports. Did she not care or is she that incompetent!
    In regards to the AD there are only two ways to look at how these #’s could be so far off- either an incredible level of incompetence or an intentional misrepresentation of facts to hide his inability to manage a budget. You can pick either one but for either he should be fired!
    TU has been on a great run ever since Dr. Caret and Jim Clements (Provost-now President at WVU and a rockstar) took over the leadership of the University. It has only taken the new President less than a year to reverse the course and put TU in the newspapers for all the wrong reasons!

  • baseball parent said:

    The president will be remembered as a liar. Something the old girl seems to be proud of.

  • SoWhat said:

    The team should continue to cover up the “Towson” on their uniforms. The school doesnt want them so why should they honor the school. This is a coverup for the AD’s wasteful spending.

  • TU Alumni Former Donor said:

    Unpopular decisions are often released at the end of a week on Friday’s in an attempt to minimize impact, termed “dumping the trash” in the media. This term certainly shouldn’t be applied to the Men’s Soccer and Baseball teams who hold the highest GPA’s in Men’s sports at Towson (with the exception of men’s golf with a 9 player roster). That these two sports only represented a paltry 3% of the total athletic budget, after a two year 2.5 million dollar increase in spending by the athletic dept. makes the decision all the more outrageous. Everybody now knows the Title IX excuse was a TOTAL LIE. AD Waddell is the real piece of trash, a term which can now be tagged to Loeschke. Loeschke’s long-term legacy in only her first year is killing two hallmark Towson programs. Loeschke can take solace in the fact that she’s permanently tarnished her reputation and credibility at her alma mater. Rest assured the donor list and future enrollments will be affected more than assumed, that’s a promise….

  • TowsonTiger2000 said:

    I’m sorry to hear about the soccer program getting cut but I’m incensed about the baseball team getting axed. I would love to hear what TU baseball patriarch John Schuerholz has to say about this decision. What kind of university in the USA cuts BASEBALL?!! Is Waddell a communist?

  • Philip Morrison said:

    It is a shame that the AD is such a buffoon.

    A much bigger shame is the president’s actions.

    This is a wretched decision, completely unfounded.

    The president’s statement i so full of untruths… too many to list here.

    A shame.

  • jojo said:

    Perhaps a vote of no confidence in the president initiated by the students?

  • SoWhat said:

    Apparently they continue to lie by saying they talked to Schuerholz about naming another complex for him. When asked by the media about a second talk he said the second talk would be the first talk he has had with them because the first conversation never took place. A vote of no confidence is absolutely necessary. The problem is the board of regents rubber stamped the president’s decision based on the blatently false information provided by the administration.

  • SoWhat said:

    The actions by this alumnus are despicable. She was escorted into a meeting with baseball players by armed security as if she feared for her safety. She talked for three minutes and left without taking quesions or comments. While this was going on the coaches were elsewhere being given their termination letters. To add insult to injury the soccer coaches name was spelled wrong on his HR forms. Hardly any of the baseball team was there because they were told by e-mail to be at the Minnegan room 15 minutes before the meeting. It is unknown if any soccer players were there. It’s insulting she held this meeting during normal class hours ensuring many would not be able to make it. She needs to go, Waddell needs to go. The University system needs to investigate where the surplus of money went. It’s not surprising that the program is now in a deficit following raises for staff in the Athletic department to the tune of 1.6 million. The towerlight writes alot of useless fluff pieces but the sportswriters need to demand answers. They cannot let this story fade in our memories. The attitude of the president that she is somehow above reproach and is therefore exempt from explaining herself to parents and players is the very definition of elitism. She thinks that she is better than them. We need to act now before she does to Towson what she did to Mansfield.

  • SoWhat said:

    The towerlight needs to talk to Kieth Mills with WBAL, a TU alum and supporter about his thoughts on this issue.

  • Tyler said:

    I’m glad that TU’s baseball and soccer teams were cut. They really hurt the funding for scarves, acting theatres and tiger statues.

  • Tu2014 said:

    I see what you did there Tyler….well put!!!

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