Following its spring announcement that Wright State University was eliminating its men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams because of university-wide budget cuts, Wright State is confirming that the 2017-18 season will be the final season of competition for those teams.
Wright State will not allocate further funding or accept additional external funding to operate the men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams after this season.
Wright State continues to navigate through a difficult budget remediation that includes a $10 million cut this year and must strictly adhere to the budget plan it adopted in June that included significant cuts to athletics.
Student-athletes who remain at Wright State after Spring of 2018 will keep their existing athletic scholarships even though they will not be competing.
The university will help student-athletes who want to transfer in any way it can. Making this decision before Nov. 1 preserves opportunities for the student-athletes who do wish to transfer.
This difficult decision was made by the Department of Athletics and is supported by the Office of the President.
“In the face of adverse financial conditions, many people who love these student-athletes and programs stepped up this summer to make sure they could compete at Wright State for one more year in 2017-18,” said Bob Grant, director of athletics.
“But it is clear we are not able to fund operations of these programs after this season. And counting on external funding alone to pay for operations is not sustainable nor is it fair to the student-athletes and their families because of the uncertainty it creates year-to-year,” said Grant.
The university announced in May the elimination of the programs as a part of the budget remediation process. In June, after passionate pleas at a public session from supporters and student-athletes, the Wright State Board of Trustees asked the director of athletics to work with the interim president to explore the potential of providing one more year of competition.
Later that month, Wright State confirmed that an external fundraising effort to raise $85,000 for one final season of competition had met its goal and the teams would compete on a limited schedule for the 2017-18 season, including the Horizon League Swimming and Diving Championships.
The university encourages fans and families to come out and support the student-athletes in their last year of competition at Wright State beginning with their first meet Saturday, Oct. 28, when the Raiders host Milwaukee.
The season continues with a limited schedule that includes meets with Marshall University, Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis, Cleveland State University, Xavier University and the Horizon League Championships in Cleveland in late February.