Temple University received tremendous backlash from students and alumni for last Friday’s decision to cut seven of its 24 varsity sports at the end of this academic year. The school cited four main reasons for the move — financial problems, concerns over student-athlete welfare, inadequate facilities and lack of compliance with Title IX. It said the cuts would save the school about $3 million from its $44 annual athletics department budget.
Sports business scholars say there are two main issues most likely prompting the decision. Temple’s football program sucks up a large number of scholarships and resources but has traditionally not produced enough revenue to support the remaining varsity programs that do not generate revenue of their own. The school also has yet to reach compliance with Title IX, a 1972 law requiring NCAA member institutions to offer proportional opportunities to male and female athletes and expand opportunities for female athletes.
Ellen J. Staurowsky, a professor of sports management at Drexel University, said the Temple cuts fit with a changing landscape in college sports that includes limited resources and increased competition.
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