Release Date: April 3, 2017
BUFFALO, N.Y. — The University at Buffalo is reducing the number of its intercollegiate athletic programs by four, effective at the end of the spring 2017 season.
Affected teams are men’s baseball, men’s soccer, men’s swimming and diving, and women’s rowing. This brings UB’s total sports sponsorship from 20 to 16 teams.
Why is this being done?
This was a very difficult decision. However, the university no longer has the resources to support 20 athletics teams. To remain competitive in the Mid-American Conference, reducing the athletics department to 16 teams is necessary. Doing so, better aligns UB athletics with its MAC peers and positions the athletics department for greater success going forward.
Why is this being done now?
The reduction followed a comprehensive review of the athletics department’s budget as part of the university’s annual resource planning process. This process occurs each year at this time and recently concluded.
How did UB choose which sports would be eliminated?
In making its decision, the university considered these five factors: program costs, athletics’ facilities, Title IX, geographic location and a comparison of sports sponsored by Mid-American Conference schools.
How many student-athletes are affected?
Going forward, we anticipate that 120 student-athletes will be affected.
Will the university assist student-athletes who wish to pursue opportunities at other schools?
Yes. UB is giving affected student-athletes permission to contact any other schools for purposes of transfer. Also, the university will release any affected student-athlete from their national letter of intent to pursue other intercollegiate athletic opportunities.
Will student-athlete scholarships and national letters of intent be honored?
Yes. The university is honoring all national letters of intent and scholarships of affected student-athletes who want to continue their studies at UB 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. For student-athletes who need additional support, staff from UB’s Counseling Services office have been made available.
How much is the university saving by eliminating four sports?
Once fully realized, we estimate cost-savings of approximately $2 million annually.
Is the university considering other reductions in sports programs?
Will the university remain in the Mid-American Conference?
Yes, the university is firmly committed to its membership in the MAC and to Division 1 FBS athletics. We believe that Division 1 athletics are very important to the overall student experience, alumni pride and national visibility at a public flagship university like UB.