Copyright © 2018 Albuquerque Journal
In the first major program cuts since 1999, the University of New Mexico Board of Regents voted Thursday to eliminate four Lobo sports teams under a plan they say will improve the ailing athletic department’s overall health.
The governing board approved cutting men’s soccer, men’s and women’s skiing, and women’s beach volleyball despite more than two hours of public comment by opponents. Athletes, coaches, parents, alumni and other community members delivered impassioned pleas and some withering criticism of the proposal advanced by athletic director Eddie Nuñez and President Garnett Stokes. The two called the cuts a critical step toward addressing long-standing financial problems and newly surfaced Title IX compliance concerns.
Their plan also includes phasing out diving from the women’s swimming and diving program, significantly reducing men’s track and field participation slots, and increasing participation opportunities in some women’s programs.