With a great athletic financial crisis, Michigan State’s athletic department spent months finding a way to limit the budget loss.
Michigan State’s Athletic Director, Bill Beekman, had heartbreaking news to give those on the Michigan State’s swim and dive team.
“My initial reaction in that room at 4’oclock was this feeling of paralysis,” sophomore Travis Nitkiewicc said.
“A lot of people got angry immediately. For me, it was a numb reaction,” senior Elise Tuke said.
“It’s a weird experience having to continue the season know this,” senior Taylor Arnold said.
Knowing that to of the other 23 Division 1 sports at Michigan State, the swim and dive team was the program to be cut.
“Initially we felt completely blindsided and deflated,” Nitkiewicc said.
Since the men’s gymnastics team being cut in 2001, this is the first time Michigan State has cut a varsity sport. Michigan State is also the 8th Division 1 school to cut its swim and dive program; leaving its facilities vacant.
“It’s really tragic because this isn’t only happening to us, it’s happening to a lot of other schools. I think that the fight is worth it,” Arnold said.
Beekman said, “the decision to discontinue the programs is final.” But why cut the swim and dive team?
“I think part of the reason they wanted us cut is because of our facilities. Our outdoor pool is broken,” Nitkiewicc said.
“I think it’s more the idea of they feel they can’t put the money into our program that we need to improve,” Turke said.
Arnold said, “We have no way to know if it’s going to come back or not, but that’s the goal.”
The 2020-2020 season is the last for the swim and dive team. MSU will continue giving scholarships to those who finish their undergraduate degree at Michigan State and will help those who want to transfer to another institution.