East Carolina University is the latest school to announce the unfortunate cutting of multiple sports teams in the wake of the coronavirus.
College athletics is getting hit hard by the pandemic. Schools are losing revenue and they’re being forced to make tough decisions.
ECU, located in Greenville, North Carolina, announced on Thursday morning that four sports are being cut.
The Pirates announced that men’s and women’s swimming and diving, and men’s and women’s tennis, are being cut. This affects 68 student-athletes and nine coaches.
#ECU the latest to reduce the number of varsity sports programs. Four programs cut: men's and women's swimming and diving, and men's and women's tennis. Impacts 68 athletes and nine coaches.
— Adam Rittenberg (@ESPNRittenberg) May 21, 2020
ECU athletic director Jon Gilbert spoke earlier in the month about the possibility of having to cut some sports.
“I know this topic, as you look at the sustainability report, is one of the things people go to right away,” Gilbert said. “As I look at that recommendation, and the chancellor and I visit, this decision is really gut-wrenching for me personally. It’s not something that an athletic director wants to do. I understand the financial realties of where we are, both athletically and as an institution, but really to respect the process, I want to make sure when we go down that path, that the individuals that are affected, they hear from me first. I’m going to leave it at that.”
ECU is unfortunately not the first school to have to cut sports.
Cincinnati cut men’s soccer while Furman and Bowling Green eliminated their baseball programs.