University of Richmond (my Alma mater) is Cutting it’s Track and Field Program: Support Them By Signing Their Petition

I was surprised to open up the Let’s Run homepage today and see the name of my undergraduate Alma mater featured front and center. Turns out the University of Richmond, which I attended from 1993-1997, is cutting their indoor and outdoor track and field programs and the men’s soccer program to make way for a men’s lacrosse team. Here’s a local news report describing the situation:

WRIC Richmond News and Weather –

The Richmond T&F coach indicates in the video that if Track and Field is cut, cross-country will die out shortly thereafter. I find this disturbing as both an alumnus and a college professor because Track and Field athletes are often models of the ideal scholar-athlete (the XC coach at my college of employment has been trying for years to add a varsity Track and Field program with little luck). Indeed, in the text of a petition put together by the team, they indicate that in Spring 2011 the UR track team had the highest team GPA all DI outdoor Track and Field teams. It is a sad reality that college sports are often driven more by decisions revolving about revenue generation and enrollment than the achievements of the student athletes, and this seems to be a perfect example of that.

I write this post to encourage you to head over and support these student athletes by signing their petition to save the sport, the text of which is below:

On September 21st, 2012, University of Richmond Athletic Director Jim Miller informed the members of the University of Richmond Track and Field program that the University would be cutting the men’s indoor and outdoor Track and Field teams. These cuts were made in order that the University could add a Men’s Lacrosse team. The Richmond Cross Country/Track program has been the epitome of what the NCAA promotes as Student-Athletes. We have succeeded both academically and athletically. The following are just some of the accomplishments by the Richmond Cross Country/Track and Field program over the past few years.

Spring 2011- Highest Team GPA all DI Outdoor Track and Field Teams

10 consecutive years on USTFCCCA All Academic Team for Cross Country, Indoor Track and Outdoor Track

2010- Qualified for NCAA XC Championships

2010-Top 25 finish in the NCAA

2010- Atlantic10 Cross Country Champions

Please sign this petition and vocalize your concern to the University community at large, to raise awareness and hopefully reverse this decision. Thank you for your support.

They are aiming to get 10,000 signatures, and currently they are only about 500 signatures away from that goal. I have signed, and I hope you will to.

To sign the petition, click here.

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About Peter Larson

This post was authored by Peter Larson. Pete is a recovering academic who currently works as an exercise physiologist, running coach, and writer. He's also a father of three and a fanatical runner with a bit of a shoe obsession. In addition to writing and editing this site, he is co-author of the book Tread Lightly, and writes a personal blog called The Blogologist. Follow Pete on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and via email.

Comments

  1. My assistant cross country coach’s alma mater is U of Richmond and she is also an alumni of our high school. we all signed the petition. i believe something like this happened at UMD last year. It really is a shame that they cut these programs because the best student-athletes are coming from track and field.

  2. Yea I live in Maryland and everyone was soo upset when University of Maryland College Park cut like 9 sports or something ridiculous, including track and xc ofcourse. My guess is that it has to do with the huge anounts of aerobic exercise, at my high school our xc team has the highest gpa out of any school team and probably always has. My question is why cut three globally (and nationally) popular sports for one cult sport that exists on the east coast?

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