Men’s Crew, Women’s Rowing Reinstated; 5 Others Remain Cut

Board of Trustees Discuss Fate of 7 Cut SportsAfter much deliberation, Temple University’s Board of Trustees reinstated both men’s crew and women’s rowing, while the status of the other five sports is unchanged.

At a Board meeting held in front of student-athletes and their coaches as well as others interested on February 24, President Neil Theobald called for the reinstatement of crew and rowing, as it was announced that the East Park Canoe House will be renovated due to donations from Gerry Lenfest and other city funds.

In regards to the five remaining sports, among them being: men’s baseball, men’s outdoor and indoor track and field, men’s gymnastics, and women’s softball, Theobald holds that they should be cut.

Theobald also stated that cutting men’s crew and women’s rowing hurt Temple University in regards to Title IX.

When the floor was opened for questions, the first hand up was Fred Turoff, Men’s Gymnastics Coach of 38 years, prompting the board as to why they would eliminate the “most successful program at Temple.” 

“The records never came into discussion at all,” said President Theobald. 

The possibility of converting the Men’s Gymnastics program into a club sport was discussed, with support from the crowd as well as from Board Member Lewis Katz.

“I would be more than willing to finance that occurrence,” said Katz.

Among the many criteria the cuts were based on, facilities were a big one. Coach Ryan Wheeler asked the Board why facilities were an issue for the baseball and softball teams, as the Phillies and Camden Riversharks offered possible venues for each.

Yet although the facilities were no longer an issue, reinstating the five remaining sports would not keep Temple University compliant with Title IX guidelines.

The women’s softball, men’s baseball, indoor and outdoor track and field, as well as gymnastics teams will be cut July 1st.

Athletic Director Kevin Clark stated that no one wanted to make the cuts, but at the end of the day, he had to think of what was best for Temple University.

President Theobald & Mayor Nutter Reach Agreement

Shortly after, President Theobald and Mayor Michael Nutter held a press conference at City Hall to discuss the total $5.5 million that will go towards renovating East Park Canoe House. $3 million was donated by the Lenfest Foundation, while the city committed $2.5 million more.

The renovations are supposed to take 12-18 months to complete, once design plans have been finalized.

Temple University will go from having 24 intercollegiate athletic teams to 19 creating what Theobald believes to be a more sustainable model for Temple Athletics.


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