CCU makes tough call in face of budget cuts, gender equity

Coastal Carolina’s decision to cut men’s track and field and cross country after next season may have come as a surprise to those who follow the Chants.

After all, almost every announcement over the past decade has been about growth – an upstart football program, a new arena and other facilities, and even a new women’s lacrosse program. And, truth be told, all of those play a small role in the decision.

But it’s really not shocking if you know the economics and politics behind the move. The 1-2 punch of gender equity and budget cuts are ultimately to blame for the heart-wrenching decision to knock out two men’s, non-revenue sports.

The downsizing can be traced back to 2003, when Coastal added football and 85 scholarships exclusively for male student-athletes. That tipped the gender-equity balance way out of whack, which is a big reason women’s lacrosse was added this school year.

But that was before the mandated $1 million in budget cuts, with $250,000 slated to come from athletics. Rest assured that a project like the new $35 million HTC Center or the current renovations of the baseball and softball complex wouldn’t have been approved in the current economic climate.

Coastal athletics director Hunter Yurachek faced the difficult decision to trim a significant portion from the budget of all 18 sports, but all that does is weaken Coastal’s athletic brand as a whole. Sacrificing two for the good of 16 was the lesser of two evils.

Unfortunately the price is being paid by a handful of male student-athletes who train just as hard, if not harder than, their counterparts in other sports. Their scholarships will be honored, as they should, and they will have the opportunity to transfer without penalty.

As bad luck would have it, the men’s track and field program was gaining national attention and coming off a strong showing at the Penn Relays. The timing of the decision wasn’t made any easier with the recent news that new women’s basketball coach Jaida Williams signed a five-year contract worth $675,000 (see “gender equity).

By pinning the blame on budget cuts and gender equity, that doesn’t necessarily say I disagree with them. Females should have the same opportunities to use publicly funded scholarships, and athletics should be fair game whenever a university faces budget reductions.

Was it fair to the athletes involved? Absolutely not. But was it the best move to keep Coastal athletics both competitive and in compliance? Absolutely.

Chants take doubleheader, reach Sun Belt title game

Chants take doubleheader, reach Sun Belt title gameThe Chanticleers scored nine runs over the first three innings [more]

Seahawks let state golf title slip from their grip

Seahawks let state golf title slip from their gripSports can be both heartwarming and heartbreaking. The full range [more]

Chants use walk-off home run to stay alive in Sun Belt

Chants use walk-off home run to stay alive in Sun BeltZach Biermann's third home run of the night with two [more]

Myrtle Beach's Doty heads to nation's top QB camp

Myrtle Beach's Doty heads to nation's top QB camp Luke Doty’s Myrtle Beach legacy already includes some gaudy numbers, [more]

CCU drops Sun Belt debut; faces elimination Thursday

CCU drops Sun Belt debut; faces elimination ThursdayCoastal Carolina baseball surrendered eight runs over the last three [more]

MB Track and Field Club makes big season debut

MB Track and Field Club makes big season debutEighteen members of the Myrtle Beach Track & Field Club [more]

Chants win season finale; host Sun Belt tournament

Chants win season finale; host Sun Belt tournamentA two hour and five minute-lightning delay nor two Appalachian [more]

Clemson hammers Coastal with early offensive barrage

Clemson hammers Coastal with early offensive barrageSimilar to the two teams' first meeting back on March [more]

Seahawks claim state title in tribute to late coach

Seahawks claim state title in tribute to late coach John Ed Cahill queued up an old voicemail from his [more]

MB golf team flying high, riding ties to state tourney

MB golf team flying high, riding ties to state tourneyThe Myrtle Beach High boys golf team is tying its [more]

Lynch-inspired Seahawks advance to 4A state final

Lynch-inspired Seahawks advance to 4A state finalLL Coach. The somewhat cryptic rallying cry (Long Live Coach) was [more]

Soccer: MB, Socastee fall in lower state semifinals

Soccer: MB, Socastee fall in lower state semifinalsMyrtle Beach’s season came down to about three minutes. In that [more]

South Aiken stops Lady Seahawks state title run

South Aiken stops Lady Seahawks state title runThe closest thing to a blemish South Aiken had on [more]

Green Wave sinks Sharks in Lower State opener

Green Wave sinks Sharks in Lower State openerIn any other game, St. James coach Robbie Centracchio may [more]

Soccer: Braves, Seahawks reach Lower State semis

Soccer: Braves, Seahawks reach Lower State semisThe Socastee High boys soccer team crushed Cane Bay 5-0 [more]

Seahawks go from funeral to Lower State title match

Seahawks go from funeral to Lower State title matchEven after his death earlier this week, longtime Myrtle Beach [more]

Illing steps down as Socastee football coach

Illing steps down as Socastee football coachDoug Illing struggled with the emotions. He even fought himself trying [more]

Sharks top Swamp Foxes, reach lower state tourney

Sharks top Swamp Foxes, reach lower state tourneyIt took a little longer than St. James fans may [more]

CF girls fall in first round for season-ending defeat

CF girls fall in first round for season-ending defeatHeading into the playoffs, Carolina Forest’s girls soccer team hoped [more]

Seahawks draw inspiration from fallen coach Lynch

Seahawks draw inspiration from fallen coach Lynch John Edward Cahill III occasionally glanced at a spot at [more]

MB girls stun Hilton Head to reach Lower State semis

MB girls stun Hilton Head to reach Lower State semisFor all of the dominant results, all the blowouts and [more]

Seahawks lose legendary tennis coach, mentor Lynch

Seahawks lose legendary tennis coach, mentor LynchCookie Goings was barely a teenager, an eighth grader running [more]

Local club hosts another solid Coast Spring Classic

Local club hosts another solid Coast Spring ClassicMore than 400 teams from six states completed in the [more]

Renfrow claims NFL dream as Raiders' fifth-round pick

Renfrow claims NFL dream as Raiders' fifth-round pickFormer Socastee High and Clemson standout Hunter Renfrow was selected [more]

Lady Panthers charge into playoffs as region champs

Lady Panthers charge into playoffs as region champsWhen Katie Kulick drove the ball past the West Florence [more]

Chants take doubleheader, reach Sun Belt title game

Chants take doubleheader, reach Sun Belt title gameThe Chanticleers scored nine runs over the first three innings [more]

Seahawks let state golf title slip from their grip

Seahawks let state golf title slip from their gripSports can be both heartwarming and heartbreaking. The full range [more]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© 2019 Grand Strand Sports Report · RSS
Myrtle Beach Web Design
Kayaking in Myrtle Beach