The Cal State University-Northridge athletics department announced in a press release on its website yesterday that it would be discontinuing both its men’s and women’s swim programs effective starting with the 2010-2011 season.
CSU-Northridge has been hit by budget cuts campus wide that have reflected the larger economic difficulties facing the state of California. Northridge currently supports 20 varsity sports, which is at the upper end of the Big West Conference, and will still be in the upper half without their swimming programs.
This news is especially disappointing after two other California Universities,Cal State-Bakersfield and Pepperdine, which recently received a huge anonymous donation that saved their swimming program. Northridge is the second D-1 swimming program that announced it would discontinue at least one of its swimming programs, as Duquesne announced earlier this year that they would be cutting their men’s program.
I don’t have any firm statistics on this, but California is probably home to more competitive swimmers than any other state in the coutnry, and Northridge cutting their program is a blow to lots of California kids everywhere.