Division I Lindenwood University To Cut Swimming & Diving Programs, Eight Others

Lindenwood University, which only recently reclassified into NCAA Division I, announced mass cuts to its athletics programs on Friday, including both men’s and women’s swimming and diving.

The school, located in St. Charles, Mo., will eliminate a total of 10 athletic programs effective at the conclusion of the 2023-24 season, other than women’s field hockey, which is effective today (Dec. 1) with their season having completed.

In announcing the cuts, the university said the reasoning behind the move was to ensure sustainability down the line, indicating the decision was more than likely due to financial reasons.

Full List of Programs Cut:

  • NCAA Men’s Lacrosse, effective at conclusion of Spring 2024 season
  • NCAA Men’s Swimming and Diving, effective at conclusion of Spring 2024 season
  • NCAA Men’s Tennis, effective at conclusion of Spring 2024 season
  • NCAA Men’s Indoor Track & Field, effective at conclusion of Spring 2024 season
  • NCAA Men’s Outdoor Track & Field, effective at conclusion of Spring 2024 season
  • NCAA Men’s Wrestling, effective at conclusion of Spring 2024 season
  • NCAA Women’s Field Hockey, effective December 1, 2023
  • NCAA Women’s Gymnastics, effective at conclusion of Spring 2024 season
  • NCAA Women’s Swimming and Diving, effective at conclusion of Spring 2024 season
  • SLS Men’s and Women’s Cycling, effective at conclusion of Spring 2024 season

Lindenwood officially became an NCAA Division I member in July 2022, joining the Ohio Valley Conference, which doesn’t sponsor swimming & diving.

Their swim & dive programs competed in the Summit League Championships last season and are scheduled to do so once again in late February.

The Lions’ men’s team were the runners-up at the 2023 Summit League Championships, while the women placed third.

Prior to reclassifying to D1, Lindenwood was a force in Division II, with the women’s team recently earning their highest-ever finish, fourth, at the 2021 NCAA Championships. They also won the Great Lakes Valley Conference (GLVC) for the first time that season.

In 2022, the women’s team placed third at the GLVC Championships and seventh at NCAAs, while the men’s team finished fifth at nationals and seventh at the conference meet.

The reclassification into Division I allowed for increased scholarship opportunities for the school’s athletic teams, which presumably played a part in the program cuts.

Lindenwood previously had one of the largest offerings in the country with 29 NCAA-sponsored sports, though that number now dips down to 20 (the cycling program that was cut is not an official NCAA sport).

Jason Coomer, Lindenwood’s Intercollegiate Athletics Vice President, spoke on the decision to cut 10 teams on Friday.

“Today, and for the near future, it will be challenging as the decision to better align our athletics department with our peers also results in many of our student-athletes learning that they will no longer be able to compete in the sport they love while at Lindenwood.

“As an Athletics Director, this is not a decision you ever want to have to make. Unfortunately, it is critical for the long-term sustainability of the department. I understand there will be considerable hurt felt by the 10 teams impacted as well as by our staff and coaches.”

“While I cannot erase that hurt, I will continue to do everything possible to give our impacted teams and coaches the best experience possible for the remainder of their respective seasons. Our staff will also be committed to assisting impacted student-athletes who are looking at the options they have available, including remaining at Lindenwood on their scholarships, or entering the transfer portal to find a new opportunity to continue their academic and athletic careers.”

Previously in the NAIA, Lindenwood moved to Division II beginning in the 2013-14 season.

The swim & dive teams most recently competed at the Mizzou Invitational two weeks ago.

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mstat
7 days ago

Word around the team is that they are all transferring to NKU and will be apart of the program’s initial team next year. Seems like they’ve landed on their feet and will make a big splash in the Horizon league.

Admin
Reply to  mstat
7 days ago

Interesting. Please have them reach out if they’d like to make a ‘splash’.

Paul Eaton
3 months ago

Stop the madness!

Swim Mom
3 months ago

Heartbreaking for their student athletes.

whoisthis
3 months ago

uindy really made em cut the swim team (this is a joke ik why they did)

D2 Swammer
3 months ago

They won’t survive in D1 long term. D2 was their sweet spot. This is really sad for athletes in all of these sports.

Tomek
3 months ago

This is just the beginning…

Last edited 3 months ago by Tomek
Swimmmer
3 months ago

All part of the plan…

James Beam
3 months ago

Bizarre. How could they not know they were not going to be financially solid athletically when they made the move to D1? Must have been educated by U of Arizona’s CFO….

urahrah
Reply to  James Beam
3 months ago

Lindenwood’s had financial issues for awhile. They closed/cut their satellite campus in Belleville the same year this campus went D1.

SwimFan49
Reply to  James Beam
3 months ago

Or was it just all part of the plan?!

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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