In light of the University of Iowa cutting its men’s and women’s swimming & diving programs on August 21, the NCAA has reportedly begun searching for a new host of the 2021 Men’s NCAA Division I Swimming & Diving Championships.
According to College Swimming & Diving Coaches Association (CSCAA) Executive Director Greg Earhart, the NCAA has started its “pursuit of a new, more deserving site for this event.”
“The 2021 Men’s Division I Swimming & Diving Championships were set to generate nearly $1.5m in economic impact for Iowa City and thousands more in earned positive media for the university,” Earhart said in a statement.
While we feel for the Iowa City and @IowaSwimmingInc community, we fully support the @NCAA‘s search for a new host of the 2021 NCAA Division I Swimming & Diving Championships. #saveiowasports #SaveHawkeyeSports @presscitizen pic.twitter.com/DQgP1WEfee
— CSCAA (@CSCAA) September 3, 2020
Iowa City was announced as the host of the event, which is scheduled for March 24-27, 2021, back in 2017. The city last hosted the Men’s Division I NCAA Swimming & Diving Championship in 2015.
As acknowledged by Earhart, moving the NCAA Championships from the city leaves a huge financial impact, especially considering the money the school invested into its new facility. The $69 million Campus Recreation and Wellness Center only opened in 2010, and the school put $5-6 million into pool repairs just last summer.
The pool seats 1,200 spectators.
Niether the University of Iowa nor the NCAA has yet issued a press release on the move.
When Iowa announced it was cutting its swimming & diving teams in August, it marked the sixth Division I school to cut at least one of its S&D programs during the offseason and the first that competes in one of the Power-5 conferences (Big Ten).
The Big Ten Conference had announced earlier in August that it would be postponing the fall football season, leaving them to face approximately $15 million in athletics budget reductions due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Hawkeyes finished 9th among 13 women’s programs and 6th among 10 men’s programs at the 2020 Big Ten Championships. They had qualified two women and two men for the NCAA Championships, which were cancelled amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Prior to being canceled, the 2020 Men’s NCAA Division I Swimming & Diving Championships were scheduled to take place at the IU Natatorium in Indianapolis, while Georgia Tech in Atlanta is currently slated to host in 2022.