Central Michigan University announced that they will be discontinuing its men’s track and field programs, effective immediately, due to budget shortfalls because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The university says the decision to discontinue the track and field program directly affects 36 students and two full-time assistants.  Students who are attending CMU on track and field scholarships will receive their scholarships for the duration of their time at the university or they can transfer to another school without penalty or delay.

According to Michael Alford, Central Michigan University Athletic Director,

"We did not make this decision lightly, but we are facing a new financial reality due to enrollment challenges and now COVID-19."

"Hundreds of students have participated in this longstanding, successful program at Central Michigan, and we know this will impact them — and supporters of this program — greatly."

"My heart goes out to these student-athletes; I know this is incredibly difficult for them," Alford said. "We hope they continue their academic journeys at Central Michigan, but also wish them the best if they're able to continue athletic pursuits elsewhere."

The university says the other 16 athletic teams will remain intact, including men and women’s cross country, and women's track and field,  as well as, football, men's and women's basketball, baseball, softball, women's soccer, women's golf, field hockey, gymnastics, women's lacrosse, softball, volleyball, and wrestling.

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