February 1, 2006

Slippery Slope

Earlier this week, Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania announced it was going to eliminate 8 sports before next year. Among these 8, of course, is wrestling, as wrestling is always on the top of any school's list when it comes to dropping sports. Currently, SRU has a single paid coach, 1.5 scholarships, and a $20,000 budget. This is not some big savings here, which is why seven other programs had to get the axe. The cuts will leave Slippery Rock, a state school with over 6,000 undergrads in a wrestling (and other high school sports) crazy area with only 6 men's sports (football, basketball, track, cross country, baseball, and soccer) and 8 women's sports.

It is my contention that no college in Pennsylvania should be without a wrestling team, given the incredible popularity of the sport in that state. Big high school dual meets get the front page of the sports section, the state tournament sells out the Hershey Park Arena every year, and countless NCAA All-Americans come from the state. I truly hope the alumni and supporters of Slippery Rock wrestling are able to rally enough support to save the school's team. It has happened before at other schools, and I believe it can happen again.

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