Central Michigan news: University suspends track and field amid pandemic

(Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images) /

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Central Michigan University has announced that it will be discontinuing its men’s track and field program.

In a time without sports and financial instability, another school is forced into a time where they need to plan strategically. The latest school that has announced/enacted a new strategic plan is Central Michigan University.

The school has announced that it will be discontinuing its men’s track and field program immediately. This cut affects both men’s indoor and outdoor track programs and is considered to be part of the University’s latest strategic planning initiative.

This cut will be affecting thirty-six student-athletes who still maintain their scholarships during their academic time at Central Michigan. Student-athletes affected by this are permitted to transfer to another institution if they would prefer to do so without any penalties.

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Besides student-athletes, two full-time assistant coaches have lost their positions with Central Michigan following the cut.

By making this cut down to sixteen sports, the school is now at the threshold to keep them in the Division I rankings for school.

Just last season, the Central Michigan Chippewas would advance to the Mid-American Conference (MAC) Championship, where they took on the Miami University RedHawks.

Ultimately losing the game, but without maintaining sixteen sports, they would not be considered Division I in their football program.

Sadly, Central Michigan is the first school within the state of Michigan to make cuts due to the outbreak of COVID-19.

Central Michigan Athletic Director, Michael Alford, spoke about the decision claiming it was a very heavy-hearted decision that was tough to make. He talked about how he hopes the student-athletes will continue their academic careers at Central Michigan but understands any transfers.

During these uncertain times, it seems that they are not going to be the only school impacted, another team in the MAC, Bowling Green State University, has been forced to cut their men’s baseball program due to effects from the COVID-19 pandemic.

It is awful for the student-athletes who are now tasked with the decision of staying at Central Michigan to continue their academic career or transfer to a school where they may continue to compete at the Division 1 level.

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One thing is sure, Central Michigan University will not be competing in men’s track and field this coming fall because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the consequences schools are facing.