GEORGETOWN, Kentucky – Citing financial uncertainty, Georgetown College is making major budget cuts, eliminating jobs and five sports teams in the process.
Student athletes who plan to compete for teams at Georgetown College this school year will not have a chance to play due to layoffs, according to the college.
Athletes are now raising questions and making remarkable efforts to save their golf season.
what you should Know
- Georgetown College is cutting 5 sports amid financial uncertainty
- The programs to be cut are university golf for men and women, university programs for juniors, men’s and women’s football and archery.
- Scholarships will be awarded after this year to those student-athletes who decide to complete their degree at Georgetown College
- Based on the lists published on each team’s website, the layoffs affect more than 75 athletes.
Jake Damron, 21, a member of the men’s golf team at Georgetown College, has just learned – along with dozens of other athletes – that his college career has been cut short again.
First, the COVID-19 pandemic forced athletes to abandon their seasons. Georgetown College is now cutting a total of five of its athletic teams.
“To say I had the full experience is definitely an understatement, and now, after that, it’s really going to overshadow the way I look back on my athletic career in college,” Damron said.
Athletic Director Brian Evans informed student athletes and coaches about the affected sports programs by calling for an increase on June 2, 2022.
The programs that are being cut are university golf for men and women, university programs for juniors, men’s and women’s football and archery.
“It’s really hard for us to understand why this decision was made at our expense,” Damron said.
According to a statement posted by the school on social media, the cuts are part of a broader restructuring of the school’s budget. Officials cited rising costs and the need to close the “gap between estimated costs and estimated revenues”.
The school’s full statement from Vice President of Athletics Brian Evans reads:
I am very sorry for the pain caused by these cuts; I want to assure everyone that all the cuts that were part of the budget recently approved by the trustees have now been communicated to those affected, both inside and outside the athletics program.
I also regret that we have done an inadequate job of communicating these actions to the college community. We had already scheduled discussion meetings for faculty and staff on Monday to discuss all budget decisions, but we did not have a good plan to communicate with students who were not directly affected by the cuts. I have not been able to foresee the level of anxiety and confusion that will result from the redundancies of sports teams, and I take full responsibility for this failure.
I want you to feel free to express your concern directly to me and I will do my best to respond to any message. However, please don’t be angry if it takes me somewhere early next week to respond to everyone.
I promise to continue to do everything I can to serve the college well. I won’t always do well, but I promise to keep trying.
“One college has to stay alive, but the answers we received were, to be honest, what infuriated us. They were not direct, they were not logical [with us]”Damron explains.
Scholarships will be awarded after this year to those student-athletes who decide to complete their degree at Georgetown College.
Based on the lists published on each team’s website, the layoffs affect more than 75 athletes.
“It’s definitely frustrating for athletes who don’t have the opportunity to show what they have and all the hard work pays off,” Damron added.
Defenders of the men’s golf team and others affected by the cuts have already collected more than 1,000 signatures on a change.org petition demanding reinstatement.
“It’s not just a battle for me to play golf next year. It’s a struggle for the school to start making decisions based on the student’s experience and to evaluate the student’s opinion, “Damron added.
Ultimately, the college’s latest decision serves as a reminder to future players to value every moment as an athlete, according to Damron
“Appreciate every swing, every down, every bat, whatever sport you play,” he said. “Do your best, because you don’t know when they will take it away from you.”
The budget for men’s and women’s golf combined is only $ 60,000, according to an assistant coach.
Damron is due to graduate next spring and plans to go to law school.