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Column: Towson's baseball and men's soccer programs fighting for survival

The University of Maryland did it in July 2012 and now Towson University is following suit.

The Maryland athletic program dropped seven sports and now the athletic director at Towson, Mike Waddell, is recommending for baseball and men's soccer to be cut as part of the school's reorganization program.

In order to comply with Title IX, Towson will have to reinstate mens tennis and add roster spots to womens teams and mens lacrosse.

It's an unfortunate situation for all parties involved in the cuts and my advice to athletes who play sports other than football and basketball in college, is to be aware that this "reorganization" could happen to you wherever you decide to go for college.

I would expect more schools to join in the slash and burn of what are commonly called non-revenue producing sports. It's all about economics. No money coming in and that sport or sports will eventually go.

The Towson situation is apparently still only a proposal that has to be approved by the school's administration and will be looked into by a task force. (There's a hearing scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 1, at 6:30 p.m. at the school.) But the writing is on the wall.

I don't want anybody at the school to state that the priority is the kids involved and that the school really cares about them.

Tell that to Colin Dyer, Paul Beers, Chris Acker, Mike Draper, Lee Lawler or other current members of the baseball team at Towson.

Parents are trying to fight to keep the programs going by taking their case to the media and raising funds. I applaud their efforts but it may not be enough.

I talked to Colin Dyer, a freshman at Towson and a graduate of Howard High, to get his take.

"When we were told about the cuts, I thought it was a done deal. I felt betrayed. I like it here at Towson but now I have to find somewhere else to play baseball," he said.

Even if parents can raise enough funds like they did at Maryland to save the men's track program, those efforts come with strings attached. Once a school decides to drop a sport, it is ultimately doomed.

And if you ask me, that's a shame.

Stan Ber is a sports columnist for the Towson Times' sister publication, the Howard County Times.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
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