The Sun reports that Towson University Athletic Director Mike Waddell is recommending the elimination of the baseball and soccer programs ("Baseball, men's soccer target of cuts," Oct. 3). By cutting baseball and soccer, Mr. Waddell would save about $800,000. Clearly, the label "bean counter" should be placed on Mr. Waddell. The label allows Mr. Waddell to ignore logic, courage, tradition, integrity, and wisdom as factors in the decision.
I am proud to say that I played soccer for another athletic director at Towson by the name of Dr. Donald "Doc" Minnegan. Doc was a legend and a true giant of a man. He wore his "sports for all" philosophy an his chest and proclaimed its virtues throughout his life. They named a stadium after him and then renamed it to gain some donations. To me, it is still Minnegan Stadium and always will be.
In my day, soccer was "the" major sport at Towson State Teachers College because football was not a part of Baltimore County's sports programs. Lacrosse was not a Towson sport in my era. I ran for president of the Men's Athletic Association in my senior year at Towson with a promise to add lacrosse as a team sport at Towson. It was added because the students wanted it.
Recently, the University of Maryland went through a similar cost cutting of its sports programs. Baseball and soccer were not considered for elimination. Today, the 2012 University of Maryland soccer team is ranked top in the nation. The Sun article noted the elimination of the University of Baltimore's soccer program and the negative impact still felt today.
How do you justify cutting the baseball program? John Schuerholz played baseball (and soccer) for Towson. How do you justify cutting soccer? This is an injustice to the thousands of kids playing in the recreational programs in Maryland. In Baltimore, the Schuerholz name is a legend in soccer, although not baseball.
When I was a student at Towson, we were known as the Towson Knights, not the Towson Tigers. The first person to call himself a "Towson Tiger" was Ed Lorenz, a fellow teammate. Credit for creating the "Tiger" image can be traced back to a Doc Minnegan soccer player.
Mr. Waddell is misguided. He need not hide behind a "The Budget Made Me Do It" mentality. The students of Towson University deserve to keep their baseball and soccer programs.
William L. Reider, Ellicott City
The writer is a member of the Towson Class of 1958.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun