Towson State restores its swimming programs


Towson State has restored its men's and women's swimming programs, which had been cut Aug. 11 as a cost-saving measure.

Athletic director Bill Hunter announced the reversal yesterday but did not say whether the swimming teams would survive past the 1992-93 school year. The men's and women's indoor track and field teams, also cut Aug. 11, were not given a reprieve.

"The university has reconsidered its suspension [of swimming] primarily because the students who would want to compete intercollegiately had no recourse for this year," Hunter said in a statement. "Suspending the programs at this late date had left the student-athletes with no opportunity to transfer elsewhere."

There has been no decision on the future of the swimming programs, athletic department spokesman Dan O'Connell said last night. Ray Riordon, who has coached the Towson swimming program since its inception 25 years ago, could not be reached for comment.

Since the students involved in indoor track are also members of the cross country or outdoor track teams, they will not be displaced by the cuts. All athletic scholarships are renewed on a yearly basis, and all of the affected athletes -- in swimming and indoor track -- were told that full-time scholarships would be honored for the upcoming school year.

On Aug. 11, Hunter said that university president Hoke Smith had directed the athletic department to trim $125,000 from its budget as part of university-wide cuts. Eliminating the men's and women's swimming program would save about $60,000, and cutting the men's and women's indoor track programs will save $3,395, Hunter said at the time.

O'Connell said yesterday that the school would not release figures on money saved, now that swimming had been given a reprieve.

"The athletic department has developed cost reductions in swimming and other alternative means of complying with budget cut requests," the release said yesterday.

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