Maryland's Loh creates committee to examine athletic department's finances

July 20, 2011

Over the past few years Maryland's athletic department has spent more than it has gained, forcing the athletic department to dip into its reserves, according to a university statement.

In a news release Tuesday, President Wallace D. Loh wrote, "for the past several years, including the most recent fiscal year that ended on June 30, 2011, [The Department of Intercollegiate Athletics'] expenditures have exceeded revenues." In order to offset Maryland's budgetary woes, Loh announced the creation of the President's Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics, which will examine the athletic department's finances and provide suggestions for improvement.

"Expenses are exceeding revenues and we're drawing on our reserves in order to be balanced," said Dr. Linda M. Clement, Commission Co-chair and Vice President for Student Affairs. "We need to take a look at the whole situation as we proceed forward."

Clement said the Commission, comprised of 15 representatives from across the university, has not convened yet and is looking to schedule its first meeting for early August. When the Commission does gather, it will be charged with several initiatives: first it will review the finances and operations of the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics (ICA) and then it will make recommendations on ways to increase revenue and decrease costs.

The Committee will submit its recommendations to Loh by Nov. 15, and from there Loh will review the proposal and pass it along to Athletic Director Kevin Anderson and the University Athletic Council (UAC). On Dec. 15 the UAC will issue its response to the report, and two weeks later Loh will announce his final decision.

Recently a similar study was conducted by the University of California, which led to the elimination of five varsity teams. Clement said Maryland's Commission will study the decision made by the University of California, although that does not necessarily mean similar steps will be taken.

"At first we're going to try to get a solid understanding of the situation, understand it and its history," Clement said. "We won't jump to solutions until we fully understand the situation."

Robbie Levin

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