South Carolina State could lose its men’s basketball programs and two non-revenue generating women’s sports under a budget plan presented by embattled school president Thomas Elzey.
The cost-saving proposal would also call for South Carolina State to possibly leave the MEAC in the hopes of easing the athletic department’s 465,000 budget shortfall it faces in 2015-16.
Elzey, who was placed on paid administrative leave this week as state lawmakers tackle the Orangeburg school’s financial crisis, released his proposal to the Orangeburg Times and Democrat. His plan was discussed by the Board of Trustees’ financial committee on Feb. 16, but has not been approved by the board.
Elzey’s proposal includes the elimination of men’s basketball, women’s softball and women’s soccer, and calls for a “consideration of change in conference affiliation.”
S.C. State has been a member of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference since 1970. Elzey’s plan does not state which conference S.C. State might consider joining.
South Carolina State men’s basketball has a record of 10-20 overall and 7-8 in MEAC play this season.
Elzey’s plan would add women’s golf and women’s bowling — a pair of sports that are less expensive to run, according to the newspaper.