Men's Golf

Volleyball , Swimming, Hockey and any remaining sports
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J.J.
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Men's Golf

Post by J.J. » Sun Jan 28, 2018 10:33 pm

Sad news regarding the Men's Golf team. A very successful program at Central.

Division I
2005 – 27th West Regional (Stanford Golf Course, Stanford, Calif.)
2003 – 26th West Regional (Washington National Golf Club, Auburn, Wash.)
2002 – 27th West Regional (New Mexico Championship Golf Course, Albuquerque, N.M.)

Division II
1986 - 10th
1985 - 3rd
1984 - 4th / Individual Champion - Greg Cate
1983 - 6th
1982 - 9th
1981 - 11th
1980 - 18th
1979 - 13th
1977 - 12th
1976 - 11th
1975 - 12th
1972 - 9th
1971 - 15th
1970 - 17th

J.J.
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 3369
Joined: Tue Sep 12, 2006 10:52 am
Location: Washington, DC

Re: Men's Golf

Post by J.J. » Fri Mar 16, 2018 9:29 pm

http://golfweek.com/2018/02/18/central- ... s-a-shock/
Central Connecticut’s plan to eliminate golf teams came as a shock
By: Brentley Romine | February 18, 2018 6:02 pm

Thirty-four years ago, Central Connecticut State’s Greg Cate won the individual title at the 1984 NCAA Division II Golf Championship. Cate’s victory remains the only NCAA title in school history, team or individual.

Yet the trophy is nowhere to be found among the various awards on display inside Harrison J. Kaiser Hall, which houses the Blue Devils’ athletics department.

Soon the golf programs will be nothing but a memory, too.

The New Britain, Conn., university announced last month that it would eliminate the men’s and women’s golf programs at season’s end while also phasing in the elimination of 35½ athletic scholarships among its remaining 16 Division I sports teams, all in the effort to save money at the state-funded school amid a $4.5 million budget cut.

“It was not an easy decision by any means, and I’m sure I speak for the rest of the Central family when I say that we regret that we will be eliminating two sports teams,” Central Connecticut’s president, Zulma Toro, said in a statement. “I sympathize with the student athletes and the coaches of those teams who will no longer be able to pursue their competitive sports aspirations at CCSU. I appreciate their gracious acceptance, and I thank the students and their coaches for their cooperation.”

Not that the coaches and players had a choice. Toro created a 13-person task force last May to study the sustainability of the school’s athletic program. After a seven-month investigation, the task force came up with a plan, which included eliminating the golf teams.

‘The kids were taken off guard’
It wasn’t until a decision was made that men’s coach Kyle Gallo and women’s coach Jackie Beck were informed of the fate of their teams by Toro and interim athletic director Christopher Galligan on Jan. 22. Later that day the two teams were given the news separately, without their coaches in the room.

“The kids were taken off guard,” Gallo said. “They had no idea this was coming.”

The Blue Devil men, who have a roster of nine players including three seniors, are ranked No. 229 in the Golfweek/Sagarin rankings and are the favorites to win the Northeast Conference this year. The women are ranked No. 249 and have two seniors and four freshmen on their six-player roster.

Neither program plans to have a player transfer before the end of the season.

“I anticipate that we win conference,” Gallo said of his men’s team. “I don’t think anything can bring these kids more together than this. … They want to go out with a bang.”

Net loss of $354,235 last year
The cuts are expected to save the university about $2 million. According to the Central Recorder, the school’s newspaper, the golf teams suffered a net loss of $354,235 last year. In a letter Gallo wrote to alumni, he said the total operating cost of the men’s golf team is $175,000, just more than 1 percent of the athletic department’s $9,435,663 budget.

“If you consider the cost per student of all teams, golf is the highest,” Toro, who has a listed annual salary of $289,500, told the Central Recorder. “The other thing, it’s a team that does not have spectators. It’s a team that doesn’t really help us build community; it doesn’t help us with enrollment. (The women’s team) has six students. It’s a sport that doesn’t help us in the grand scheme of things in fundraising.”

But it is a sport that brought the school it’s only national title, along with other accolades.

“It’s the most storied program in the history of the university,” Gallo said.

Forty-one years ago, Lowell Lukas, an athletic trainer and equipment manager at the school, was offered a volunteer head-coaching position. Two years later he signed a recruiting class that included three future All-Americans.

When Central Connecticut moved to Division I in 1986, the Blue Devils had become a regular at the Division II Finals, finishing as high as third as a team, and Lukas was a two-time national coach of the year. Lukas’ teams won 15 New England Intercollegiate Championship titles and one Northeast Conference title, in 1998, the first of four the program has won. (The Blue Devils also were runner-up three times since joining the conference in 1998.)

One-time NCAA national champion
Two of Lukas’ players went on to play on the PGA Tour, while 32 of them went on to be members of the PGA of America. Gallo, a former Blue Devils player, played on the Web.com Tour.

“They lost sight of what the program meant to the institution and what role it played,” Gallo said. “We’re a small school in the central part of Connecticut and we actually had an NCAA national champion be crowned. No other program in the history of this school can claim that.”

When reached by phone, Lukas said, “As you could imagine I have some pretty strong feelings.”

“The task force did not do their due diligence,” said Lukas, who plans to meet with Toro in a couple of weeks when the president is in Naples, Fla., for a fundraising event. “… They were kind of working in a vacuum. They just didn’t have the facts that they needed.”

This isn’t the first situation of its kind in Division I golf in recent years. Tulsa men’s golf was cut in 2016, and Furman’s men’s program was initially supposed to fold in 2014 before donors, led by former PGA Tour player Brad Faxon, helped save the team.

Gallo said the only scenario in which the programs could have been saved is if they were fully endowed for at least five years, which is unlikely.

‘The decision is final’
“I think the decision is final,” Gallo said. “I don’t think there’s any going back on it from the institution’s perspective, and I don’t think there’s any way we can raise enough money to actually save it.”

Lukas remembers before he took over the golf program, the team was made up mostly of guys who just wanted a free meal. He recalls having to grab athletes from other sports, including the swimming and football teams, to play the first year. The memories that followed were even sweeter, as Lukas put Central Connecticut men’s golf on the map.

“No matter what they do, we’ll always have the memories,” Lukas said. “That might be all we’re left with.”

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