WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Members of a committee who studied the future of UNCW athletics say they were disappointed at the absence of the men's basketball program during a student-athlete participation session, according to university officials.
The absence was noted in an 18 page report released Wednesday that ultimately concluded with a recommendation to cut five sports, but not touch men's basketball. No reason was given for the no-show in the report.
Buzz Peterson, the head coach of the Men's Basketball team, refused to explain why his players were not part of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee meeting with the Intercollegiate Athletic Review Committee earlier this year.
The Women's Basketball team was participating in the CAA tournament at the time and unable to attend. The university's 17 other teams were represented by two members each.
Women's swimming and diving was represented by a member of the men's program due to personal conflicts. The thought was the athletes that make up the entire coed program share the same schedule, coaches and ideals.
Sports Information Director Joe Browning says the Men's Basketball program is not commenting on the recommendations to cut men's track, cross country, swimming and diving, and softball.
In the 2012-2013 fiscal year, the Men's Basketball team operated with a $1.1 million deficit, the largest of any athletics program on campus. The program has the school's highest athletics budget at $1.6 million. The team's record last season was 10-20.
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