WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - A little less than three weeks has passed since UNCW Chancellor Gary Miller made the decision not to cut any athletic programs.
While the cuts didn't happen, the swimming and diving program has still taken a hit.
"We have lost three of our current male swimmers, two will be transferring to other schools and one incoming freshman has decided to not come and to go to another school," head coach Dave Allen said Tuesday morning.
Rising juniors Nick Lowe and CJ Fiala have both left the program to join the teams at North Carolina and Virginia Tech.
"It's a major loss because the two gentlemen we are losing are major contributors, they are major point getters at our conference championship and were involved in four relays that won the conference tournament so there's half of these four relays that are gone," Allen said. "We're mourning a little bit this week with the loss of them from our program but at the same time we know we have to move forward and get ourselves ready for this next season."
Allen also said that interest from high school seniors in his program has significantly fallen off because of the uncertainty about the future.
"The amount of questionnaires that we've received from rising seniors, we used to receive anywhere from five to seven a day, now we're seeing one. There's a lot of caution in terms of our program."
Allen indicated he's not getting any reassurance from the administration about the future of any of the five programs that were facing elimination.
Based on recommendations from the Intercollegiate Athletics Review Committee (IARC), softball, swimming and diving, as well as men's indoor track and field and cross country were all facing elimination until the Chancellor went against those recommendations opting to keep all of the programs.
"At this point in terms of the future we're hopeful that this will be more than a one year reprieve," Allen said. "We'd like to think this will allow our program to move forward and have some stability to it, but again nothing has really been said, to my knowledge, about the fact that it was going to be an indefinite type of situation."
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