Hofstra University has decided to cancel its football program. President Stuart Rabinowitz said, "The cost of the football program, now and in the future, far exceeds the return possible from an FCS program, which does not generate significant national interest. Given that, along with the low level of interest, financial support and attendance among our students, our alumni and the community, the choice was painful, but clear."
Newsday (subscription required) reports, "The program, which has a net cost of roughly $4.5 million annually, had been in a tailspin for much of this decade, with its last NCAA appearance coming in 2001 under Joe Gardi. Dave Cohen took over in 2006 and produced one winning season, 7-4 in 2007. In Cohen's four seasons, the Pride were 18-27, including a 5-6 record in 2009." ESPN adds, "The Pride, which has competed in the NCAA's Football Championship Subdivision (formerly known as Division I-AA) since 1991, is the second member of the Colonial Athletic Association to drop its football program in the last 10 days. Northeastern University in Boston announced it was dropping its football program after 74 seasons on Nov. 23."
Athletic director Jack Hayes said, "My priority is to implement a plan that assists the student-athletes and coaching staff with their efforts to move forward. We recognize that some team members will choose to complete their degree at Hofstra, and we encourage them to do so. Others may choose to continue their playing careers at other institutions. Whatever their decision, we are here to assist them."
A reader, whose brother plays on the team and was devastated by the news, tells us: "The players were told this morning. They were given the option to keep their football scholarships if they decide to stay. There is a similar meeting with the lacrosse team this afternoon, apparently."