UConn Golf Raises Money to Keep Program Alive Amid Budget Cuts

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UConn Athletics might need to make some big changes to its department soon.

Chief Financial Officer Scott Jordan told the Board of Trustees during their May meeting that athletics is looking at ways to cut up to 25 percent of its institutional subsidy, which was more than $40 million last year, per the school’s 2019 fiscal report to the NCAA. That means the department needs to trim $10 million and that could mean cutting some programs.

While the school has not said which programs are in jeopardy, if any, some teams are taking a proactive approach. In just over a week, alumni from the Men’s Golf team have raised more than $200,000 for next season and more than another $700,000 pledged for the next five years.

John Bierkan, who played on the team from 1997 to 2000, said the university has approved their fundraising efforts.

“We want to make sure that the university knows that there are a lot of people that support a lot of the programs,” said Bierkan. “We understand the climate that we're in right now and so we just want to do things in a positive, productive and supportive manner.

The team has nearly 80 years of history in Storrs and alumni want to show UConn that there’s a lot of support for the program.

“Really all we can do is just reach out and hopefully help fundraise and raise money and show the university and the athletic department that there's a lot of people that are behind this,” said Zach Zaback, a 2016 UConn graduate who recently qualified for the Korn Ferry Tour. “Hopefully that translates into many more years of UConn golf.”

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