The University of Cincinnati will reinstate and increase the funding to its Olympic sports scholarship programs. Starting this fall, the university says it will implement a plan to ultimately offer the full NCAA complement of grant-in-aid scholarships in each of its 19 sports programs.
The athletic department reduced scholarship funding for a number of sports in 2009 because of budget constraints. That included eliminating scholarships for men's cross country, men's track and field and men's swimming and diving. Tuesday's announcement reverses that decision.
Athletic Director Whit Babcock calls this significant for UC's future.
"To consistently win championships and compete at the level we aspire, we must provide the resources necessary for our coaches to recruit, retain, and graduate our student-athletes who proudly represent the Bearcats," he said. "We've been 'fully funded' in football, men's basketball, women's basketball, and some other sports for a number of years, but today is a big step in the right direction to afford all of our sports and student-athletes that same opportunity."
UC says it's taking a multi-pronged approach to fund the effort, including a new fundraising initiative.
Head football coach Tommy Tuberville has already said he's donating $300,000 during the next five years for UC's Olympic sports programs.
@m_hargrove I only wish we could have done so sooner.
— Santa J. Ono (@PrezOno) March 19, 2013