As many of you know, the athletics budget will be presented as a future action item at the upcoming Board of Regents meeting on November 12 and 13. As a future action item, it will not be put to vote but will be discussed. Linked below is the memo and related materials. In summary, this discussion will be predicated on the validity of the following assumptions:
The following assumptions regarding the WSU Regents, President and leadership commitment to intercollegiate athletics support the financial options recommended below. Changes to these assumptions will change the recommended financial options.
- WSU’s affiliation with a top-level intercollegiate athletics conference and program is a key and strategic means of increasing institutional visibility on a national scale, to the benefit of all WSU students, faculty, staff and communities.
- WSU intercollegiate athletics is an essential element of the residential campus experience for the Pullman Campus, and understands that university support of intercollegiate athletics is an investment in the student experience that is essential to attracting and retaining students.
- The operation of intercollegiate athletics without membership in the Pac-12 is financially unfeasible.
We are gathering feedback in advance of this meeting. Thus far faculty have asked:
- Is there evidence to support these assumptions?
- Is the operation of intercollegiate athletics without membership in the Pac-12 financially unfeasible?
- Have other schools similar to WSU gone this route? If so, what were the outcomes?
- Would being the first school to depart the Pac-12 and moving to another conference demonstrate our commitment to academic excellence and our Land Grant mission? Would this offer a highly visible pathway to gain prestige and interest in WSU that is at least equivalent to the assumed advantages of remaining engaged as a Pac-12 member?
Relevant links are below. Please use the comment feature to add to this discussion.
-WSU Senate Executive Committee