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Deseret News

BYU-Hawaii to phase out athletics over 3 years

By Kyle Spencer | Posted - Mar 26th, 2014 @ 11:14am


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LAIE, Hawaii — BYU-Hawaii will phase out its athletics program over the course of the next three years, according to a source close to the program.

Administrators and coaches met Monday in a closed-door meeting to discuss the possibility, as reported by Hawaii News Now. A source involved in the meeting, who asked not to be identified because he wasn't authorized to speak on the university's behalf, revealed to KSL that a decision was reached to begin a three-year phaseout.

The phaseout was first reported on the Facebook page of the Laie Voice March 14.

Reasoning behind the decision is not yet clear. The source refuted the possibility that it was made for financial purposes, citing the administration's reluctance to seek out willing boosters.

BYU-Hawaii Director of Communications Michael Johanson said that discussions are ongoing, and that the university does everything it can to provide the “best experience” for its students.

All 11 of the Seasiders’ current intercollegiate athletic teams compete in the Pacific West Conference at the NCAA Div. II level. Previously, BYU-Hawaii was a member of NAIA. The school has won 24 national titles in men's and women's tennis, men's and women's volleyball and rugby since its inception.

Ricks College underwent a similar transformation when it became BYU-Idaho in summer 2000, beginning a two-year phaseout of its athletic department that ended in 2002.

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