Today the Nevada Athletic Department released the figures on the amount they will see their state approved funds reduced.
Interim UNR president Marc Johnson told the RGJ on Tuesday that he expects a $1 million cut in state funds to the Wolf Pack over the next two years.
"What we’re proposing is a half-a-million dollar cut in annual base funds in each of the next two years," said Johnson, adding that a final assessment of the cuts won’t be known until after the Nevada Board of Regents meet Thursday-Friday at UNR. "It could have been a lot more severe if we had not received a more moderate cut to the overall budget. It’s still a significant amount, but not as severe as had been projected in the worst-case scenario."
The worst-case scenario, initially proposed two months ago, included a $2.305 million cut to the department over the next two years. But the final budget passed by the Nevada Legislature two weeks ago limited UNR’s overall cut to $21 million, which reduced the hit to the Wolf Pack.
What this means is that the department should be able to weather the storm while waiting to see the increases that the move to the MWC will bring them. This follows from the news earlier this month when Nevada lawmakers agreed upon a state budget that included lessened penalties to the state's education budget than were initially proposed. This will allow the department to avoid cutting an additional sport (Nevada's ski program has already been eliminated) and cutting too many scholarships which would put their Division 1 status in potential jeopardy.
I will see if I can find what the figure is for UNLV's athletic department and will update here if I find anything. In that same article Chris Murray also mentions that Fresno and Hawaii's athletic departments are going though some similar budget concerns as well.
Fresno State athletic director Thomas Boeh told the Fresno Bee last week that the Bulldogs will slash $300,000 in athletic scholarships over the next three to four years to offset cuts in state funding.
Hawaii athletics, according to an independent auditor, has incurred $10 million in debt the over the past decade.
That is a fairly shocking figure from Hawaii's department. Travel for all their sports programs must be tough to maintain. Both schools are also looking forward to the increase in money the move to the MWC will provide.