Darton State turns to club sports amid budget woes - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Darton State turns to club sports amid budget woes

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Administrators at Darton State College say they will transition wrestling, cross country, and swimming from intercollegiate sports to club sports.

According to a release, school officials said the change was due to "budgeting constraints."

"These decisions are both difficult and impacting. However, they are critical for the department's overall sustainability," says Darton St. athletic director Mike Kiefer. "It is imperative that we make budgetary decisions that contribute to the long term success of the department and the institution."

The moves are expected to save the athletic department $200,000 a year.

Kiefer says these three teams were chosen for similar reasons.

"Some of those factors include the limited number of competitive opportunities against similar NJCAA colleges in our region, the amount of travel required for district and national championships, as well as the feasibility for seamless transition to club sport status."

Kiefer notes the wrestling program started as a successful club team, while Darton State already fields a club team in track.

The change will begin with the 2015-2016 school year.

Kiefer believes these changes will help alleviate some of the financial pressure the athletic department has been under lately.

"I fully anticipate that these measures will allow the department to operate in a sustainable manner into the future," he says.

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