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Concordia University Ann Arbor discontinuing all athletic programs after 2024-25 year

Concordia University Ann Arbor cutting athletic program after 2024-25 school year
Concordia University Ann Arbor cutting athletic program after 2024-25 school year 02:21

(CBS DETROIT) - Concordia University announced that all athletic programs at its Ann Arbor campus will be discontinued following the 2024-25 school year. 

This comes after the Lutheran university announced in March that it would remain open despite major financial challenges. The school said it was losing money, even though enrollment was up. 

Following uncertainty about the school's fate and discussions about the school closing, Concordia announced the school would stay open through the 2025 year. However, after hearing about the financial challenges, students feared that athletics would be affected. 

Concordia University remains open despite financial challenges ahead 01:56

Now, the university announced all sports will be discontinued after the upcoming school year. 

"Initially, our leadership team hoped to preserve as many athletic programs as possible beyond the 2024-25 academic year," Concordia President Erik Ankerberg said in a news release. "However, upon further analysis of our financial model, it became evident that continuing these programs in Ann Arbor beyond the upcoming year is not feasible."

Ankerberg said this does not reflect the coaches and athletic staff, and university officials met with the athletic director to discuss the decision. 

"Our athletic programs, particularly under the direction of Lonnie Pries, have played an integral part in the transformation of thousands of men and women," said Ankerberg. "Being a Concordia Cardinal was not just about notching wins in the athletic arena. It was about helping to develop men and women in mind, body, and spirit for service to Christ in the Church and world; It was about building champions of character. While athletics at CUAA are ending, the Cardinal legacy endures."  

A member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and the Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference, Concordia sponsors 28 varsity sports. 

More information about the athletic programs will be provided after an Academic Council meeting on June 19. The university will also post updates online

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