Temple Athletic Cuts: Six People You Need to Know

The gymnastics training facility in Pearson Hall at Temple University.
The gymnastics training facility in Pearson Hall at Temple University.

On Dec. 6, 2013, Temple University’s Board of Trustees approved a recommendation from Athletic Director Kevin Clark to eliminate seven sports: crew, rowing, men’s gymnastics, baseball, softball and men’s indoor and outdoor track & field. Although the board later reversed the decision to cut crew and rowing, the rest will no longer exist at the varsity level as of July 1, 2014. Here are six people that have played big roles in the cuts.

1. Kevin Clark, a former administrator in Indiana University’s sports department, was named the permanent athletic director at Temple in November  2013 after serving as interim AD at the school for seven months. Since the day the cuts were announced, he has refused all interview requests, drawing the ire of the affected student-athletes and others.

2. Men’s gymnastics coach Fred Turoff recently finished his 38th year leading the program, which will convert to a club team for next year. The reason administrators gave for cutting the squad was that they didn’t want the men’s and women’s teams to share training space in Pearson Hall (pictured above) – even though 13 of 14 schools that have both a men’s and women’s team share space.

3. Administrators said the main reason the crew and rowing teams were cut was the lack of funding to renovate the teams’ boathouse, known as the East Park Canoe House. H.F. “Gerry” Lenfest, a Temple trustee and philanthropist, donated $3 million of the $5.5 million needed to do so, while the remainder was put up by the city of Philadelphia. As a result, the crew and rowing cuts were overturned.

4. Track and field athlete Justin Berg originally went to Millersville University, but transferred to Temple after the Marauders cut their program in 2012. Now, Berg will transfer to his third school – Penn State – after his program was cut for a second time.

5 and 6. Pitchers Eric and Patrick Peterson were considered the baseball team’s best players before the cuts, with Eric and Patrick putting up 3.03 and 4.43 ERAs, respectively, in 2013. Soon after the cuts were announced, the brothers transferred to North Carolina State, a team ranked in the preseason NCAA top 10.

– Text and image by Evan Cross and Joey Cranney

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