Stanford Reverses Decision To Cut 11 Sports After 2 Lawsuits Filed

After athletes on the targeted teams filed two federal lawsuits against Stanford University, the university has reinstated the 11 varsity sports programs it cut last July.

The university says negotiations to reinstate the teams were “already far along” and that the decision to keep the 11 sports programs was reached before the legal action.

The 11 teams – men’s and women’s fencing, field hockey, lightweight rowing, men’s rowing, co-ed and women’s sailing, squash, synchronized swimming, men’s volleyball and wrestling β€” will continue competing as varsity teams at Stanford.

One lawsuit accused the university of misleading athletes and violating their rights, and the second, brought by female athletes, claimed sex discrimination, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

Stanford President Marc Tessier-Lavigne said Tuesday’s announcement was independent of the filing and that the university was “disappointed by these suits” because conversations were ongoing. He said the school is pleased to be on a more positive path.

“It’s worth noting that, while we were aware of two lawsuits filed on this subject last week, our discussions with 36 Sports Strong and other constituencies were already far along, and we reached the conclusion we are announcing today independent of their filing,” Tessier-Lavigne said.

He said the school made the decision to keep the sports based on an updated assessment of the financial viability of retaining all 36 teams, stronger interest among alumni willing to pledge funds and an improvement in the financial investment markets over the last 10 months.

“The changing conditions led us to re-evaluate the potential to raise the increased funds necessary to support all 36 teams,” Tessier-Lavigne said. “Based on the circumstances now before us, we believe such an approach can succeed.”

Written by Megan Turner

Megan graduated from the University of Central Florida and writes and tweets about anything related to sports. She replies to comments she shouldn't reply to online and thinks the CFP Rankings are absolutely rigged. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

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  1. Stanford University fields more varsity sports than I believe any other Power 5 school. (I did not research this so I could be wrong, but if not they’re near the top) They win the Director’s Cup every year because they have 36 varsity sports. My alma mater, USC, has 23 and UCLA has 22. Our three schools have more national championships than the next than the next 9 schools combined. Stanford has 68 men’s championships and 60 women’s. There was great anxiety around Palo Alto when they cut these sports, because they win so many natty’s due to the fact no one else has a team. BTW, this does not include football national championships.

  2. Coed sailing and women’s sailing, fencing and lightweight rowing.and synchronized swimming! But anyway, I really don’t understand why a University can be forced to carry a sport. Title IX notwithstanding, which I also think is ridiculous. But hey, the whole system is a gimmick these days, offering poor quality education to most.

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