ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The University of New Mexico ski team has been reinstated for another year.
During Thursday afternoon’s Board of Regents meeting, the university’s acting president announced the decision to reinstate the UNM NCAA Divison 1 Ski Team.
In April UNM Athletics Department announced that cutting the program would save around $600,000.
Tyler Theis, a sophomore member of the ski team, said, “I hope they continue to find support and they continue this for decades after I’m here because it’s an awesome program and it’s good for people in the same boat as me who want an education and still pursue skiing.”
“It’s a great feeling for sure. Good news today,” said Coach Fredrik Landstedt.
“It’s going to be hard to recruit and to fundraise and even to keep the athletes we currently have until we have a commitment for the program to be around for a long period of time,” he added.
Since its start in 1968, the ski team has earned 17 individual NCAA championship titles. It is also only one of two UNM athletic programs to ever win an NCAA title.
UNM Acting President Abdallah issued the following statement regarding the decision:
Several months ago I directed Vice-President Paul Krebs to develop cost saving measures that would bring the Athletics Department’s budget into balance. I instructed him to consider any and all legal means to accomplish this objective.
As has been widely reported, VP Krebs has eliminated a number of positions, has several new donors and eliminated the sport of skiing.
All of these actions will lead to a more balanced budget in the department, barring unforeseen problems.
With respect to skiing, Mr. Krebs has received relentless, and in my opinion, undeserved criticism for this decision, even though he was following my directions. This is unfortunate.
However, substantial good has come from this decision, as those who care about this sport have pledged financial assistance for next year which will allow us to explore long-term financial commitments. So, today I am announcing that we will reinstate skiing for next year while we seek those solutions.
This is indeed a good day to be a Lobo student athlete.