On Friday, Stony Brook Director of Athletics Shawn Heilbron announced that Stony Brook’s men’s tennis program will be discontinued following the 2016-17 season.
In 2014, the America East Conference dropped men’s tennis as a sponsored sport. Since then, Stony Brook has been competing in the Missouri Valley Conference. The university’s decision to discontinue the team “stems from recent changes in the conference landscape that has caused several institutions to eliminate both their men and women’s tennis,” Heilbron said in a news release.
Stony Brook will retain its women’s tennis program, which is currently in its first full season as a member of the Missouri Valley Conference. Heilbron stressed that this decision relied heavily on conference alignment.
“This difficult decision for our men’s program, while ultimately helping from a budget standpoint, was not driven by that factor,” Heilbron said. “Without a conference, we simply can’t operate as an independent program and expect to compete on a level that would allow our student-athletes to have a first class athletic experience.”
Seven of the 10 members on Stony Brook’s men’s tennis team have remaining eligibility and should they decide to transfer and play for another school, will be granted full releases. For members of the program remaining at Stony Brook, the school plans to honor whatever scholarships or financial aid they have throughout their matriculation.
The team’s next match is on Wednesday, April 5 against Wagner at 1 p.m.. The program’s final home match ever will be on April 14 versus UConn at 3 p.m..