September 26, 2007
Wayne State to Drop Hockey Program

Wayne State will discontinue its men's hockey program at the end of this season, the school announced today. The school cited state budget cuts as the reason for the move.

"Anytime you eliminate a program, it is a very difficult move. We exhausted every possible option before taking this step," stated athletic director Rob Fournier. "The reality of the economics of the state of Michigan, the educational imperatives of the university, and the need to manage our resources effectively led to this difficult decision. Importantly, however, the educational objectives of the men's hockey student-athletes will be protected."

Wayne State's decision drops the already-precarious College Hockey America to four schools: Alabama-Huntsville, Bemidji State, Niagara and Robert Morris. Bemidji State has openly pursued membership in the WCHA and cast doubts about its program's future if it is not admitted, while that league has indicated that it has no expansion plans on the horizon.

Wayne State is entering its ninth season, its eighth in the CHA. The Warriors won three consecutive league titles in 2001-03 and was the first CHA team to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament, in 2003.

The Warriors never had an on-campus arena and called a number of suburban Detroit rinks home in their nine-year existence.

The school's women's hockey program, which is a member of the CHA women's league, is unaffected by the decision.