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Armstrong State University joined Georgia Southern University for a working group which yielded a recommendation to end intercollegiate competition at Armstrong State University following the 2016-17 athletic year.

The recommendation will be sent to the Consolidation Implementation Committee (CIC).

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The schools report several issues that brought group members to the decision. The schools say that the health and safety of student athletes could be at risk due to the changes and because of roster changes already in place, the many teams would not have enough for a full season.

“This was a very difficult decision, but it is in the best interest of our student-athletes,” said Lisa Sweany, Armstrong’s athletic director. “This decision is being made now so that student-athletes and staff can focus on their future and what is in their best interest. I’m very proud of what our student-athletes, coaches and administrators have accomplished during my time at Armstrong.”

Women’s soccer, women’s volleyball, men’s and women’s cross country and men’s and women’s basketball have completed their championship segments and will not participate in further intercollegiate competition.

Baseball, softball, men’s and women’s tennis and men’s and women’s golf are currently in season and will each finish their 2017 spring semester of competition.

By discontinuing Armstrong’s athletics programs at the conclusion of the 2016-17 athletic year, any student-athlete who elects to transfer at the end of the Spring 2017 semester can apply the dropped sport exception, which allows them to compete immediately, without sitting a year in residency, according to the statement released Tuesday.

All athletics-related scholarships for affected student athletes will be honored, provided students are making satisfactory academic progress.

 

Pending approval of the recommendation by the CIC to end Armstrong athletics, the current 2016-17 season will culminate 50 years of Pirate athletics.

 

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Jessica Szilagyi is statewide contributor for All On Georgia and Market Manager for Southeast Georgia. Her main focus with All On Georgia is state and local politics as well as agriculture. She’s served as a policy analyst at the State Capitol and as a campaign manager in political races across the state.

She writes for GeorgiaPol.com and has two blogs of her own: ‘The Perspicacious Conservative’, a political blog, and ‘Hair Blowers to Lawn Mowers’, a blog on moving from Atlanta to rural Georgia. Jessica is also a contributor for Fox5 Atlanta’s ‘Like it Or Not.’

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