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Alumni, Donors Raise $1.5M to Save Bowling Green Baseball

Brock Fritz

The Bowling Green State University baseball program didn’t go away quietly. Now it’s not going away at all, as the university announced Tuesday that $1.5 million was raised to fund the program for the next three years.

“BGSU is grateful for its alumni and friends who have stepped up during this difficult time to ensure their alma mater is positioned to thrive on the other side of the current COVID-19 crisis,” Tuesday’s statement read. “We are inspired by the efforts of our baseball alumni, and we look forward to continuing to cultivate and reinvigorate all BGSU alumni. We are excited for Opening Day in the spring.”

The announcement came 18 days after BGSU director of athletics Bob Moosbrugger and president Rodney K. Rogers announced that the NCAA Division I baseball program was being cut as “part of a plan for a $2 million reduction to the operating budget of the intercollegiate athletics department.”

“This was a very difficult, but necessary, decision,” Bob Moosbrugger, who played baseball for the Falcons in the early 1990s, said in the university’s release. “We will ensure the student-athletes in the program have support during this challenging time. We will honor their scholarship agreements through graduation and, should they pursue their collegiate baseball career elsewhere, we will assist in the process of finding a new home.”

Related content: BGSU Drops Baseball to Save Athletic Department $2M

But that didn’t come to fruition, as the student-athletes and alumni got to work. When BGSU made the decision to cut baseball, it was intended to result in a cost savings of about $500,000 annually. The baseball alumni and donors decided to raise that money, committing $1.5 million for three years. The university and alumni will also work together to pursue long-term funding and support.

“It’s pretty awesome that the alumni came together and brought the program back,” Bowling Green junior infielder Dylan Dohanos told The Blade. “I definitely did not think it was going to happen, and they definitely defeated the odds, but it’s great to see the support from the alumni and the community. It was a very positive Zoom call today.”

Bowling Green baseball had a 2-11 record when the 2020 season was suspended in mid-March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Falcons went 16-33 in 2019, including 8-18 in the Mid-American Conference.

Related content: Donations Save University of Alabama-Huntsville Hockey

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