When the College of New Caledonia Kodiaksvolleyball teams stepped off the court to finish off the 2004/05 season, they didn’t know it would be at least a two year wait before they returned.
With CNC facing a $1.4 million budget shortfall the decision was made Thursday to cut funding to the CNC Kodiaks volleyball program.
“There is no funding and no volleyball program. As far as what's next I have no idea. We’ve been in budget talks for the past couple of weeks. I guess I didn’t know the full impact of the dire situation of the college in general. I thought when I submitted my budget, with a few changes and additions, that is what I would be fighting for not the overall straight of the program,” said athletic director Ann Oishi. The Kodiaks women’s team had a 5-15 record this season while the men’s Kodiaks were 1-19.
CNC President Ralph Troschke said the program is being cut for financial reason.
“It’s strictly financial. It’s not related to the team. It’s strictly a budget position. We certainly will be prepared to revisit it but our priority would be if we had additional money we’d rather put it in broader student services athletic programs which had more of a participation feel to it. It’s not a closed book but I think our priority would be to broaden services rather than provide a service to a handful of students,” said Troschke
Oishi said it would be at least two years before the volleyball program could return to the BCCAA level.
“We’re still going to need representation at the BCCAA level. We need to make sure the door stays open. I don’t know if we ‘re looking at other sports. It’s all too fresh. I am going to the AGM in May and find out what the league has in store for us,” said Oishi.
“The individual sports are a lot easier. They are less expensive, sports like badminton, golf and cross-country. But that might be a tough sell yanking a program we’ve had for 15 years.”
UNBC athletic director Len McNamara was surprised to hear the news. “It caught me by surprise like everyone else,” said McNamara. “I know there is a fair amount of volleyball played in the city. I would say volleyball in Prince George is as big if not bigger in volleyball and their club system is a lot bigger than basketball. It’s unfortunate for those involved to see that go by the wayside. I don’t want to say that not looking at what CNC’s long term plan is because they have been supportive of our program.”