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I got to thinking......

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Is there anything the NCAA can do to prevent schools from just dropping a sport?   Some kind of review that would or would not validate the reasoning for the drop.  Whether not the NCAA would do anything is a whole other question, but I'm curious about the legality of it.  There are all kinds of requirements to being an NCAA sponsored institution.  Every school that is in the NCAA, it is a choice for them to do so.  So begs the question.  @JasonBryant, you may have some insight to this?

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The NCAA has minimum sponsorship requirements for number of sports in each division. The association gives the schools a lot of autonomy to decide what they want to do. The NCAA is made up of the schools, so it's not like "the NCAA" can do anything that the membership doesn't want.

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14 minutes ago, IronChef said:

The NCAA has minimum sponsorship requirements for number of sports in each division. The association gives the schools a lot of autonomy to decide what they want to do. The NCAA is made up of the schools, so it's not like "the NCAA" can do anything that the membership doesn't want.

Trying to find full list of requirements, but proving to be difficult.

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Each division has its requirements for membership, but even those can be skirted or cheated, such as the attendance requirement to be an FBS football program. Eastern Michigan routinely buys up enough tickets so they can hit the required average of (I believe) 15K per home game, when the actual butts in seats is closer to 4-5K. 

Central Michigan applied for a waiver to get by the six-sport men's minimum sponsorship number. They have to be at six within two years. That to me was the most dangerous situation of the over 400 teams cut since March 11, 2020. There is nothing that prevents schools from cutting sports other than the baseline of what they must be to maintain D1 status. IIRC, FCS and non-football D1 schools only need to sponsor 14 sports, where FBS schools need to sponsor 16. That typically leads to Football, Golf, Tennis, XC and T&F (counted twice) or some variant of that, sometimes including baseball instead of another. 

You can't drop basketball and be Division I. The NCAA is "run" by the school presidents. That's the membership. Title IX can't be used in the way it was blamed in the past. We all know that was the easy way out when it came to aligning gender equity numbers, but now, if you're an AD and you create a Title IX issue - you failed at your job. It's not something new. To blame Title IX in this era for sports cuts means you absolutely suck at your job and can't think for yourself. Too many of these administrators were taught by the "cut first" generation and that's the only way they know how to do things - same with the cut-first ADs who have become consultants and all they know how to do is cut sports. 

It's hard to tell a school what they should or shouldn't provide, the NCAA membership, which is the schools and those presidents, made the rules they abide by. They'd never agree to being held to a standard that doesn't give them an exit strategy. 

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Sport sponsorship requirements (if I'm reading the bylaws correctly)

Division I
FBS Schools - 16 sports with a minimum of 6 for men and 8 for women
FCS Schools (and non-football) - 14 sports with a minimum of 6 for men and 8 for women OR 7 for men and 7 for women

Division II
5 men's and 5 women's sports, at least 2 of each must be team sports
OR
4 men's and 5 women's sports, at least 2 of each must be team sports

Division III
Schools under 1,000 students - 5 men's and 5 women's sports, at least 3 of each must be team sports
Schools over 1,000 students - 6 men's and 6 women's sports, at least 3 of each must be team sports

Wrestling, swimming, track, and other sports where you compete individually are classified as individual sports

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