Muir Continues to Misstate Savings

PALO ALTO, CA - As reported in the Stanford Daily, athletic director Bernard Muir continues to misstate the amount of money Stanford University will save if the school moves forward with cutting 11 varsity sports.

"Bernard Muir should start being honest with the facts,” said Alexander Massialas, a supporter of 36 Sports Strong. “He falsely claims the cuts will reduce the deficit by half. The reality is, based on the department’s own numbers, cutting teams only saves $4.5 million. This is hardly enough money to close the gap.”

Checking Muir’s public claims against the facts released by the Athletic Depart reveals that Muir continues to misstate the important figures:

  • Only 20% of revenue currently comes from broadcast -- not 25% -- and that number is likely to decrease based on trends in NCAA TV contracts.

  • Cutting the 11 sports saves $4.5M per year, according to Department of Education filings, nowhere near "half" the projected deficit.

  • According to the Department's own forecast, the deficit increases after the cuts. The real problem of rising expenses has not been addressed.

“Given that some sports were backed by generous endowments, you have to question whether Muir cut teams so he could use the existing endowments to pay for other priorities such as bloated administrative salaries. Muir also misjudges the damage he has done to future donations. The truth is donors will be less likely to give if they fear the team will be cut next season based on Muir’s bad math and we’ve already seen evidence of this in the reversal of several sizable donations as well as prominent donors writing Stanford out of their will in response to this decision.”

“It’s time for Bernard Muir and Stanford’s leadership to sit down with 36 Sports Strong and find a new funding solution that ensures long term viability across all 36 varsity sports. Muir is cooking the books and hoping nobody notices.”

Also notable, U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) is joined by fellow Stanford University alums: Jennifer Azzi, ‘90; Julie Foudy, ‘92 and Andrew Luck, ‘12 in calling for the teams to be reinstated. A petition drive led by 36 Sports Strong has already gathered signatures from thousands of alumni.