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Daryl Gross Talks Potential Of Syracuse Baseball, Men's Hockey

During today's Q&A with, Daryl Gross sort of talked about the possibility of Syracuse getting men's hockey and baseball teams.

Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

As you know, hosted DOCTOR Daryl Gross today for a two-hour, live Q&A session.

At one point during the Q&A, Gross was asked about the potential of Syracuse getting baseball and men's hockey programs. His answer:

"We have studied those sports, but first on the agenda is making sure we are funding and supporting all of our existing programs at the ACC championship level. That being said, Ice Hockey has a wonderful regional participation and fan appeal, and baseball is core to our new league as one of the major sports in the ACC. As we move forward we always will consider Title IX and pursuing additional opportunities for young women in intercollegiate athletics. We hope to get to the point to study more intently the options."

Really, Gross said a whole lot of nothing with that 91-word quote. Still, it's fun to at least think about the potential of getting baseball and men's hockey programs at Syracuse. And, for the sake of this discussion, a Division I men's hockey team would seem to make more sense than baseball. After all, this IS Syracuse.

When Arizona State announced last month that it would be upgrading its men's club hockey program to Division I, some of the TNIAAM crew got together to talk about why Syracuse can't do the same.

Among the answers discussed:

  • Money: Obviously, it would require some money being spent to launch a men's hockey program, and that's before we even discuss finding/building the right venue, which would just cost more money. I like Tennity, but a Division I men's hockey team isn't playing there.
  • Title IX: If Syracuse started a Division I men's hockey program, that would mean more scholarships for male athletes. Because Title IX requires that athletic scholarships be proportional to the student population (which, at Syracuse, is roughly 55% female/45% male), Syracuse would then have to figure out how to balance out those scholarships, which means adding a women's team somewhere, too.
  • Where would Syracuse play? There is no hockey league in the ACC, and the league that would make most sense for Syracuse -- Hockey East -- is at its capacity with 12 teams.
Men's hockey would be fun -- there's no doubting that. But, at least at this point, it doesn't seem like something that's likely to come to SU in the immediate future. And it feels safe to say that we're even further away from a baseball team. (Ed. note: But you can also bet John Swofford and the rest of the ACC is really pushing for Syracuse to start one ASAP just the same).