LC to discuss sports returning just months after its cancellation

Less than two months after Laredo College ended its sports program, the school will once again be discussing the possibility of Palominos athletics returning to campus.

Laredo College is set to meet on Thursday for its upcoming board of trustees meeting. And among the items on the school’s agenda is to discuss “Reinstating and/or Adding One or More Sports to the Laredo College Athletics Program.”

The item for discussion and possible action was brought by trustee Mercurio Martinez Jr. and may go into closed session.

This development continues the back-and-forth uncertain nature of athletics which was thought to be closed.


Laredo College decided to disband athletics during a board meeting on March 31, just a few months after it voted to bring back athletics following a two-year hiatus due to COVID during a meeting on Dec. 7.

The board had a wild swing in its vote between the two meetings. In the initial meeting, a 5-2 vote was in favor of bringing back athletics. And just a few months later, it instead rendered a 7-1 vote to disband the program.

Interestingly enough, the March meeting also featured the school choosing to replace its physically active athletics programs with esports — competitive, organized video gaming.

The decision shocked the community as LC students, parents and even coaches attended board meetings to show their support for the athletics program, even protesting with signs outside the buildings. 

In the time since the decision was made, LC has named its sole candidate to be its next president in Dr. Maria “Minita” Ramirez — although she was previously still pending negotiations to take the role.

See also  Sports Medicine Report: Latest injury updates ahead of Colorado clash #SKCvCOL | May 18, 2022

It’s unclear whether Ramirez’s incoming presence has contributed to this potential reversal of fortune for athletics, although some previously questioned why the school would have made such a big decision without a leader in place. LMT asked all three of LC’s final three presidential candidates about athletics through the school’s open forums to the public, but as the college chose which questions for the candidates to answer, the situation was never addressed. Ramirez has also not officially addressed the public since she was appointed the lone candidate on April 28.

Feelings about the decision have been heavily polarized, as some believe the college’s priorities should lie outside sports, while other believe sports open many opportunities for students to grow in and out of Laredo.

“How can you tell me that we should prioritize paying $250,000 a year for a soccer program when my professors can’t answer student emails,” said LC Chair of Social & Behavioral Sciences Dr. Hillary Gleason in December on professors’ computers being so old they wouldn’t turn on. “We are an institution of higher learning, and there is no degree in soccer at LC.”

On a different take, softball coach Kristi Lansford said the athletics department can give people from Laredo a chance to earn their degree and experience in their sport.

“Coaches aren’t coming to Laredo to recruit these kids,” Lansford said in December. “If they don’t have the opportunity to play, they don’t have the opportunity to teach.”

Previously, Palomino athletes were given permission to transfer out to other schools to continue their athletic careers.

See also  CBS Sports slights 49ers in 32-team offensive rankings