MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. (AP) — Central Michigan University is defending its decision to eliminate the men’s track team, saying it was a financial move and not a discriminatory step.

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights informed CMU this week that it had received a complaint. The government said it will remain neutral while collecting and analyzing evidence.

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CMU said in 2020 that it was dropping the track team. It subsequently added a men’s golf team.

The 2019-20 track team had 30 athletes, including six who were Black or identified as multi-racial, CMU said.

“I firmly believe the investigation will find no evidence to support claims of racial discrimination, which are inaccurate and misleading,” President Bob Davies said.

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CMU said the track team cost $1 million a year while golf will be half that amount, the Morning Sun reported.

“The decision to eliminate any team always comes as a last resort and difficult for all individuals involved,” Davies said.

CMU is struggling to attract students. Enrollment was down 45% last fall to 15,465 compared to 2010, The Detroit News reported.

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