Fight to Save UAH Hockey Continues
by Adam Wodon/Managing Editor
The fight to save Alabama-Huntsville hockey continues on two fronts.
Alabama state representative Phil Williams told College Hockey News that he's working on legislation that will split Huntsville — and the Birmingham campus, as well — out of the University of Alabama system.
Rep. Williams hopes this will be a first step in saving hockey at UAH.
"(The idea) is becoming very popular around the state," Williams said.
In addition, Chargers hockey alumnus Nathan Bowen is spearheading a meeting this evening with new UAH president Robert Altenkirch. In it, he is expected to present a funding plan, including new donors.
Supporters are also hoping that Altenkirch will specifically spell out the parameters necessary for the program to continue.
Interim president Malcolm Portera — who is also the chancellor of the Alabama University system — made the decision to disband the program following this season, before stepping down in October. Portera cited a $1.5 million annual budget as a reason for his decision.
According to the Huntsville Times, Altenkirch has completed a budget review of the entire UAH athletic department, and could reveal his findings as soon as tonight.
"I expect us to finally learn the requirements for keeping D-I (hockey, at tonight's meeting)," Williams said. "That alone will be progress."