FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Hofstra alum Kyle Arrington expressed disbelief Thursday upon being told his alma mater was dropping its football program.
Just a short time before the Patriots' locker room opened to the media, the university announced it was dropping football, citing high costs and low interest from the college community.
It is the second Colonial Athletic Association program to drop football in the past 10 days, with Boston-based Northeastern University shuttering its gridiron program on Nov. 23.
"The worst we heard was that [head coach David] Cohen was on the hot seat," said Arrington. "That was it... I can't believe it. We have to get football back."
Arrington only found out about the decision when a reporter approached him at his locker at the start of the period open to the media this morning. As soon as he turned on his cell phone, it began buzzing with friends relaying the same news via text message.
Hofstra produced five NFL draft picks since 1991, including New Orleans Saints wide receiver Marques Colston and Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle Willie Colon. Former Pride quarterback Giovanni Carmazzi was a third-round choice of the San Francisco 49ers in 2000, and former New York Jets receiver Wayne Chrebet played there.
Arrington went undrafted coming out of Hofstra in 2008, but latched on with the Patriots' practice squad in September. He was elevated to the active roster on Nov. 5 and has appeared in three games, registering five special-teams tackles.
Arrington said Hofstra was the only Division 1-AA program to offer him out of high school (he missed his entire junior year in high school due to injury). The Maryland native said he'd probably have to start supporting Delaware without his own college program to root for.
Arrington is hoping his girlfriend doesn't get wind of the news. He said he's often teased her about the fact that her college -- St. John's University -- doesn't have a football program.
"I'd always ask her who her homecoming game is," said Arrington, shaking his head. "I'm not going to tell her. Someone else will have to her."
Hofstra's final game was a 52-38 win over visiting UMass on Nov. 21. The team, which went 5-6 (3-5 CAA) this season, posted a 403-268-11 mark over 69 seasons.