Cardinal Stritch University Wolves Athletics will add eight new athletics teams for the 2013-2014 academic year, university officials announced today.
The new teams will include men’s track and field, women’s track and field, men’s bowling, women’s bowling, men’s tennis, women’s tennis, men’s golf and women’s golf.
“Stritch has long embraced the leadership and character development that come with athletic participation,” said Dr. James Loftus, Stritch president. “These additions will not only afford new opportunities for our students to seek out those enriching activities, but will also enhance the student life experience for our entire campus community.”
An in-depth demographic analysis of college students in Wisconsin and nationwide took place, which revealed high interest in these new programs. For example, according to the National Research Center for College and University Admissions, the appeal of bowling as a participatory activity will increase by 9.4 percent for students in Wisconsin and 5.6 percent for students nationally in the next five years. Increases are also anticipated in golf, tennis, and track and field.
The Stritch Wolves are affiliated with the National Association for Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and are part of the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC). The new teams will compete in the same conference, with the exception of bowling, which is an emerging sport in the NAIA. Student bowlers will attend tournaments in and out of state.
“This marks a new day for athletics at Stritch,” said Patrick Clemens, Stritch athletic director. “We are excited about bringing new student athletes to campus and sharing the traditions of Stritch with them, as well as adding new opportunities for our students and creating new levels of excitement for our student body.”
Arrangements for home facilities are being finalized and will be announced later, Clemens said.
Athletics has long played an important role at Stritch. In 1971, basketball became the first intercollegiate sport for men. Over the years, additional programs were added, including women’s basketball, men’s baseball, women’s softball, men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s soccer, and men’s and women’s volleyball.
Since 2008, Stritch Athletics has had 59 all-conference athletes, 13 NAIA All-Americans, 40 Stritch Scholar Athletes, 51 CCAC Scholar Athletes, 25 NAIA Scholar Athletes, nine NAIA National Tournament appearances, 19 conference tournament appearances, nine regular season conference championships, five conference tournament championships, seven conference coaches of the year, and five conference players of the year.