The History of Union College Athletics

For nearly 100 years, Union College has enjoyed a rich history of excellence in intercollegiate athletics. Surprisingly, Union's first sponsored sport was women's basketball in 1905, which was soon followed by football that same year and men's basketball, tennis and baseball in 1906.

Since that time, Union has sponsored a host of sports from wrestling to tennis to swimming to golf to baseball to mountain biking. Union presently competes in 21 intercollegiate sports, which are baseball, men's and women's basketball, cheerleading, men's and women's cross country, cycling, football, men's and women's golf, men's and women's soccer, softball, men's and women's swimming and diving, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's indoor and outdoor track and field, and volleyball.

Union has garnered much success on the playing field, especially in recent years, having won 64 conference championships and nine NAIA region and district championships. Since 1990, Union has captured 33 conference championships and has had a team advance to the national championships 11 times, garnering its first team national title in 2002 when the mountain biking team won it all. (For a complete listing of Union's championships and national tournament appearances, click here.) During that time, Union has had 18 persons named to the NAIA All-American First and Second Teams. (For a complete listing of Union's All-Americans, click here.)

After leaving Union, a number of student-athletes have experienced careers in the professional ranks. Eleven former baseballers played professionally with two being selected in the Major League Baseball Amateur Draft, while six footballers made the jump to the next level. James Anderson, a former Bulldog standout on the hardwood, was drafted by the Portland Trailblazers of the National Basketball Association and spent seven years with the club.

As the individual and team success has grown over the years, so too has Union's athletic facilities. Since 1998, every athletic facility has undergone some form of renovation, giving Union one of the top overall athletic facilities in the NAIA. With the refurbishment and construction of the tennis courts, Union has shown once again its commitment to providing its student-athletes the best possible amenities in their quest for success.

As its first 100 years of athletic excellence comes to a close, Union has its sights set on bigger and better things in the century to come.