Emporia State Hornets

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Emporia State Hornets
University Emporia State University
Conference MIAA
NCAA Division II
Athletic director Kent Weiser
Location Emporia, KS
Varsity teams 13
Football stadium Jones Field at Welch Stadium
Basketball arena Slaymaker Court in White Auditorium
Baseball stadium Glennen Field at Trusler Sports Complex
Mascot Corky the Hornet
Nickname Hornets
Fight song "Fight On Emporia!"
     Old Gold       Black
Website www.esuhornets.com
Athletics secondary logo

The Emporia State Hornets and Lady Hornets are the sports teams of Emporia State University located in Emporia, Kansas. They participate in the NCAA's Division II and in the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA).[1]



  • ESU Athletics has had four top four finishes since 2008 (Women's Basketball, 1st in 2010; Baseball, 2nd in 2009; Softball, 2nd in 2008; Men's Track and Field, 4th in 2011).[2]
  • ESU has produced 17 CoSIDA Academic All-Americans since 2000 to rank in the top 25 nationally.[2]
  • In 2003-04, ESU became the first school to have their football, men's basketball, women's basketball, baseball and softball teams all advance to NCAA play in the same school year.[2]
  • ESU is the only school in the MIAA to have both their baseball and softball teams earn NCAA Tournament berths in each of the last nine years.[2]
  • ESU has averaged over 100,000 fans a year at home events over the last eight years.[2]
  • ESU has placed in the top 50 out of over 300 Division II schools nationally in the Learfield Sports Director's Cup for seven straight years with a high of 11th in 2007-08.[2]

Women's basketball[edit]

Lady Hornets basketball





In March 2010, the Lady Hornets basketball team won the NCAA Division II National Championship, defeating the Fort Lewis College (Colorado) Skyhawks.[3]

In 1998, Emporia State's women's basketball team played in the NCAA Women's Division II Basketball Championship. The head coach for that team was Cindy Stein, who left to coach at the University of Missouri.

Women's basketball was second in the nation in attendance in 2010-11; it led the nation in 2004-05 and has been in the top six nationally for 14 years.


The softball team played for the national championship in 2008.


The baseball team played in the national championship game in 2009 and they were MIAA conference champions in 2011. They've played in 9 straight regional tournaments. The hornets have been pre-season ranked top 10 since 2009.


Football at Emporia State is played at Welch Stadium. The current football coach is Garin Higgins. The current head football coach at Emporia State is Garin Higgins, who has held the position since 2007. Higgins was an ESU quarterback from 1987-1990.[4] Past football coaches include Homer Woodson Hargiss, Jerry Kill, and Harold Elliott.


Corky small.png
Main article: Corky the Hornet

The official mascot of Emporia State Athletic teams is Corky, designed by Paul Edwards (1915— ), a former Disney artist[5]


Fight song[edit]

Fight On, Emporia! is the official fight song for Emporia State University.[6] The lyrics are listed below, as well as the mp3 version of the song.

Fight On, Emporia!


Fight on, Emporia, for the right, Emporia!
Unfold your black and gold,
Hold your banner high.
Rah! Rah! Rah!
Sing to Emporia, Alma Mater dear.
Might with right will always win the fight--
To victory, Emporia!

Written by Alfred Thompson (BME '34), student at Kansas State Teachers College.[6]

Alma mater[edit]

Shall we exalt our University
True to our forebears and posterity?
Our finest efforts we shall yield
In classroom, concert, lab and field-
And cheers for ESU
And cheers for ESU.

Shall we remember in our future years
Bold shouts of victory or sentimental tears?
Then shall the memories abound
We made these hallowed halls resound-
With cheers for ESU
With cheers for ESU.

Words by Tom Isern Music by Joseph Ott[7]

Current head coaches[edit]

Currently there are 10 head coaches in the athletics program.[8]

Name Sport
Bob Fornelli Baseball
Shaun Vandiver Men's basketball
Jory Collins Women's basketball
Eric Wellman Cross Country
Garin Higgins Football
Bryan Sailer Soccer
Julie LeMaire Softball
John Cayton Men/Women's tennis
Steven Blocker Men/Women's Track & Field
Bing Xu Volleyball

Notable alumni[edit]


External links[edit]