Patriot League (football)
Football Championship Subdivision
|Athletics director||David Roach|
|Football stadium||Jack Coffey Field|
|Basketball arena||Rose Hill Gymnasium|
|Baseball stadium||Houlihan Park|
|Other arenas||Vincent T. Lombardi Memorial Center|
|Fight song||The Ram|
|Colors||Maroon and white
The 22 Fordham University varsity sports teams are known as the Fordham Rams. Their colors are maroon and white. The Fordham Rams are members of NCAA Division I and compete in the Atlantic 10 Conference for all sports except football. In football, the Rams play in the Patriot League of NCAA Division 1 Football Championship Subdivision. The University also supports a number of club sports, and a significant intramural sports program. The University's athletic booster clubs include the Sixth Man Club for basketball and the Twelfth Man Club for football, as well as the Afterguard for sailing.
Fordham University sports, though not part of the Ivy League, has nevertheless been credited with inspiring the term by comparison. The first usage of "Ivy" in reference to a group of colleges is from sportswriter Stanley Woodward (1895–1965). In an article that appeared in the New York Tribune on October 14, 1933, Woodward, referencing football, wrote
|“||A proportion of our eastern ivy colleges are meeting little fellows another Saturday before plunging into the strife and the turmoil.||”|
William Morris writes that Stanley Woodward actually took the term from fellow New York Tribune sportswriter Caswell Adams. Morris writes that during the 1930s, the Fordham University football team was running roughshod over all its opponents. One day in the sports room at the Tribune, the merits of Fordham's football team was being compared to Princeton and Columbia. Adams remarked disparagingly of the latter two, saying they were "only Ivy League." Woodward, the sports editor of the Tribune, picked up the term and printed it the next day.
Founded in the late 1850s, the Fordham Rose Hill Baseball Club of St. John's College (the precursor to Fordham University, and of no connection at all to St. John's University) played against St. Francis Xavier College in the first ever nine-man-team college baseball game on November 3, 1859. Fordham is the all time NCAA leader in wins.
There have been 56 major leaguers who have played for Fordham, including All-Star pitcher Pete Harnisch and Baseball Hall of Famer Frankie Frisch. Frisch, a star athlete in four different sports at Fordham, was known as the "Fordham Flash". Steve Bellán, first Latin American to play Major League Baseball, started his career as a player at St. John's College.
The team plays home games at Houlihan Park at Jack Coffey Field. Jack Coffey Field, a multisport facility, is named after Jack Coffey, former athletic director and baseball coach at the University. He amassed 817 wins as a baseball coach. Coffey is the only player to play with both Ty Cobb and Babe Ruth in the same season (1918 Detroit Tigers and Boston Red Sox). The baseball portion of the field was renamed "Houlihan Park" after renovations completed in 2005.
Fordham began competing in men's basketball in 1902. They played their first game in Rose Hill Gymnasium in 1925 (defeating Boston College, 46–16). On February 28, 1940, Fordham hosted the University of Pittsburgh at Madison Square Garden in the first ever televised basketball game. Pitt won, 57–37. The game was televised by NBC. Fordham University enjoyed its best season in 1970–1971, when the squad went 26–3 under coach Digger Phelps and was ranked number nine in the nation in the AP poll.
Fordham has participated in four NCAA Tournaments (1953, 1954, 1971, 1992), and sixteen NITs (1943, 1958, 1959, 1963, 1965, 1968, 1969, 1972, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1988, 1990, 1991). Though Fordham won the 1991 Patriot League Tournament, the NCAA did not grant the Patriot League an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament that year. Instead, Fordham played in one of three "play-in games", but lost, and was not considered to have reached the NCAA Tournament.
In the 2009–10 season, Fordham went 0–16 in the A-10 conference season (2–26 overall), becoming the first team to go winless in an A-10 conference season since St. Bonaventure in 1992–93. That winless streak, which started during the 2008–09 season, ended on the 2010–11 season's final game, snapping the streak at 41.
Through the end of the 2010–11 season, the program's cumulative record is 1444 wins and 1237 losses (.539 win percentage).
Women's basketball at Fordham began as a club team in 1963–64. They became an NCAA competitive team in 1970–71. The Rams won the Patriot League Championship in 1992 and 1994. They played in the 1994 NCAA Tournament.
The Fordham Rams Cross-Country team, which competes in the Atlantic 10 Conference, won the IC4A 2006 Championships at Van Cortlandt Park. It was the team's first IC4A Championship in almost twenty years.
First recognized as a sport at St. John's College in 1882, Fordham in its hey-day has played before sellout crowds at the Polo Grounds and Yankee Stadium. In the mid-1930s, Fordham boasted what might have been the greatest offensive and defensive line in college history—the "Seven Blocks of Granite". Tackle Ed Franco was a consensus All-American. So was center Alex Wojciechowicz who later became an All-Pro with Detroit and Philadelphia. Guard Vince Lombardi later became one of the greatest of pro coaches. In 1937, the team went undefeated and was ranked number three nationally. So popular was Fordham, that the Cleveland NFL franchise formed in the '30s took its nickname from the Rams of the Bronx. The Cleveland Rams later moved to Los Angeles and then to St. Louis, Missouri, and are now known as the St. Louis Rams.
On September 30, 1939, Fordham participated in the world's first televised American football game. In front of the sport's first live TV audience, the Rams defeated Waynesburg College, 34–7. The following week they lost the second ever televised game to the University of Alabama, 7–6. It was not for another month that a professional NFL game was televised.
On December 15, 1954, Fordham scratched its football program for various reasons, mainly financial. A club football team was established in 1964 (on shaky authority) and football was re-established as a varsity sport in 1970, but in Division III. Fordham joined what is now the NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision in 1989.
With 722 all-time wins at the close of the 2005 season, Fordham's football program ranks 15th among Division I programs on the all-time NCAA wins list, and fifth among programs currently playing in the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision, trailing only Yale University, the University of Pennsylvania, Harvard University, and Princeton University (putting the Rams in first among non-Ivy League schools in the FCS standings).
Fordham was invited to play in the 1942 Rose Bowl, but declined the invitation because it had previously accepted a berth in the 1942 Sugar Bowl. The Rams, who defeated the University of Missouri by a 2–0 score, were the 1942 Sugar Bowl champions. The Rams also played in the 1941 Cotton Bowl Classic but lost, 13–12, to Texas A&M. At least one source lists Fordham as the 1929 National Football Champions.
Since 2002, Fordham has played Columbia University for The Liberty Cup. The trophy was dedicated after the attacks of Sep 11, 2001 forced the postponement of the first annual meeting between New York City's two Division I football programs. In 2009 the university announced that it will be offering scholarships for football for the first time since 1954. This makes the Rams ineligible to compete for the Patriot League championship, but simultaneously allows them to schedule games with Football Bowl Subdivision teams such as the Army Black Knights and the Navy Midshipmen (which are members of the Patriot League outside football), both immediately scheduled. In addition, the Rams are still eligible for an at-large bid for the Championship Subdivision play-offs.
- National Championship: 1929
- Bowl games:
- Patriot League Champions: 2002, 2007
- NCAA Football Championship Subdivision Playoffs: 2002 (Quarterfinal Loss), 2007 (first round loss)
- Division III Playoffs: 1987 (quarterfinal loss)
- Liberty Cup Winners: 2003, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011
- Wins: 722 at the end of 2005 season, 15th most wins in NCAA, 5th most wins in Division I Football Championship Subdivision
Current players in professional football 
- Javarus Dudley, WR, Orlando Predators
- Kevin Eakin, QB, Team Alabama
- Aki Jones, DL, New York Dragons
- Tad Kornegay, DB, Calgary Stampeders
- Cary Williams, CB, Baltimore Ravens
- John Skelton, QB, Arizona Cardinals
- Andrew Tyshovnytsky, OL, Indianapolis Colts
Swimming and diving 
Fordham's Women's Swimming and Diving team was the first women's team to win an A10 championship. The men's swimming and diving team has also been successful in recent years.
Track and field 
||This section needs additional citations for verification. (January 2009)|
Johnny Gibson, a 1928 graduate of Fordham, broke the 440 yd (400 m) Hurdles World Record while at the school and made the 1928 Olympic team in the same event. Gibson is known as a great contributor to the world of track and field as a founding member of the New Jersey Track and Field Officials Association and head coach of men's track and field at Seton Hall University from 1945 to 1972. Sam Perry set the World Record for the 60-yard dash indoors at the Milrose Games in 1965.
Tom Courtney won Olympic Gold in the 800 m run at the 1956 Games. While at Fordham Courtney had anchored the 2 Mile Relay that broke the world record in 1954.
Fordham track has had a resurgence in the past two decades with an All-Americans and numerous conference champions. Barry Cantrell earned all-American honors in the high jump in 1998. There have been several Atlantic 10 Conference champions including the jumping events, hammer throw. and the intermediate hurdles.
In 2008, the men's Track and Field team won the Outdoor Metropolitan Championship. The title was the first ever Metropolitan Athletic Conference team title captured by the Rams in the school's history. In the 2009 Outdoor Season the Rams defended their title, while the Women's squad captured second in the team scoring.
Water polo 
Fordham's Men's Water Polo team is an NCAA Division 1 program. They compete in the Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) against Brown University, Connecticut College, Harvard University, Iona, MIT, Queens College, St. Francis College. In 2010 and 2009 they placed third and fifth in the CWPA Eastern Division championship. Their coach, Bill Harris, was awarded the CWPA Coach of the Year in 2009. Fordham University alumnus Chris Judge (class of 1980) was inducted into the CWPA Hall of Fame in 2010.
Men's crew has been a club sport at Fordham since 1915, when John Mulcahy (an alumnus and Olympic Gold medalist in the sport) helped found it there. Fordham Crew has since been quite successful, winning several national championships. The team is a member of the Dad Vail affiliation, making the Dad Vail Regatta the focus of its spring racing season. Exceptional crews have competed at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) National Championships, Henley Royal Regatta, and the San Diego Crew Classic. The team is divided into novice and varsity squads. Fordham Athletics also sponsors a women's varsity team.
Fordham Crew trains on the Harlem River. For many years the university maintained the last remaining boathouse on "sculler's row" off the river in Manhattan, along Sherman Creek, until it was destroyed by suspected arson in 1978. It has yet to be replaced. Currently, the club shares space at the Peter Jay Sharp Boathouse near Sherman Creek, the first community boathouse built in Manhattan in over 100 years. Since 1989, Fordham has medaled every year at the Dad Vail and other major collegiate regattas. During that period the team has had 9 undefeated seasons and 13 national championships: eight at the Dad Vail, three at the Eastern College Athletic Conference National Invitational Collegiate Regatta, one at the Division-I National Championships, and one at the IRA Championship. Fordham was the 2007 Dad Vail Champions in Men's Varsity Lightweight 4+ and the 2008 Dad Vail Champions in Men's Varsity Lightweight 8+.
The university supports hockey as a club sport. The team was created in the 1967–68 season playing and winning one game versus cross-town rival Manhattan College. The "Maroon Six" as they were known then, began playing a full slate of games during the 1970–71 season. The team joined the Metropolitan Intercollegiate Hockey League, in the fall of 1970 and began playing such teams as Columbia, Fairfield and St. Johns. Since then the team has held the longest tenure in its current league the Metropolitan Collegiate Hockey Conference (MCHC) after the MIHL changed its name during the 1974–75 season. In 2010, the Rams captured their second league championship, the teams first was in 2005–06. In 2011, the team lost in the Championship game to longtime rival Wagner College. The team has had 8 consecutive winning seasons, the longest in team history, and has qualified for the post season play every year for the last 11 seasons. The team also is a member of the American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA) which ranks club teams on a national basis.
Founded in 1970, the lacrosse program has grown tremendously. After years as the top independent lacrosse team in the New York metropolitan area, the team has been accepted to be a member of the National College Lacrosse League. The Rams currently compete in the New York Metro Division.
The University supports men's rugby as a club sport. They play in the Metropolitan New York Rugby Union, a member of USA Rugby, and field within it Division I 'A' and 'B' side rugby squads. The Rose Hill Campus is host every spring to the "Irish-Italian" men's rugby game, a staple of Fordham's Spring Weekend festival. The men's team won the Metropolitan New York Rugby Union (METNY) D-1 conference championship in 2003, 2004 and 2009 and made it to the first round of the national tournament in 2004, and also made an appearance in the second round of the national tournament in the fall of 2009. In the spring of 2009 Fordham Rugby were crowned champions of the annual Cherry Blossoms Tournament held in Washington DC.
The women's team is a three-time champion of the Big Apple Classic, which is hosted on Randall's Island, New York. They were also east coast champions in the spring of 2005.
Fordham is a regular member of the Middle Atlantic Intercollegiate Sailing Association (MAISA), one of seven regional conferences of the Intercollegiate Sailing Association of North America (ICSA), the governing body of US Sailing. With 43 schools and a geographical territory extending from Canada to Virginia, MAISA is one of the most competitive conferences in the country. Fordham placed 10th among all teams and 2nd among all club teams, in 2007. Fordham's home port is Morris Yacht & Beach Club, overlooking Long Island Sound and Eastchester Bay on City Island, a few miles from the Rose Hill campus.
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- Atlantic 10
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