Providence Friars

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Providence Friars
University Providence College
Conference Big East / Hockey East
NCAA Division I
Athletic director Robert Driscoll
Location Providence, RI
Varsity teams 19
Basketball arena Dunkin' Donuts Center
Other arenas Alumni Hall
Schneider Arena
Mascot Friar Dom
Nickname Friars
Fight song When the Saints Go Marching In (since the 1950s);
"Friar Away" (original)
     Black       White       Silver

The Providence Friars is the name of the athletic teams of Providence College. They compete in the Big East Conference (NCAA Division I) for every sport except for ice hockey, where they compete in Hockey East. The Big East Conference was founded in 1979 by former athletic director and men's basketball coach Dave Gavitt. On December 15, 2012, Providence and the other seven Catholic, non-FBS schools announced that they were departing the Big East for a new conference;[1] on March 7, 2013, it was officially confirmed that Providence's new conference would operate under the Big East name.[2] The women's volleyball team, which had been an associate member of the America East Conference before the Big East split, remained in that conference for one more season before joining the Big East for the 2014 season.[3]

The school's men's and women's sports teams are called the Friars, after the Dominican Order that runs the school. They are the only collegiate team to use the name.

Overall, the program consists of 19 varsity sports, seven for men and ten for women: men's and women's basketball, men's and women's cross country, field hockey, men's and women's ice hockey, men's lacrosse, men's and women's soccer, softball, men's and women's swimming and diving, women's tennis, men's and women's track and field, and women's volleyball. The lacrosse team competed in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference through the 2009 season before joining the newly created Big East lacrosse league for 2010.

Former sports include football, which was offered from 1921 until World War II in 1941, and baseball, which was dropped due to Title IX in 1999. Other dropped sports include men's tennis and men's golf.

The school's biggest rivalries are Boston University and Boston College in hockey and UConn and URI in the school's other sports, especially in soccer, swimming and diving, and basketball.

Athletic facilities[edit]

All home games are played on-campus, with the exception of men's basketball:

  • Dunkin' Donuts Center – the home court for men's basketball, located in downtown Providence; opened in 1972, known as the Providence Civic Center until 2001
  • Alumni Hall – the home court (Mullaney Gymnasium since 2001) for women's basketball; opened in 1955; home of men's basketball until 1972; also contains administrative offices for athletics and the Canavan Sports Medicine Center (opened in 2008)
  • Schneider Arena – the home ice rink for men's and women's hockey; opened in 1973. Renovations began 2012 and expected to re-open in September 2013.
  • Taylor Natatorium – located in the Peterson Recreation Center adjacent to Alumni Hall; home to the Providence College men's and women's swimming & diving programs
  • Jimmy Walker Strength and Conditioning Center – located in the Concannon Fitness Center; opened in 2007; used by varsity athletes only
  • Glay Field – home field for men's and women's soccer; opened in 1976
  • Raymond Field – home field for softball; opened in 2001
  • Lennon Family Field – home field for field hockey and lacrosse; opened in 2005; also used for club and intramural sports
  • Ray Tracey Track & Turf Field- On the former Hendricken Field, it host the Friars Track & Field, rugby and soccer teams

Men's basketball[edit]

Women's basketball[edit]

Men's ice hockey[edit]

Women's ice hockey[edit]

Colors, mascot and fight songs[edit]

The Dominicans' use of black and white as the colors of their habits were passed on from the earliest days at Providence College as the school colors. Through the years, various highlight colors have come and gone, including yellow, red and gold; the current highlight color of silver dates to the introduction of the current logo in 2002. The current logo shows a cowled Friar in profile. It is used by all teams except the hockey teams, who have used the "Skating Friar" logo since 1973.

The nickname "Friars" dates back to 1929, when a Providence Journal article used the nickname in reference to the baseball team. Previously, the teams were variously known as "The Black and White" or "Dominicans." The Friars nickname comes from the short-form nickname of the Dominican Order, the "Blackfriars."

The original Friars fight song was "Friar Away." However, in the 1950s, WPRO, the radio station that still carries Friar basketball games to this day, began using "When The Saints Go Marching In" as the theme music to their coverage of PC basketball games. The fans took to it so well that it has become the fight song of the college, with Friar Away slipping into obscurity, save for a brief revival in the late 1990s, when the sheet music was rediscovered by a student conductor.

Little known fact, Mike Keane (2013 alum) was actually the school Mascot.


  1. ^ "Seven schools leaving Big East". December 15, 2012. Retrieved December 16, 2012. 
  2. ^ "Big East, Catholic 7 reach agreement". ESPN. March 5, 2013. Retrieved March 9, 2013. 
  3. ^ "Women's Volleyball To Join BIG EAST Conference" (Press release). Providence College Athletics. April 7, 2014. Retrieved June 11, 2014. 

External links[edit]