Robert Morris Colonials
|Robert Morris Colonials|
|University||Robert Morris University|
FCS independent (football)
Atlantic Hockey (men's ice hockey)
College Hockey America (women's ice hockey)
Mid-American Conference (women's lacrosse)
College Hockey Mid-America (ACHA)
|Athletic director||Chris King|
|Location||Moon Township, Pennsylvania|
|Football stadium||Joe Walton Stadium|
|Basketball arena||Charles L. Sewall Center (1985-2017)|
UPMC Events Center (November 2019-present)
|Ice hockey arena||Colonials Arena|
|Softball stadium||North Athletic Complex|
|Soccer stadium||North Athletic Complex|
|Lacrosse stadium||Joe Walton Stadium|
|Fight song||Go Colonials|
|Colors||Blue, White, and Red|
The Robert Morris Colonials are the athletic teams for Robert Morris University, in Moon Township, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Pittsburgh. The Colonials compete in NCAA Division I (FCS, formerly Division I-AA, in football). In 2020, the school joined the Horizon League as a full member after leaving the Northeast Conference. The football team will play the 2020 season as an FCS independent before joining Big South Conference football in 2021. The school colors are RMU Blue, RMU Red, and RMU Gray/Silver.
In December 2013, Robert Morris announced the school was cutting seven sports programs after the 2013–14 season: men's indoor and outdoor track, tennis and cross country and women's golf, tennis and field hockey.
|Men's sports||Women's sports|
|Track and field†|
|† – Track and field includes both indoor and outdoor|
Men's and women's basketball
The men's team, which achieved NCAA Division I status starting with the 1976–77 season, has played in eight NCAA Tournaments:
- 1982 Lost to Indiana (first round)
- 1983 Lost to Purdue (first round)
- 1989 Lost to Arizona (first round)
- 1990 Lost to Kansas (first round)
- 1992 Lost to UCLA (first round)
- 2009 Lost to Michigan State (first round)
- 2010 Lost to Villanova (first round)
- 2015 Lost to Duke (second round)
In 1983, they won their first NCAA Tournament game, a "play-in" game against Georgia Southern, which earned them the right to play Purdue in the first round.
The men's team played in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) in 2008, 2013, and 2014. They defeated defending national champion Kentucky in the first round of the 2013 NIT, a game that was played on the Robert Morris campus because Rupp Arena in Lexington, KY, was not available.
In recent years, both the men's and women's teams have had success in their conference. The women's team won the NEC Championship in 2008 and made an appearance in the 2008 NCAA Tournament, only to bow out in the first round to Rutgers. The women's team won the NEC Championship again in 2014, losing to Notre Dame in the first round of the 2014 NCAA Tournament.
The men's team won the 2009 NEC Championship, beating Mount St. Mary's 48-46. With the win, the school qualified for the 2009 NCAA Tournament, their sixth trip to the tournament. Their seventh trip came a year later, when the Colonials became the first team to beat Quinnipiac on the Bobcats' home court all season. The 52–50 win set up a date with Villanova in the 2010 NCAA Tournament. Behind 23 points from freshman guard Karon Abraham, No. 15 Robert Morris nearly pulled off an upset of the No. 2 Wildcats, leading much of the game before falling 73–70 in overtime.
The 2015 men's team followed their NEC Championship with the second NCAA Tournament game victory in school history, an 81–77 "play-in" game triumph over the University of North Florida. The victory earned the team a first round match-up with the eventual national champion, Duke Blue Devils.
The men's ice hockey team competes in NCAA DI Atlantic Hockey, and the women's team competes in NCAA DI College Hockey America. RMU also fields a men's ACHA DI team that is a member of College Hockey Mid-America.
Since 2006, the ice hockey team has hosted the Three Rivers Classic (previously known as the Pittsburgh Collegiate Hockey Showcase until 2012), currently played at PPG Paints Arena (previously played at the now-demolished Mellon Arena.)The 2010 match-up featured No. 1 ranked Miami (Ohio). The 3–12–3 Colonials upset the RedHawks, 3–1. Two days later the Colonials won again at Miami. The Colonials' biggest previous win since the program was started in 2004 was against No. 2 Notre Dame in 2007. Former professional hockey-player David Hanson (of Slap Shot fame) currently manages RMU's Island Sports Complex.
Other athletic teams
The football and lacrosse teams play in Joe Walton Stadium, named in honor of former football team head coach Joe Walton, formerly the head coach of the NFL's New York Jets in the 1980s, and who started the program at Robert Morris in 1993. Walton led the team to the first Northeast Conference championship in 1996 and guided it to a perfect 10–0 season in 2000. Also, in 2010, Walton coached the Colonials football team to the NEC's inaugural bid to the FCS Playoffs with their league-high sixth regular-season championship. Walton retired after the 2013 program, handing the reigns over to top assistant John Banaszak, who won multiple Super Bowls as a defensive end with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
On February 14, 2009, the men's lacrosse team defeated Penn State 12-11 in double overtime in the program's biggest victory at Joe Walton Stadium.
- "RMU Athletics Logo". September 9, 2013. Retrieved November 3, 2018.
- Robert Morris to cut 7 programs
- Sanserino, Michael (January 9, 2010). "Pittsburgh Hockey Showcase: Colonials upset Miami, 3-1". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
- RMU Colonials Head Coach Joe Walton bio at RMU Colonials Athletics website