Southern Illinois Salukis
|Southern Illinois University Salukis|
|University||Southern Illinois University|
|Conference||Missouri Valley Conference— All Women's & Most Men's Sports
Missouri Valley Football Conference— Football
Mid-American Conference— Men's Swimming & Diving
|Athletic director||Tommy Bell|
|Varsity teams||8 Men's & 8 Women's|
|Football stadium||Saluki Stadium|
|Basketball arena||SIU Arena|
|Other arenas||Davies Gym|
|Mascot||Brown Dawg & Gray Dawg|
|Fight song||Go Southern Go!|
The Southern Illinois Salukis are the varsity athletic teams representing Southern Illinois University Carbondale. The nickname comes from the Saluki, the Royal Dog of Egypt and the Persian greyhound, which ties into the fact that southern Illinois has had the nickname "Little Egypt" for just under 200 years.
Southern Illinois University was a member of the Illinois Intercollegiate Athletic Conference from 1913 to 1962. The school is currently a member of the Missouri Valley Conference in most sports. The football team is a member of the Division I Football Championship Subdivision Missouri Valley Football Conference.
SIU's sports mascot is the Saluki. A Saluki is one of the oldest dog breeds, and is an Egyptian hunting dog similar to a greyhound or whippet. SIU's teams originally competed under the team name "Maroons" from 1913 to 1951. Then the Saluki was chosen as SIU's mascot on March 19, 1951 in part because the southern Illinois region is colloquially known as Little Egypt.
Men's Intercollegiate Sports
Women's Intercollegiate Sports
The school athletics may be best known for the men's basketball program. Success for the Salukis has been recent and historical. SIU has advanced to six consecutive NCAA Tournaments (2002–2007), advancing to two Sweet 16s and accruing an NCAA Tournament record of 5-6 during that time. SIU is also the 1967 NIT Champions led by NBA Hall of Famer Walt Frazier.
Chris Lowery was the coach of the Salukis and led the team to the NCAA tournament every year from the 2004-05 season through the 2006-07 season, where they made an appearance in the Sweet Sixteen. He was let go from the school following the 2011-2012 season. On March 28, 2012, Barry Hinson was named head coach.
SIU competes in the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (formerly known as 1-AA) in the Missouri Valley Football Conference. SIU has been ranked in the Top-20 of the FCS Coaches Poll for 54 straight weeks. The Salukis have won 40 games since 2003, ranking 12th in Division 1 football during that time span. The team is coached by Dale Lennon, who had previous success at the University of North Dakota.
SIU's also had a men's gymnastics team until the program was canceled in 1989. From 1956 until the program was canceled, Bill Meade was the coach of the team. During that time the program turned out 55 NCAA All-Americans and 15 NCAA Individual National Champions while winning four NCAA Division I championships in 1964, 1966, 1967, and 1972. The Men's Gymnastics program also holds the longest winning streak of any SIU program winning 68 consecutive meets from 1961 to 1968.
National Team Championships
As of July 2nd, 2014, Southern Illinois has won 5 Division I and 3 Division II NCAA national championships:
On September 9, 2005, the plans for Saluki Way were unveiled by Chancellor Walter Wendler. The plan called for the construction of a new football stadium, renovation of SIU Arena, a new track and field complex, renovation and new additions of academic buildings, a remodeled Morris Library, and other campus improvements.
SIU Football plays at the new 15,000-seat Saluki Stadium, which replaces McAndrew Stadium. The new stadium was part of the university's larger athletic facilities plan, "Saluki Way," to renovate and restructure the campus athletic facilities.
Saluki Stadium opened on September 2, 2010 when a sellout crowd of 15,200 watched the Salukis defeat Quincy 70-7. The new football stadium is currently named Saluki Stadium. As of right now, no official naming rights that have been sold.
SIU Arena is a 10,000-seat arena on the SIUC campus, it is the home of Saluki men's and women's basketball teams. The arena underwent a renovation as a part of Saluki Way.
The Troutt-Wittmann Academic and Training Center, a state-of-the-art facility to give Saluki athletes the opportunity to gain help with their studies, as well as train and condition, was built with a donation by SIU alumnus and former Saluki football player Thomas Wittmann.
- "Saluki Mascot: What is a Saluki?". Retrieved 07-03 2007. Check date values in:
- Daily Chronicle
- "Southern Illinois Composite Championship Listing". College Football Data Warehouse. 2010. Retrieved January 12, 2011.
- "Bill Meade Memorial to be Held at Shryock Auditorium Saturday.: Former Saluki gymnastics coach passed away last Friday.". November 30, 2004. Retrieved 07-03 2007. Check date values in:
- SIU.edu Saluki Way press release
- Saluki Way
- SIUSalukis.com article regarding Troutt-Wittmann Center