Reinhardt University will explore expanding its athletic offerings by the addition of intercollegiate football, President Dr. J. Thomas Isherwood has announced. In the coming weeks, Isherwood will ask a group of students, faculty, staff, trustees and community members to come together as a committee to examine the issues involved in forming a football program.
“I do believe this exploration is appropriate for us at this time,” Isherwood said. “It is important for the continued growth and stability of Reinhardt to reach its strategic goal of 1,000 traditional students attending the Waleska campus by 2015. Other schools of our size and ability have recently added football successfully.”
Isherwood will ask the committee to ensure that their findings are the result of an open and comprehensive dialog and that information is available to the University’s trustees so that they can make their decision during the meeting of the board in May 2011.
“This is an exciting time for Reinhardt athletics as we begin to study the feasibility of football here at the University,” Athletic Director and Head Baseball Coach Bill Popp said. “I think the opportunity to have football here at Reinhardt would create feelings of unity and pride not only for the University, but also for the surrounding community as well. I am excited to even think about the future possibilities of a college football team representing the Eagles of Reinhardt University.”
Reinhardt currently supports 15 sports programs, eight for women and seven for men, plus a coed cheerleading squad. All 16 programs offer athletic aid to qualified student-athletes, and the majority of Reinhardt’s teams compete as members of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and the Appalachian Athletic Conference (AAC). This season, there are 92 institutions that compete in football at the NAIA level.
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