Department of Athletics Mission Statement
The Department of Athletics provides intercollegiate, intramural and recreational opportunities for students. Through these opportunities students achieve educational and personal fulfillment, life skills, character development and campus pride.
History of Grenadier Athletics
The IU Southeast intercollegiate athletic program may be traced to the late 1960's with beginnings that could be called extramural. Teams representing IU Southeast, mostly men's basketball, played in various city recreational leagues and against independent teams, industrial teams, and some local business colleges. There were some attempts to form a baseball team and play that kind of competition, but opponents were difficult to find.
In the early 70's, the men's basketball team settled into schedules against junior colleges, some four year schools, and business colleges. The 1971-72 men's schedule was composed of mostly four year degree granting institutions. This team is considered to be the first intercollegiate team in at IU Southeast. From that point on, the schedules became fully intercollegiate. Also, in the early 70's, men's golf and tennis teams were formed and women's basketball started in much the same fashion as the men's program began. Each of these sports played at least some four year schools from 1972-73 on. During the 70's and early 80's, IU Southeast had, at one period or another, teams in men's and women's basketball, baseball, women's volleyball, men's soccer, men's golf, men's and women's tennis and men's and women's cross country.
In the 1971-72 year, Grenadiers was adopted as the official school nickname. Prior to that, IU Southeast teams were known as the Cougars. The term Grenadier refers to an elite British Regiment. Some veterans of this regiment may have settled on the present site of the IU Southeast campus. In 1971-72, the school also adopted the colors red, white and blue. A task force recommended these colors because they were similar to IUB's cream and crimson and yet distinctive by the inclusion of navy blue. The task force also noted that the colors are the colors of the national flag. In 1971-72, the Grenadier Club was organized as a booster organization. In December of 2006, the Board of Trustees voted to adopt the IU Integrated Image Study which changed the official IU Southeast school colors to Crimson and Cream.
The women's programs became the institution's first "accredited" athletic program when they became affiliated with the AIAW (Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for Women) in 1975-76. In that same year, there was an attempt to affiliate IU Southeast with the NCAA's Division III. IU Bloomington did not approve this, however, on the grounds that only one IU campus could be affiliated with the NCAA. Thus, steps were initiated to affiliate with the NAIA. These efforts culminated with active membership being attained in 1978. In 1982, the AIAW folded and the NAIA added women's programs to the organization.
Some other historical notes include the completion of the Activities Building in time for the 1979-80 season. The facility has a capacity of 1,624.
Beginning in the 1994-95 school year, IU Southeast joined the Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (KIAC) after competing for many years in District 21. The KIAC is one of the oldest athletics conferences in the country and began its intercollegiate governance in 1916.
In 2006, IU Southeast added women's fast pitch softball as a varsity intercollegiate sport. Currently IU Southeast offers seven intercollegiate varsity sports: Men's and Women's Basketball, Men's and Women's Tennis, Volleyball, Baseball and Softball. The Grenadier athletic department also fields Cheerleading and Dance as student organizations.
In 2008, IU Southeast purchased a professional mascot costume to help promote school spirit and to increase branding opportunities in the community.The students of IU Southeast voted toname the new mascot "GUS." Gus Grenadier now serves as the official mascot of IU Southeast Athletics.
IU Southeast Directors of Athletics:
- Jim Morris 1975-1999
- Ernie Neal - 2000
- Interim appointment - Baseball Coach Rick Parr – 2001
- Interim appointment – Men's Basketball Coach Walt Corbean - 2002
- Pat Mrozowski 2002-2009
- Joe Glover 2010-Present
Ground Breaking Ceremony for Activites Building in New Albany