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North Florida Ospreys
UNF athletics logo.png
Affiliations
University University of North Florida
Division NCAA Division I
Conference Atlantic Sun
General
Nickname Ospreys
Mascot Ozzie
Colors Navy Blue and Grey
Sports 15 (7 men's, 8 women's)
Athletic Director Lee Moon
Location Jacksonville, FL
Homepage UNFOspreys.com
Facilities
Basketball UNF Arena
Baseball Harmon Stadium
Soccer Hodges Stadium
Conference Championships
Golf 2008

The North Florida Ospreys are the athletic teams of the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, Florida. The Ospreys compete in the Atlantic Sun Conference in NCAA Division I. UNF is in its first academic year as a full-fledged member of Division I. Previously, the Ospreys were members of the Sunshine State Conference and Peach Belt Conference in NCAA Division II.

Contents

Overview

Men's sports

Women's sports

The University of North Florida's intercollegiate athletics program began in 1983, originally as a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics. The Ospreys joined NCAA Division II in 1993, the same year the UNF Arena opened. Originally, UNF competed in the Sunshine State Conference, and then in 1997 moved to the Peach Belt Conference. In 2005, the Ospreys began the transition to Division I by competing in the Atlantic Sun Conference. The transition's final year was the 2008-09 season, and UNF will be tournament eligible starting in the 2009-10 season.[1]

Notably, UNF is a non-football school, and students have long desired to see an Osprey football team. However, there are no plans to field a football team in the near future. [2]

Retired Ospreys logo

UNF has won the Sunshine State Conference's all-sports title four times and has won four NAIA national titles—men's golf in 1991 and 1993, and women's tennis in 1986 and 1994. UNF's first Division I conference title came in 2008 when the men's golf team captured the Atlantic Sun crown. [3]

In February 2009, UNF hired Lee Moon to be the new athletic director. He is UNF's sixth athletic director and previously worked at the University of Alabama-Birmingham, University of Wyoming, and Marshall University. Since taking over UNF athletics, he has made many staff changes to move the program forward.[4]

Facilities

UNF's athletic facilities include Hodges Stadium for soccer, Harmon Stadium for baseball, Softball Complex for softball, Hayt Golf Learning Center for golf, Aquatic Center for swimming and diving, and UNF Arena for basketball and women's volleyball.

Future

The move to Division I represented a monumental step towards improving athletics for the future. Facilities upgrades have also been planned. On September 2, 2008 the University announced plans for UNF Varsity Village. The project will cost an estimated $30 million which will provide two new facilities and upgrades to existing facilities. The two new facilities will be a student wellness and sports education center, and a new baseball stadium with a seating capacity of 3,000. The existing stadium, Harmon Stadium will be renovated to include 1,200 seats and used for softball. Other improvements include upgrades to the Arena and Hodges Stadium.[5]

Sports

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Baseball

Notably, the baseball logo is similar to the New York Yankees logo. This logo has brought extra attention to the baseball program since its inception in 1986. [6]

Ospreys baseball logo

UNF Baseball has made significant strides recently in the transition to Division I. In the 2008-2009 season, for the first time the Ospreys defeated four in-state opponents in one season by beating the Florida Gators, Florida State Seminoles, Miami Hurricanes, and South Florida Bulls. Their home games are played at Harmon Stadium. [7] The team has had only one coach since its inception in 1988, Dusty Rhodes.

Team Honors:
NCAA Division II College World Series (3): 2001, 2000. 2005
NAIA World Series (2): 1989, 1991

Basketball

Matthew Driscoll, a former assistant coach at Baylor University is the current and third overall coach of the men's basketball team. He was hired just before UNF's move into Division I play. [8]

Mary Tappmeyer is the head coach of the women's basketball team, and has been since the program's inception in 1992. They made the NCAA Division II Tournament twice, in 2003 and 2004. [9]

Cross Country

The men's cross country team has earned 4 conference titles in Division II, 3 of which came while UNF was in the Sunshine State Conference (1994-1996), and the fourth came in 2000 during their time in the Peach Belt Conference.

The women's cross country team has earned 5 conferences title in Division II, 3 in the Sunshine State Conference (1994-1996), and two in the Peach Belt Conference (2001, 2003).[10]

Golf

The men's golf team earned UNF's first Division I conference title in 2008. They use UNF's on-campus Hayt Golf Learning Center, which has a three hole course and driving range.

Team Honors:
NAIA National Titles (2): 1991, 1993
NCAA Division II Regional Appearances (5): 1999-2002, 2008
NCAA Division II Championship Appearances (1): 2000[11]

Soccer

Soccer match at Hodges Stadium

UNF soccer's home matches are held at Hodges Stadium. As of 2009, men's soccer's all-time record is 149-138[12] and the women's record is 151-88-15.[13]

Softball

Osprey Softball competes at home at the UNF Softball Complex, next to Harmon Stadium. They have a 619-24 all-time record (as of 2009). [14]

Team Honors:
NCAA Division II Tournament Appearances (7): 1999-2005

Swimming & Diving

Women's swimming & diving competes in the Coastal Collegiate Swimming Associaton. [15]

Tennis

Tennis at UNF began in 1984, and the women's team has earned two national championships (1984-85 and 1993-94). Both men's and women's tennis has won seven conference championships each. [16][17]

Track & Field

UNF Track & Field hosted the 2009 Atlantic Sun Conference Championships at Hodges Stadium, the first Division I Conference Championship hosted at UNF.

Volleyball

Women's volleyball at UNF began in 1991, and have an overall record of 401-178 (as of 2008). They play their home games at UNF Arena. [18]

Team Honors:
Peach Belt Conference Championships (8): 1997-2004

Traditions

SunTrust River City Rumble

The Ospreys' most noted rivalry is with cross-town opponent Jacksonville University. The two schools compete in the "SunTrust River City Rumble." The competition keeps a tally of every win for each team for each athletic event between them during the school year. The River City Rumble began in 2005 and the prize is the "SunTrust Old Wooden Barrel" which is housed in the athletic department of that year's winner. Jacksonville University has won the River City Rumble twice, UNF once, and there has been one tie. [19] Another UNF tradition that started in 2005 is "The Flock," a rewards program that gives out prizes for attending athletic events. [20]

"The Swoop" is another UNF tradition, similar in principle to UF's Gator Chomp or FSU's Tomahawk Chop as the recognized gesture to show school spirit. "Swoop" is also an acronym that stands for Students With Outstanding Osprey Pride.

Osprey basketball and baseball games can be heard on WBOB 1320AM in Jacksonville. [21] Sun Sports airs "UNF SportsJam" which recaps athletic events and interviews student athletes.

External links

References

  1. ^ http://www.unf.edu/unfinfo/unf_history/timeline_two.html
  2. ^ http://www.unf.edu/groups/spinnaker/archives/2006/04-19/s1.php
  3. ^ http://www.unfospreys.com/sports/2007/11/14/aboutunf.aspx 2008 Men's Golf Title
  4. ^ http://www.unfspinnaker.com/carousel/2009/02/11/former-uab-athletic-director-takes-vacant-unf-position/
  5. ^ http://www.unfospreys.com/news/2008/9/2/gen_0902080630.aspx
  6. ^ http://www.unfspinnaker.com/carousel/2009/03/04/baseball-logo-brings-fans-together/
  7. ^ http://www.unfospreys.com/news/2009/4/28/BB_0428091418.aspx?path=baseball
  8. ^ http://unfospreys.com/news/2009/4/7/MBB_0407090208.aspx
  9. ^ http://www.unfospreys.com/documents/2008/10/15/2008-09%20UNF%20WBKB%20Quick%20Facts.pdf/
  10. ^ http://unfospreys.com/documents/2008/8/19/08_XC_QuickFacts.pdf
  11. ^ http://unfospreys.com/documents/2008/8/20/2008-09%20Golf%20QuickFacts.pdf
  12. ^ http://www.unfospreys.com/index.aspx?path=msoc&
  13. ^ http://www.unfospreys.com/index.aspx?path=wsoc&
  14. ^ http://unfospreys.com/documents/2009/1/21/2009%20SB%20QuickFacts.pdf
  15. ^ http://www.bigsouthsports.com/fls/4800/CCSASwimming/index2_files/Page308.htm
  16. ^ http://www.unfospreys.com/documents/2009/3/2/2009-WTEN-MediaGuide.pdf?id=408
  17. ^ http://www.unfospreys.com/documents/2009/3/2/2009-MTEN-MediaGuide.pdf?id=407
  18. ^ http://www.unfospreys.com/custompages/2008VBMG/TOC-MediaInfo.pdf
  19. ^ http://www.unfospreys.com/sports/2007/11/2/gen_1102073417.aspx?
  20. ^ http://unfospreys.com/sports/2008/10/31/Flock.aspx?
  21. ^ http://www.1320wbob.com/sports.html

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