UPDATE: 8/17/2020 at 7:30 p.m. BLUEFIED, WV (WVNS) — For the first time since 1980, Bluefield State College will be hitting the gridiron. On Saturday, Aug. 15, 2020, the College announced it is adding 12 new sports teams, including football, to back the Big Blue’s 10 existing programs.
Interim Director of Athletics, Derrick Price, said the additions will bring 250 new student athletes to campus.
“Not just getting them here, but keeping them here,” Price said. “We don’t want them to just play here for just the one stop shop, this is not just a revolving door once you come here. You’rw going to commit to excellence to on and off the court here at Bluefield State College.”
With football and wrestling for the men, women can now play soccer, golf, acrobatics and tumbling, and bowling. Men and women will be able to swim and compete in both indoor and outdoor track and field
For the only Historically Black College in southern West Virginia, Price said he looks forward to recruiting and keeping kids local.
“Just to be able to get a chance and serve and get a degree from a HBCU, that means a lot. That means a lot,” Price said. “And those are the kids that we want to be able to bring in here and hopefully we will be able to bring more. But not just that we just want to have great athletes, we just want to have great student to come in here and do what they are suppose to do.”
Price said since the announcement, everyone is excited about what the future holds for Bluefield State College.
“We’re planning on life after COVID. That’s one thing we want to do. It’s here now, but I don’t think it’s going to stay here and when it goes, you’ll have Bluefield State right there ready to go,” Price said.
Bluefield, WV (WVNS)– Eleven new sports will be added to the Bluefield State College Athletics Department for the 2021-2022 school year. The college made the announcement on Saturday, August 15, 2020.
These will join the ten existing sports to become a robust program for more than 400 student-athletes.
Leading the way is the return of Division II football, for the first time since 1980.
Bluefield State President Robin Capehart said, “Fielding a football team after such a long absence is a huge step forward. To do this now is our way of saying there is life after COVID for this College and our community.”
Interim Director of Athletics Derrick Price added, “We’re hiring for these new sports now. I’m prioritizing coaches with proven abilities to recruit. We will target good student athletes with the goal of being competitive immediately.”
In addition to football, Bluefield State will compete in the following new sports:
· Women’s soccer
· Women’s golf
· Women’s acrobatics and tumbling
· Women’s swimming
· Women’s bowling
· Women’s indoor track and field
· Women’s outdoor track and field
· Men’s indoor track and field
· Men’s outdoor track and field
· Men’s swimming
It’s expected that these sports will attract more than 250 new students to campus. They will join the nearly 150 student-athletes enrolled currently.
Full and partial scholarships will be available.
Bluefield State currently competes in Men’s baseball, basketball, cross country, golf and tennis. Also, in Women’s softball, basketball, cross country, volleyball and tennis.
“Expanding our athletics program is integral to the goals we set shortly after coming to Bluefield State,” Capehart said.
“Our first priority remains attracting more students. As an HBCU, we have an obligation to recruiting more African American students. We have done that.
“We changed the name of our Library to honor an African American alumnus who went on to a highly distinguished career in the State Department.
“We are returning to a residential campus for the first time in 52 years with the start of construction on our Heritage Village residence halls.
“Adding these sports will increase opportunities for more students and add a vibrancy that we’ve lacked for too long. It also strengthens our relationships in the community as we partner on the use of various facilities.”
Interim Director Price added, “Making this commitment to these young people also means making a commitment to doing all the things that go with a full-bore athletics program: new and improved facilities, upgraded training, residences and meals. It also means working with the Provost and Deans so that our athletes have a tremendous academic experience as well.
“Bluefield State has a proud sports tradition, including two national football championships. I feel blessed to be here now and help write a new chapter to our story.”
- How to vote by absentee ballot in West Virginia
- The first U.S. Presidential Debate kicks off tonight
- Toys For Tots taking applications ahead of holiday season
- Meadow Bridge seniors discuss voting for first time
- Rainelle community members say lack of police presence creates feeling of unrest