SHERMAN, Texas – The Austin College athletics department will add two new teams next year, with the addition of men's and women's water polo to Kangaroo athletics. The teams will compete as a club in 2017-18, with the intent to become an NCAA varsity program in 2018-19.
"After considering a variety of programs across the college including athletics, water polo seemed to be an appropriate fit for us," said athletics director David Norman. "As one of the fastest growing sports at the high school level, we look forward to bringing water polo back at the NCAA level in Texas."
The addition of men's and women's water polo will bring Austin College's total number of athletics programs to 18, having added men's and women's cross country, and men's and women's distance track in recent years. Austin College will become the first NCAA Division III school in Texas to offer varsity water polo programs, and the first at any level in the state since Texas A&M in 1976.
Austin College will also become the 15th varsity Division III men's program in the nation, and the 19th varsity women's program at the Division III level. The collegiate water polo season takes place in the spring, with the Collegiate Water Polo Association championships held in April.
The athletics department is currently developing a schedule and looking into conference affiliation, and have begun a national search for a head coach for both programs.