Endorsed by President Chris Ames, the new teams elevate the total number of Sage’s varsity offerings to 21. Sage added 16 teams between 2008-2020.
“The addition of baseball, esports and women’s golf will fit in well with our growing athletic department,” said Director of Athletics Sandy Augstein-Collins. “These teams have the potential to increase enrollment at Russell Sage College by at least 63 student-athletes. Baseball is the third most popular sport offering for high school males behind basketball and track and field. Women’s golf has seen a 10% increase in participation numbers in the last five years, and esports is increasing exponentially with more than 130 colleges offering esports programs and more than 2,500 student-athletes participating.”
President Ames noted the value student-athletes bring to the college.
“Russell Sage College has been successful in graduating genuine scholar-athletes who excel on and off the field and serve in leadership roles across our two campuses. Growing our athletic programs goes hand in hand with growing the institution as a whole. And the addition of esports complements the importance of video game development to the Capital District’s entrepreneurial economy,” Ames said.
Women’s golf will commence play in the fall of 2021 in the Northeast Women’s Golf Conference and be led by current Sage men’s head golf coach Kevin Cain.
“I am very excited about the addition of women’s golf,“ Cain said. “I look forward to developing a competitive program and helping to grow the game of golf.”
Baseball will commence varsity play as a member of the Empire 8 during the 2021-2022 season. The esports program will begin competitions in the 2021-2022 academic year as a member of the National Association of Collegiate Esports (NACE).
Additionally, Sage has announced that the men’s intercollegiate tennis program will be discontinued at the conclusion of the 2019-2020 academic year.
Sage will hire head coaches a year in advance of competition to begin recruitment of student-athletes for the new programs.
“That plan has worked well for us in the past with several of our new programs winning conference titles and earning NCAA tournament selections,” Augstein-Collins said. “Hiring great coaches that will fit at Sage is the most important thing for us to do right now. We know that with the support of the Sage community, we will build strong programs and provide an excellent Division III student-athlete experience.”
Sage will conduct national searches for head coaches for each program this summer. For more information, go to https://www.sage.edu/about/work-at-russell-sage/.