The University of Virginia athletics department welcomes men’s and women’s squash as varsity sports programs, director of athletics Craig Littlepage announced on June 30. Virginia athletics now boasts 27 varsity sports, including 14 women’s teams and 13 men’s teams.
“We are committed to providing intercollegiate athletics opportunities for UVA students where it makes sense and are excited to add men’s and women’s squash as varsity sport programs,” Littlepage said. “The athletics department is grateful for the support of a generous donor to the University and we appreciate the collaboration of a number of partners across the University to make this possible.”
“We are thankful for the generous gift of a donor to elevate squash to varsity status at the University,” said University of Virginia president Teresa A. Sullivan. “Squash is a challenging sport that requires a great deal of physical fitness and it’s a lifelong competitive pursuit for many, particularly in our area. The high usage rate of the courts at the McArthur Squash Center is just one sign of the popularity of the sport in our community. We are thrilled to support squash at the highest possible level and look forward to attracting even more terrific varsity student-athletes to Grounds.”
While not sponsored by the NCAA, Intercollegiate squash is governed by the Collegiate Squash Association. UVA is the first Power 5 school to sponsor men’s varsity squash. Virginia joins Stanford as the only Power 5 schools to sponsor women’s squash.
Mark Allen, who has led the club squash programs since 2013, is head coach of the men’s and women’s varsity squads and will be joined by assistant Grant White.
Click here for Virginia Sports’ full press release, which includes a primer on the sport of squash as well as links to the head coach’s bio, team bios, the 2017/2018 schedule, and a look at the McArthur Squash Center. Jeff White of VirginiaSports.com has posted this feature, which is an in-depth look at the program.