Augustana College will add varsity women’s and men’s water polo to their athletic offerings beginning in the fall of 2021. The Rock Island, Illinois school announced the decision on Tuesday after having hinted at the prospect for over a year. A search for a head water polo coach will begin “in the very near future,” according to Vikings’ Athletic Director Mike Zapolski.
In the school’s Tuesday press release Zapolski added, “[i]nternal conversations about the possibility of adding men’s and women’s water polo as varsity sports began in earnest more than two years ago when the administration imagined the possibility of building a new, multi-use facility that would include both an academic and athletic component… The plan for a larger pool not only allows for the expansion of our men’s and women’s swimming rosters, but the addition of two new sports that will help Augustana in its overall enrollment efforts.”
Zapolski, former Sports Information Director at Pepperdine, will look for a single head coach to lead both the men’s and women’s teams as they do for tennis and swimming.
The NCAA Division III Vikings will join Monmouth College, which established its varsity men’s and women’s program in 2013, as the only varsity programs in Illinois.