Athletics

Location
Philadelphia, PA
Undergrads
10,324
Tuition
$43,738
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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Reviews

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5 College Sophomore

Athletics: Lots of club options. The varsity athletes work really hard and take it very seriously. It is hard to be a varsity athlete as Penn is a challenging school academically so everyone has a lot of respect for them, juggling grades and training. Penn is very supportive.

3 College Senior

Athletics: Though in Division I, our sports teams don't garner too much attention or spirit from the student body unless you are directly involved or affiliated with someone on the team. I can think of Penn Relays as being one of the biggest sports events held on campus. The football or basketball teams are both just okay. Athletic facilities are amazing, love our gym.

4 College Junior

Athletics: athletic sports especially football makes campus life more exciting and fun!

4 College Senior

Athletics: You have to pay a membership fee if you are a grad student but they have golf and classes

3 College Freshman

Athletics: People lack school spirit for the most part except for particular events.

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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 1107th
    Best Intramural Sports
  • 1163rd
    Most Active Varsity Sports

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Perry Petra-Wong
Hometown
Pasadena, Calif.
Major
Philosophy, Politics, and Economics
View all previous student authors

One thing that sets Penn apart from other Ivy League schools is the pretty intense school spirit of the student body. Students usually support the Varsity teams, many of which are among the best in the league. Home football games are heavily attended, and some basketball fans wait in "the line" overnight to get season tickets for the men's basketball team, which often competes in the NCAA tournament. One important tradition involves frenzied students tearing down the goal posts after a victorious championship football game and throwing them into the Schuylkill River. Penn has had many Ivy League Champion teams including men's soccer, women's volleyball, football, and men's basketball.

Intramural and club sports are participated in relatively widely. Students have the chance to compete in a wide selection of sports. Club sports are taken seriously by those involved, while intramural athletes, while often extremely competitive, tend to have a more laid-back practicing and training schedule. Anyone can start an intramural team simply by recruiting a specified number of people and registering the squad. And it's hard to forget the Penn Relays, the largest track event in the world. This event attracts huge crowds of people from all over the country and top track stars from the nation's high schools, colleges, and even the Olympic team. Penn athletics provides impressive facilities, most noticeably the Pottruck Fitness center, and ample opportunity for absolutely everyone to participate as both an athlete and a spirited fan.

Facts & Statistics

Athletic Association
NCAA
Athletic Division
NCAA Division I-AA
Athletic Conferences
Football: Ivy Group
Basketball: Ivy Group
School Colors
Crimson and navy
School Nickname
Quaker
Men Playing Varsity Sports
572 - 12%
Women Playing Varsity Sports
350 - 7%
Men's Varsity Sports
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Fencing
  • Football
  • Golf
  • Lacrosse
  • Other sports
  • Rowing
  • Soccer
  • Squash
  • Swimming and diving
  • Tennis
  • Track and field
  • Wrestling
Women's Varsity Sports
  • Basketball
  • Fencing
  • Field hockey
  • Golf
  • Gymnastics
  • Lacrosse
  • Rowing
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Squash
  • Swimming and diving
  • Tennis
  • Track and field
  • Volleyball
Club Sports
  • Aikido
  • Badminton
  • Baseball
  • Basketball (women's)
  • Climbing
  • Cricket
  • Curling
  • Cycling
  • Equestrian
  • Field hockey
  • Figure skating
  • Golf
  • Gymnastics
  • Ice hockey (men's, women's)
  • Lacrosse (men's, women's)
  • Ping-pong
  • Roller hockey
  • Rugby (men's, women's)
  • Running
  • Sailing
  • Ski team
  • Soccer (men's and women's)
  • Squash
  • Swimming (coed)
  • Synchronized swimming
  • Tae Kwon Do
  • Tennis (men's, women's)
  • Ultimate Frisbee (men's, women's)
  • Volleyball (men's, women's)
  • Water polo (men's, women's)
Intramurals
  • Basketball
  • Flag football
  • Soccer
  • Tennis
  • Volleyball
Athletic Fields & Facilities
  • Boathouse Row
  • Class of 1923 Ice Rink
  • David Pottruck Health and Fitness Center
  • Franklin Field
  • Hutchinson Gymnasium
  • Levy Tennis Pavilion
  • Lott Tennis Courts
  • Meiklejohn Stadium
  • The Palestra
  • Penn Park
  • Rhodes Field
  • Ringe Squash Courts
  • Robert A. Fox Fitness Center
  • Sheerr Pool
  • Warren Field
  • Weiss Weight Room & Hollenback Weight Room
Most Popular Sports
For an Ivy League school, most of our teams are incredible. One of the best is the basketball team. Season tickets often sell out extremely quickly, and home games always draw high attendance. In recent years, men's basketball is the only Penn sport whose team has reached the NCAA tournament. Additionally, Penn regularly, though not always, finishes first among the Ivy Leagues in basketball. The other most popular sport on campus is probably football. The first game of the season and the Homecoming game usually attract large crowds. However, team spirit is usually lacking beyond these two games. Students often wish that football were a bigger part of student spirit. Soccer, volleyball, tennis, and a slew of other sports are also present at Penn. In fact, Penn's men's soccer team became 2008 Ivy league champions.
Most Overlooked Teams
In fall 2002, men's soccer beat Seton Hall in the NCAA tournament's first round to earn a place as one of the top 20 soccer programs in the country. The team won the Ivy League championship outright last year, proving itself to be just as much, if not more, of a force as its more popular counterparts, basketball and football. With a growing fan base and no signs of slowing down as a emerging power in the near future, hopefully men's soccer will attract the crowd that it deserves.
School Spirit
School spirit is somewhat strong at Penn, especially at sporting events. The pinnacle of students' spirit is shown at the Penn vs. Princeton basketball game, where our long rivalry with the Princeton basketball team is displayed with chants and banners bearing clever anti-Princeton slogans. A popular T-shirt around campus is one that proclaims "Puck Frinceton." Even outside of the basketball season, students can constantly be seen wearing Penn paraphernalia and bringing high school friends by to partake in the Penn experience that students seem to enjoy so thoroughly. Nevertheless, there are those who moan that sports do not play a large enough role in campus life.
Getting Tickets
Many games, including football, are free. Basketball is the most popular sport that requires ticket purchases. Individual tickets are about $5, but avid fans wait on "the line" to get first choice of season tickets at a discounted rate. The facilities for popular sports are big enough that they rarely, if ever, sell out, so you can always show up the night of the game and join in Quaker pride!
Best Place to Take a Walk
The Bio pond
Did You Know?
  • Penn coach John Heisman is the name-sake for the Heisman Trophy.
  • Penn was the first team in the United States to use numbers on its jerseys.
  • Penn played in the first commercially-televised football game.
  • Penn was the first American college campus with an outdoor swimming pool.

Student Polls

How would you describe the athletic facilities?    Based on 55 responses

  • 2% The athletic facilities are relatively subpar for the demands.
  • 20% The athletic facilities are good for athletes, but only mediocre for the average students.
  • 60% Sports are important, and the quality of facilities shows that-for both athletes and non-athletes.
  • 18% The athletic facilities are some of the best in the country.

How popular are intramurals and club sports?    Based on 52 responses

  • 2% Almost no one participates in them.
  • 50% Some people participate in them, but they aren't a big part of campus life.
  • 23% They are overshadowed by varsity sports, but still a big part of campus life.
  • 25% They are just as popular as varsity sports (or even more so).

How popular are varsity sports on campus?    Based on 54 responses

  • 15% No one pays attention to varsity sports.
  • 63% Varsity sporting events are attended, but not a huge part of campus life.
  • 22% Varsity sports are a big part of campus life.
  • 0% Almost everything on campus revolves around them.

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