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3 Recent Alumnus

Athletics: Sports are a huge focus at Swarthmore. Aside from Varsity athletes, most students are not deeply involved or interested in varsity sports.

3 College Senior

Athletics: It's not a big part of campus life, and I have only been to two or three sports events in my time here. The exercise facilities are quite nice for regular students, but the main gym is really old.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Athletics: Being a student-athlete is a lot of work but provides a academic balance that other students might have more difficulty getting. Coaches are flexible and know that academics always come first, and professors are willing to work around athletic commitments as long as they're clearly communicated.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Athletics: Overall school spirit is positive but the only fans that will cheer on games are good friends of the athletes. Our new gym, build in 2015, is great.

3 College Freshman

Athletics: Swatties prioritize academics, but athletes tend to balance both academics and sports. I love how at Swarthmore, there is no divide between athletes and non-athletes. Also, most club sports are welcoming to those who have no prior experience in the sport.


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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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At Swarthmore, sports almost always take a backseat to academics. However, approximately 60 percent of the student population is involved in athletics of some type, and although the administration does not give excessive funding to athletics, it, along with the faculty, does support the teams. The lack of spirit for Swarthmore’s teams is not just the student body’s fault, though. The teams tend to lose frequently and badly. The few exceptions are the men’s and women’s tennis teams, which consistently win conference titles, and the rugby and ultimate Frisbee teams, which have a cult-like following. Also, the soccer team has recently been winning conference titles and making national appearances. What about football, you ask? Well, the program at Swat was discontinued, along with wrestling, much to the dismay of some students. Rumor has it that the administration cancelled funding for the sports because of the overall violent nature of the Quakers. Another rumor is that Swarthmore football had too much success and the public started to think Swarthmore was more about a successful football program than a prestigious academic school, so the administration cut the football program.

Fortunately, Swat does offer an array of IM, varsity, and club teams that are generally accepting of even the least athletically inclined Swatties. Also, the athletic facilities, although often criticized, aren’t that bad. There are more than enough tennis courts, a new outdoor track, and a decent gym. Generally, sports at Swarthmore aren’t about winning; they’re about playing the game, which can be a good thing for those who break a sweat merely from playing beer pong.

Facts & Statistics

Athletic Association
  • NAA
  • NCAA
Athletic Division
NCAA Division III (without football)
Athletic Conferences
Football: N/A
Basketball: Centennial Conference
School Colors
Garnet and gray
School Nickname
The Garnet
Men Playing Varsity Sports
202 - 27%
Women Playing Varsity Sports
171 - 22%
Men's Varsity Sports
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Golf
  • Lacrosse
  • Soccer
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track and field
Women's Varsity Sports
  • Badminton
  • Basketball
  • Field hockey
  • Lacrosse
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track and field
  • Volleyball
Club Sports
  • Fencing (men's, women's)
  • Rugby (men's, women's)
  • Squash
  • Ultimate Frisbee (men's, women's)
  • Volleyball (men's)
  • Basketball
  • Soccer
Athletic Fields & Facilities
  • Clothier Baseball Field
  • Clothier Field Stadium
  • Clothier Softball Field
  • Cunningham Complex
  • Cunningham Fields
  • Faulkner Courts
  • Lamb-Miller Field House
  • Mullan Indoor Tennis and Fitness Center
  • Skallerup Track
  • Tarble Pavilion
  • Ware Pool
Most Popular Sports
Basketball, tennis, and soccer have the widest appeal on campus, but ultimate Frisbee and rugby have their share of dedicated players and fans.
Most Overlooked Teams
The most overlooked varsity teams are probably lacrosse and volleyball. The most overlooked club teams are squash and fencing.
School Spirit
Everyone has Garnet/Phoenix pride, but whether students show it is the question. You won't find many die-hard fans making noise at every home game for any sport, but the students who do go to games go frequently.
Getting Tickets
Admission is free, and there are rarely many spectators, but attendance has increased over the years.
Best Place to Take a Walk
Crum Woods, 220 acres of forest and trails adjacent to campus

Student Polls

How popular are varsity sports on campus?    Based on 27 responses

  • 0% Almost everything on campus revolves around them.
  • 11% Varsity sports are a big part of campus life.
  • 78% Varsity sporting events are attended, but not a huge part of campus life.
  • 11% No one pays attention to varsity sports.

How popular are intramurals and club sports?    Based on 26 responses

  • 19% They are just as popular as varsity sports (or even more so).
  • 38% They are overshadowed by varsity sports, but still a big part of campus life.
  • 42% Some people participate in them, but they aren't a big part of campus life.
  • 0% Almost no one participates in them.

How would you describe the athletic facilities?    Based on 23 responses

  • 4% The athletic facilities are some of the best in the country.
  • 43% Sports are important, and the quality of facilities shows that-for both athletes and non-athletes.
  • 26% The athletic facilities are good for athletes, but only mediocre for the average students.
  • 26% The athletic facilities are relatively subpar for the demands.
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