La Salle Explorers
The La Salle Explorers are the varsity sports teams from La Salle University in Philadelphia. The Explorers compete in Division I of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) as members of the Atlantic 10 Conference. The men's and women's basketball teams are also participate in the Philadelphia Big 5. On June 3rd, 2019, Brian Baptiste was named Director of Athletics and Recreation effective August 1, 2019. Baptiste currently serves as Deputy AD for Capital Projects and Operations at Northwestern University.
|La Salle Explorers|
|University||La Salle University|
|Athletic director||Bill Bradshaw Brian Baptiste (August 1, 2019)|
|Basketball arena||Tom Gola Arena|
|Baseball stadium||Hank DeVincent Field|
|Soccer stadium||McCarthy Stadium|
|Fight song||Fight On, Explorers|
|Colors||Blue and Gold|
The Explorers name
The Explorers nickname derives from a famous mistake made by a local Philadelphia sportswriter. The writer thought the university was named after the French explorer Sieur de La Salle, when in fact it is named after St. Jean-Baptiste de la Salle. The nickname caught on, however, and has remained ever since.
La Salle's major historic rival has been the Hawks of the Saint Joseph's University, especially in men's basketball. Not only are both schools situated in Philadelphia, but they are also both Catholic, private institutions and are both members of both the Atlantic 10 and the Big 5.
The school also won the 1952 National Invitation Tournament when that tournament was still considered to be on a par with the NCAA tournament.
|Swimming & Diving|
|Track & Field (Indoor and Outdoor)|
A member of the Atlantic 10 Conference, La Salle University sponsors teams in 10 men's and 14 women's NCAA sanctioned sports, plus one men's sport that is not recognized by the NCAA. The most recently added varsity sports are women's golf and men's and women's water polo, all added for 2016–17.
The men's basketball team has won eight City Championships (four were shared). In addition to the National Championship and NIT Championship, La Salle was also a national finalist in the 1955 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament and was named the 53rd "Greatest College Basketball Program of All-Time" by Street & Smith's in January 2005.
Only Duke (7) and UCLA (4) have had more National Players of the Year than La Salle, which has had three--- Lionel Simmons, Michael Brooks, and Tom Gola. Tom Gola was listed on "ESPN's Countdown to the Greatest" College basketball players as #17.
The women's basketball team began play in the 1972–73 season, and has been to the NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Tournament 5 times.
Professional sports alumni
- La Salle Logo Acceptable Color Breaks and Basic Guidelines (PDF). Retrieved June 2, 2016.
- "La Salle Adds Men's And Women's Water Polo, Women's Golf As Varsity Sports" (Press release). La Salle Explorers. December 7, 2015. Retrieved July 16, 2016.