This summer, Augustana released a statement regarding the rumors of a Division I men’s hockey team. The final sentence of the statement read, “The university plans to share more information later this summer or early fall as more details for the new athletics program are finalized.”
Well, they shared an update.
In a newsletter sent to alumni, Augustana University announced they would be hosting a public announcement of men’s hockey and groundbreaking ceremony on Oct. 5 at 4:30 p.m.
In the latest development of “Viking Bold: The Journey to 2030,” Augustana released a statement that confirmed the plan to add a Division I men’s hockey team.
The statement came on June 16, one day after ESPN anchor John Buccigross tweeted the following: “BIG #cawlidgehawkey NEWS. Sources tell me Augustana University in Sioux Falls, South Dakota is set to ice a Division 1 Men’s Hockey Program beginning in 2023. New On campus rink is part of the plan for the Vikings. Excited for the growing community of Sioux Falls. #Growth”
Augustana released a statement saying, “The university plans to add a men’s hockey program that would compete at the NCAA Division I level. The addition of such a program will be the first of its kind in the state and will be game-changing for Augustana and Sioux Falls as one of just over 60 schools in the country offering Division I men’s hockey.”
According to the statement, T. Denny Sanford, is providing the lead gift to help facilitate the plan. Sanford is a well-known philanthropist, who pledged to donate all of his life savings before he passes.
On June 29, Augustana athletic director Josh Morton tweeted pictures of himself at different collegiate facilities with the caption, “Now that was an efficient day! Always great to see what’s out there with your own [eyes emoji] [smirking face emoji] #CawlidgeHawkey”
Sanford also has a history of donating to collegiate sports programs. In 2009, Sanford made a $6 million donation to help fund Huntington Bank Stadium, formerly known as TCF Bank Stadium, home of the Minnesota Golden Gopher football team.
Sioux Falls is currently home to the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center, a $113 million indoor arena. The PREMIER Center is connected to the Sioux Falls Arena and the Sioux Falls Convention Center and has a maximum capacity of 13,000.
More information on Augustana men’s hockey will be provided after the public announcement.