Eastern Illinois Panthers
The Eastern Illinois Panthers are the intercollegiate athletic programs of Eastern Illinois University (EIU) located in Charleston, Illinois, United States. The Panthers athletic program is a member of the Ohio Valley Conference (OVC) and competes at the NCAA Division I level in the Football Championship Subdivision. EIU's colors are blue and gray. Selected as the team mascot in 1930, EIU's panther was informally known as "Billy" for many years and was officially named "Billy the Panther" in 2008. Panther teams have won five NCAA national championships in three sports. The Panthers also won the 1969 NAIA men's soccer title.
|Eastern Illinois Panthers|
|University||Eastern Illinois University|
|Conference||Ohio Valley Conference|
(Men's soccer, m/w swimming)
|NCAA||Division I (FCS)|
|Athletic director||Tom Michael|
|Varsity teams||20 (10 men's and 10 women's)|
|Football stadium||O’Brien Field|
|Basketball arena||Lantz Arena|
|Baseball stadium||Coaches Stadium at Monier Field|
|Softball stadium||Williams Field|
|Soccer stadium||Lakeside Soccer Field|
|Mascot||Billy the Panther|
|Fight song||Eastern State March|
|Colors||Blue and gray|
Eastern Illinois athletics began in the school's very first year, with the inaugural football team taking the field only three weeks after the first students arrived on campus in 1899.
Eastern Illinois was a member of the Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference from 1912 to 1970. From 1978 to 1982 they were members of the Mid Continent Athletic Association which was absorbed by the Association of Mid-Continent Universities later known as the Mid-Continent Conference now the Summit League till 1996. In 1996 they joined the Ohio Valley Conference which is their current conference.
A member of the Ohio Valley Conference since 1996, Eastern Illinois University sponsors teams in ten men's and ten women's NCAA sanctioned sports. The Panthers' men's soccer team and men's and women's swimming teams compete as associate members of the Summit League since those sports are not sponsored by the OVC.
|Men's sports||Women's sports|
|Soccer||Swimming and diving|
|Swimming and diving||Tennis|
|Tennis||Track and field†|
|Track and field†||Volleyball|
|† – Track and field includes both indoor and outdoor|
- 1973 NCAA Division II World Series Third Place.
- 1978 NCAA Division II World Series Fifth Place.
- 1981 NCAA Division II World Series Runner-Up.
- NAIA Tournament appearances (6) 1947, 1949, 1950, 1952, 1953, 1957. With a combined record of 7–7. Highest finish, 4th: 1957.
- NCAA Division II Tournament appearances each year from 1975 to 1980. Highest finish, 3rd: 1976 and 1978.
- NCAA Division I Tournament appearances (1992 and 2001).
- All time tournament results
|Year||Seed||First Round Winner||First Round Loser|
- NCAA Division I Tournament appearance 1988.
|Year||Seed||First Round Winner||First Round Loser|
Men's cross countryEdit
- 1968 – NCAA College Division National Champions
- 1969 – NCAA College Division National Champions
- 1977 – NCAA Division II National Champions
- 1978 Division II National Champion
- 1980 Division II National Runner-Up.
- NCAA Division I Football Championship tournament appearances: 1982, 1983, 1986, 1989, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012, 2013, 2015.
- Conference Titles: 1912, 1913, 1914, 1928, 1948, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1986, 1995, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2009, 2012, 2013
- All time tournament results
|Year||First Round Home Team||First Round Away Team||Second Round Home||Second Round Away||Quarterfinal Home||Quarterfinal Away|
|1982 OT||Eastern Illinois||16||Jackson State||13||Tennessee State||20||Eastern Illinois||19|
|1983 2OT||Indiana State||16||Eastern Illinois||13|
|1986||Eastern Illinois||28||Murray State||21||Eastern Illinois||22||Eastern Kentucky||24|
|1989||Idaho||21||Eastern Illinois||38||Montana||25||Eastern Illinois||19|
|1995||Stephen F. Austin||34||Eastern Illinois||29|
|1996||Northern Iowa||21||Eastern Illinois||14|
|2001||Eastern Illinois||43||Northern Iowa||49|
|2002||Western Illinois||48||Eastern Illinois||9|
|2005||Eastern Illinois||6||Southern Illinois||21|
|2006||Eastern Illinois||13||Illinois State||24|
|2007||Southern Illinois||30||Eastern Illinois||11|
|2009||Southern Illinois||48||Eastern Illinois||7|
|2012||South Dakota State||58||Eastern Illinois||10|
|2013||Bye||Bye||Eastern Illinois 51||Tennessee State 10||Eastern Illinois||39||Towson||49|
|2015||Northern Iowa||53||Eastern Illinois||17|
- 1969 - NAIA 4th Place
- 1972 - NAIA 8th Place
Individual National Champions:
- 1972 - Gaylord Burrows - NAIA
- 1969 – NAIA National Champion.
- NCAA Division II runners-up in 1979, 3rd in 1978, and 4th in 1974.
- Stripped of 1981 Division I 3rd-place finish.
Men’s swimming and divingEdit
Individual National Champions:
- 1973 - Bob Thomas, NCAA Division II 200 yard backstroke
- 1973 - Bob Thomas, NCAA Division II 400 yard IM
- 1973 - Jon Mayfield, NCAA Division II 200 yard breaststroke
- 1973 - NCAA Division II 400 yard medley (Bob Thomas, Jon Mayfield, Dan Cole, Dave Toler)
- 1974 - Bob Thomas, NCAA Division II 200 yard backstroke
- 1974 - Bob Thomas, NCAA Division II 400 yard IM
- 1974 - Jon Mayfield, NCAA Division II 200 yard breaststroke
- 1974 - NCAA Division II 400 yard medley (Bob Thomas, Jon Mayfield, Brian Forsberg, Dave Toler)
- 1975 - Jon Mayfield, NCAA Division II 200 yard breaststroke
Track and fieldEdit
Team Championships (men's):
- 1974 – NCAA Division II National Champions
- 1976 — NCAA Division II National Runner-up
- 1955 – Ray White, NAIA Long Jump
- 1967 – John Craft, NAIA Triple Jump
- 1969 – John Craft, NCAA College Division Triple Jump
- 1972 – Rodney Jackson, NCAA College Division 400 hurdles
- 1973 – Rodney Jackson, NCAA College Division 400 hurdles
- 1974 – Darrell Brown, NCAA Division II Long Jump
- 1975 – Toni Ababio, NCAA Division II Long Jump
- 1975 – Toni Ababio, NCAA Division II Triple Jump
- 1976 – Ed Hatch, NCAA Division II 400 Meter Dash
- 1979 – Robert Johnson, NCAA Division II 110 hurdles
- 1981 — 4x400 Relay, Women’s Track & Field AIAW II
- 1981 – Augustine Oruwari, NCAA Division II 110 hurdles
- 1988 – Jim Maton, NCAA Division I 800 meter run (Indoor)
- 1992 – Dan Steele, NCAA Division I 400 hurdles
The Eastern Illinois volleyball team has been the Ohio Valley Conference champions in 1998 and co champions in 2004. The volleyball team has made one NCAA Division I Women's Volleyball Tournament appearance in 2001.
Facilities are housed on the west side of the EIU campus between 4th Street and Grant Avenue.
- Coaches Stadium at Monier Field — Baseball
- Darling Courts — Men's and women's tennis
- Lakeside Field — Men's and women's soccer
- Lantz Arena — Men's and women's basketball, Volleyball
- Lantz Field House — Men's and women's indoor track and field
- O’Brien Field — Football, Men's and women's outdoor track and field
- Ray Padovan Pool — Men's and women's swimming and diving
- Tom Woodall Panther Trail — Men's and women's cross country
- Williams Field — Softball
Men's and women's golf practice at four local courses including Charleston Country Club, Mattoon Country Club, Meadowview Golf Course and Bent Tree Golf Course.
- Pemberton Hall — Men’s Basketball
- McAfee Gymnasium — Men’s Basketball
- Schahrer Field — Football (1899–1948)
Club and intramural facilitiesEdit
- Student Rec Center — Intramural sports
Notable former athletesEdit
- Tim Bogar, retired Major League Baseball infielder
- Zach Borenstein (born 1990), baseball outfielder
- Randy Myers, former American Major League Baseball pitcher with the New York Mets, Cincinnati Reds, San Diego Padres, Chicago Cubs, Baltimore Orioles and the Toronto Blue Jays between 1985 and 1998. 4x MLB All-Star.
- Marty Pattin, former MLB baseball pitcher for the California Angels, Seattle Pilots, Milwaukee Brewers, Boston Red Sox, and Kansas City Royals
- Stan Royer, MLB baseball player for the St. Louis Cardinals and Boston Red Sox
- Kevin Seitzer, retired all-star Major League Baseball player
- Henry Domercant, former professional basketball player in Europe
- Kevin Duckworth, former NBA All-Star forward
- Kyle Hill, former professional basketball player in Europe
- Jay Taylor, former NBA player for the New Jersey Nets
- Brad Childress, former head coach of the Minnesota Vikings
- Jimmy Garoppolo, quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers
- Jeff Gossett, former NFL punter for the LA/Oakland Raiders and 3 other NFL teams
- Kamu Grugier-Hill, linebacker for the Miami Dolphins
- Alexander Hollins, wide receiver for the Minnesota Vikings
- John Jurkovic, former NFL Defensive tackle for the Green Bay Packers and Jacksonville Jaguars
- Tim Kelly offensive coordinator for the Houston Texans
- Ray McElroy, former NFL Cornerback for the Indianapolis Colts and Chicago Bears
- Sean Payton, head coach of the New Orleans Saints and winner of Super Bowl XLIV
- Ted Petersen, retired NFL Offensive/Defensive tackle for the Pittsburgh Steelers, Cleveland Browns, and Indianapolis Colts
- Tony Romo, former quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys and now a sportscaster
- Micah Rucker, former wide receiver for the Pittsburgh Steelers, Kansas City Chiefs, and New York Giants; also played in the Arena Football League
- Mike Shanahan, former head coach of the Los Angeles Raiders, Denver Broncos and Washington Redskins and 3 times Super Bowl winner.
- Chris Szarka, retired Canadian Football League fullback
- Pierre Walters, former NFL linebacker for the Kansas City Chiefs
- Matt Hughes, 2x NCAA All-American wrestler, former UFC Welterweight Champion
- Kenny Robertson, 4x NCAA Division I qualifier for wrestling; current mixed martial artist for the UFC
- Mike Russow, current mixed martial artist
- Matt Veach, current mixed martial artist
- Schellas Hyndman, former head coach of soccer's FC Dallas
- Matt Bobo, former North American Soccer League player
- John Baretta, former North American Soccer League goalkeeper
- George Gorleku, former Major Indoor Soccer League (1978–92) player
- LeBaron Hollimon, former National Professional Soccer League (1984–2001) player
- Damien Kelly, former National Professional Soccer League (1984–2001) player
- Mark Simpson, former goalkeeper and assistant coach for D.C. United
- Jason Thompson, former player for D.C. United
- Glen Tourville, former Major Indoor Soccer League (1978–92) player
- John Craft, placed 5th in the Men’s triple jump at the 1972 Summer Olympics
- Sandy Osei-Agyemang, advanced to the second round in the Men's 100 metres and Men's 4 × 100 metres relay at the 1972 Summer Olympics
- Dan Steele, track All-American, 400-meter National Champion, and Bronze Medalist at the 2002 Winter Olympics
- Darrin Steele, competed at the 1998 Winter Olympics and the 2002 Winter Olympics
- "Eastern Illinois University Panthers - Media Relations". October 15, 2015. Retrieved October 6, 2016.
- "OVC Member Institutions". Ohio Valley Conference. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "Eastern Illinois University". NCAA. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "EIU Panther Mascot". Eastern Illinois University Athletics. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "EIU National Championships". Eastern Illinois University Athletics. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "Men's Soccer Championship Records" (PDF). National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "History". Eastern Illinois University Athletics. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "FB_familyweekend_2014". Retrieved 19 September 2014.
- "Eastern Illinois Panthers - Turn Back the Clock Tuesday - May 16, 1981". Retrieved 19 September 2014.
-  Archived September 30, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
- "Eastern Illinois Panther Football : Panthers - Salukis Meet For Third Time In Five Years EIU Opens FCS Plays At Southern Illinois" (PDF). Eiupanthers.com. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
-  Archived September 22, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
- "Eastern Illinois Men's Golf Record Book" (PDF). Retrieved April 30, 2019.
- "EIU Individual National Champions". Retrieved April 30, 2019.
- "EIU Women's Soccer Record Book" (PDF). p. 4. Retrieved April 30, 2019.
- Plummer, William; Floyd, Larry C. (2013). A Series Of Their Own: History Of The Women's College World Series. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States: Turnkey Communications Inc. ISBN 978-0-9893007-0-4.
- "EIU National Championships". Retrieved April 30, 2019.
- "EIU Volleyball Record Book" (PDF). p. 57. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
- "Eastern Illinois Athletic Facilities" (PDF). Eastern Illinois Panthers. p. 3. Retrieved 15 March 2019.
- "Eastern Illinois Facilities". Eastern Illinois Panthers. Retrieved 15 March 2019.
- "Buildings and Grounds of EIU". Eastern Illinois University. p. 35. Retrieved 15 March 2019.
- "Nostalgia Surrounds O'Brien" (PDF). Eastern Illinois University. Retrieved 16 March 2019.
- "Stan Royer". Baseball Reference.com. Retrieved 3 October 2013.
- "Kevin Seitzer". Baseball Reference.com. Retrieved 3 October 2013.
- Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill; et al. "Tim Dykstra". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on April 18, 2020. Retrieved July 16, 2012.
- "Schellas Hyndman". Southern Methodist University. Retrieved October 3, 2013.
- "Dan Steel". Journal Gazette and Times-Courier. Retrieved 3 October 2013.
- Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill; et al. "Darrin Steele Olympic Results". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on April 17, 2020. Retrieved April 30, 2018.