Columbia College in Columbia, South Carolina is adding a men’s swimming & diving team in the fall of 2022. The men’s program will join the existing women’s program and will be jointly head coached by Logan Simpson, who is in his 2nd season leading the program.
“It’s always great news when a school adds a men’s swimming program, and I am beyond excited that Columbia College has decided to invest in our sport and create a men’s swimming program,” Simpson said. “Our goal is to build an elite, nationally competitive program that centers around the academic, athletic, and personal success of each student-athlete entrusted to us. To that end, we are on the lookout for swimmers who want to work hard, be great teammates, and help build something special here in Columbia, SC.”
The school, which opened in 1854, only allowed women to live on its campus until this year. For the fall 2021 semester, 65 men moved into Hudson Hall. The school is expected to introduce other men’s sports as part of the transition – they currently list 4 on the school’s website.
The school has a total undergraduate enrollment of 6,170 as of fall 2020.
The men’s swimming program will offer athletic scholarships, in addition to academic aid.
Columbia College competes in the Appalachian Athletic Conference in the NAIA. The conference currently includes 5 men’s teams: Milligan, Point University, St. Andrews, Union, and WVU Tech.
The women’s conference also includes Brenau and Columbia College.
At the most recent NAIA National Championship meet in 2020 (the 2021 meet was canceled by COVID-19), Columbia College sent 5 relays and 1 individual swimmer, though they didn’t come away with any points. The team finished in the top 25 at the NAIA Championships each season from 2015 through 2019.
The team trains out of Greer Natatorium: a 25 yard, 6-lane pool located near the center of the 36 acre campus.
This latest addition is part of an explosion of growth of new collegiate swim programs at the NAIA level.