The Samford athletic program set a school record during the 2022-23 season with 10 Southern Conference championships and could add one more this weekend in baseball.
Samford's women's soccer team won regular season and tournament championships. Other conference championships for the Bulldogs came in women's volleyball, football, men's and women's indoor track and field, men's and women's outdoor track and field, men's basketball and baseball. The baseball team, which clinched the regular season title, is the top seed in the SoCon Tournament, with their first game scheduled for Thursday.
Samford track and field coach Rod Tiffin has won 15 SoCon championships in his tenure, and soccer coach Todd Yelton's program has won at least a share of nine consecutive SoCon championships. The volleyball program has won five of the past seven conference titles under Keylor Chan.
They had a bunch of championship company within the Samford athletic program this season.
"Well, it's been a lot of fun," said Samford athletic director Martin Newton. "It's a lot more fun to win than lose, right. That's why we're in this business. That's why they have a scoreboard. What a kind of magical year. We got started off right in the fall with football and volleyball and soccer. I think we were one of the only Division I schools in the country that had all three of those sports that won championships. That was a great way to start the year and the momentum just kept going."
Newton said winning throughout is what makes it special.
"There's a lot of schools that are good in two or three sports," Newton said. "But, our goal, is to always be excellent across the board in every sport. That fits right into the branding of this university, from an academic standpoint, from a Christian mission. Everything we do, we want to try to be excellent. Quite frankly, we've had a heckuva decade. We're the winningest program in the Southern Conference the last decade."
The university is also investing in the future of the athletic program. Ground was recently broken to begin building and renovating Seibert Gymnasium. The $65 million project includes a recreation center for Samford students, training facilities and offices for the athletic department and a practice facility for men's and women's basketball and volleyball.
"We're completing renovating Seibert Gymnasium and we're adding an annex on the back of that building," Newton said. "It's a huge project, that should be ready fall of 2024. It's going to be incredible for what it does for our students, faculty and staff. It's state of the art. You won't even recognize Seibert Gymnasium. The new annex will close in the football stadium and make a neat atmosphere and the practice facility is going to pay huge dividends."
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