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SACRAMENTO, Calif. –  Sacramento State Athletics has launched a year-long celebration of its 25th anniversary of competing at the Div. I level and the department has released a logo to commemorate the occasion.

During the academic year, fans will see the integration of celebration elements into game uniforms, digital and social media, and fundraising components. Each sport will display the 25-Year logo in some fashion, which includes helmet stickers and patches on jerseys, t-shirts, warmups and hats.

“Twenty-five years of competing at the Division I level is a significant milestone for Sacramento State Athletics,” Associate Athletic Director for External Affairs Markus Jennings said. “We feel that it is very important, as a department, to celebrate this milestone as we continue to engage the city of Sacramento and the region.”

Sacramento State Athletics first competed in intercollegiate athletics during the 1948-49 academic year, and spent the next 40-plus years competing primarily at the Div. II level (some sports competed at the Div. III level). Prior to making the transition to Div. I, Sacramento State won four national championships, including three titles in 1981. Volleyball won back-to-back national championships in 1980 and 1981, while both softball and women’s golf won the national title in 1981. The program also accounted for eight national runner-up finishes, most recently in 1989 when both softball and volleyball accomplished the feat.

“We want our alumni and community members to come to Sacramento State and see how the campus has transformed,” Director of Athletics Bill Macriss said. “We have incredible student-athletes who compete and succeed at a very high level. We are excited to celebrate the past 25 years of Division I status and the success we have achieved.”

The transition to Div. I competition took place over a three-year span (1990-93), with the majority of Sacramento State’s athletics teams making the jump during the 1991-92 academic year. Softball and baseball were the first programs to join Div. I in 1990, and football was the last in 1993.

The Hornets have won a combined 75 conference championships at the Div. I level, including 64 over the last 14 years. The 75 conference crowns includes 62 Big Sky titles, seven Mountain Pacific Sports Federation championships, four Western Athletic Conference titles and two America Sky crowns.

In addition, the Hornets captured the Big Sky Conference Women’s All-Sports trophy for the second consecutive year (and sixth time in the last nine years) during the 2015-16 athletic season. Overall, combining the men’s and women’s points, Sacramento State has finished among the top three Big Sky schools in the all-sports competition seven consecutive years.

The Hornets’ success has not been limited to just the field of play, but in the classroom as well. The 442 Hornet student-athletes set the department record with a 3.049 term grade point average during the 2016 spring semester and also set a new mark with a 3.086 overall GPA. That marked the fourth consecutive semester in which the student-athletes have set record marks in both categories (term and overall GPA).

The 25 Years of Division I Competition campaign places an emphasis on returning alumni and community members to campus, and many Hornet teams will designate a home contest to celebrate their Div. I history. The celebration will culminate during the 2017 Hornet football season (Football’s 25-year anniversary will be next year).

25-year celebration home games (fall sports)

Men’s Soccer: Oct. 8 vs. UC Riverside, 3 p.m.
Women’s Soccer: Oct. 21 vs. Weber State, 3:30 p.m.
Volleyball: Nov. 5 vs. Portland State, 7 p.m.
Football: Date TBA (a game in 2017)