Eastern Illinois Panthers

Eastern Illinois Panthers
University Eastern Illinois University
Conference Ohio Valley Conference
NCAA Division I
Athletic director Tom Michael
Location Charleston, Illinois
Varsity teams 9 men's and 10 women's
Football stadium O'Brien Stadium
Basketball arena Lantz Arena
Baseball stadium Coaches Stadium at Monier Field
Mascot Billy the Panther
Nickname Panthers
Colors Blue and Gray[1]
Website www.eiupanthers.com

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)[2] and competes at the NCAA Division I[3] level including 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.[4] Panther teams have won five NCAA national championships in three sports.[5] The Panthers also won the 1969 NAIA men's soccer title.[6]


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.[7]

A member of the Ohio Valley Conference, Eastern Illinois University sponsors teams in ten men's and eleven women's NCAA sanctioned sports:[8]

Men's Intercollegiate Sports Team article Head Coach Women's Intercollegiate Sports Team article Head Coach
Baseball Jason Anderson Basketball Debbie Black
Basketball Panthers men's basketball Jay Spoonhour Cross Country Erin Howarth
Cross Country Erin Howarth Golf Mike Moncel
Football Panthers football Kim Dameron Rugby [v 1] Frank Graziano
Golf Mike Moncel Soccer Jason Cherry
Soccer [v 2] Panthers men's soccer Kiki Lara Softball Angie Nicholson
Swimming & Diving [v 2] Jacqueline Michalski Swimming & Diving [v 2] Jacqueline Michalski
Tennis Sam Kercheval Tennis Emily Wang
Track & Field (Indoor & Outdoor) Tom Akers Track & Field (Indoor & Outdoor) Tom Akers
Volleyball Samantha Wolinski
  1. Rugby is an NCAA "emerging sport" which is fully sanctioned, but does not yet have a national championship.[9] Eastern Illinois competes as an independent.
  2. 1 2 3 The men's soccer team and the men's and women's swimming teams compete as associate members of The Summit League

Sports Highlights


Men's basketball

Year Seed First Round Winner First Round Loser
1992 15 Indiana 94 Eastern Illinois 55
2001 15 Arizona 101 Eastern Illinois 76


Year First Round Home Team First Round Away Team Quarterfinal Home Quarterfinal Away
1982 OT Eastern Illinois 16 Jackson State 13 Tennessee State20Eastern 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 25Eastern Illinois 19
1995 Stephen F. Austin 34 Eastern Illinois 29
1996 Northern Iowa 21 Eastern Illinois 14
2000 Montana 45 Eastern Illinois 13
2001 Eastern Illinois 43 Northern Iowa 49
2002 Western Illinois 48 Eastern Illinois 9
2005 Eastern Illinois 6 Southern Illinois 21
2006[13] Eastern Illinois 13 Illinois State 24
2007 Southern Illinois 30 Eastern Illinois 11
2009 Southern Illinois 48 Eastern Illinois 7

Men's soccer

Men's cross country

Team Championships:

Men's track and field

See also: Track and field

Team Championships (men's):

Individual Champions:


The Panther softball team has appeared in two Women's College World Series, in 1971 and 1974.[14]

Notable former athletes


  1. "Eastern Illinois University Panthers - Media Relations". 2015-10-15. Retrieved 2016-10-06.
  2. "OVC Member Institutions". Ohio Valley Conference. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
  3. "Eastern Illinois University". NCAA. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
  4. "EIU Panther Mascot". Eastern Illinois University Athletics. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
  5. "EIU National Championships". Eastern Illinois University Athletics. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
  6. "Men's Soccer Championship Records" (PDF). National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
  7. "History". Eastern Illinois University Athletics. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
  8. "FB_familyweekend_2014". Retrieved 19 September 2014.
  9. "NCAA Sports Sponsorship". Retrieved 19 September 2014.
  10. "Eastern Illinois Panthers - Turn Back the Clock Tuesday - May 16, 1981". Retrieved 19 September 2014.
  11. Archived September 30, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  12. "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.
  13. Archived September 22, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
  14. 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.
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