|University||Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute|
|Conference||Liberty League, ECAC Hockey|
|Athletic director||Lee McElroy|
|Location||Troy, New York|
|Football stadium||East Campus Stadium|
|Arena||East Campus Arena|
|Baseball stadium||Robison Field|
|Other arenas||Houston Field House|
|Colors||Cherry and white|
The RPI Engineers are composed of 21 teams representing Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in intercollegiate athletics, including men and women's basketball, cross country, ice hockey, lacrosse, soccer, swimming & diving, tennis, and track and field. Men's sports include baseball, football, and golf. Women's sports include field hockey, and softball. The Engineers compete in the NCAA Division III and are members of the Liberty League for all sports except ice hockey, which competes in NCAA Division I, as a member of ECAC Hockey.
|Cross Country||Field Hockey|
|Soccer||Swimming & Diving|
|Swimming & Diving||Tennis|
|Tennis||Track and Field|
|Track and Field|
The school's teams were originally nicknamed the "Fighting Engineers" in 1925, likely by a student writing for the paper, and called so due to the energy of the players. In 1995, the nickname of some of the school's teams was officially changed from the Engineers to the Red Hawks; however, the hockey, football, cross-country, tennis and track and field teams all chose to retain the Engineers name. The Red Hawks name was never much liked by the student body; a Red Hawk mascot was frequently taunted by fans who threw objects at him and chanted, "kill the chicken!". Finally, in 2009 the nickname was changed back to Engineers. In contrast, the official ice hockey mascot, Puckman (an anthropomorphic hockey puck with an engineer's helmet) has always been very popular.
During the 1970s and 1980s, one RPI cheer was:
The lacrosse team represented the United States in the 1948 Olympics in London, playing to a 5-5 tie with a British side. It won the Wingate Memorial Trophy as national collegiate champions (shared with Virginia) in 1952. Future NHL head coach Ned Harkness coached the lacrosse and ice hockey teams, winning national championships in both sports.
The Engineers baseball squad is perennially atop the Liberty League standings, and has seen eight players move on to the professional ranks, including four players selected in the MLB draft. (No RPI Engineer has played in the majors, but Dave Lohrman and Bill Snyder, who were both drafted in 1997, made it as far as AAA ball.) The team is coached by Karl Steffen (Ithaca '78). The Engineers play their home games at the historic Robison Field.
American rugby was played on campus in the late 1870s. Intercollegiate football begin as late as 1886 when an RPI team first played a Union College team on a leased field in West Troy (Watervliet). Since 1903, RPI and nearby Union have been rivals in football, making it the oldest such rivalry in the state. The teams have played for the Dutchman's Shoes since 1950. RPI Football had their most successful season in 2003, when they finished 11-2 and lost to St. Johns (Minn.) in the NCAA Division III semi final game.
The track and field team competes as part of NCAA Division 3 and the Liberty League.
The Houston Field House is a 4,780-seat multi-purpose arena located on the RPI campus. It opened in 1949 and is home to the RPI Engineers men's and women's ice hockey teams. The Field House was renovated starting in 2007 as part of the major campus improvement project to build the East Campus Athletic Village. The renovations included locker rooms upgrades, addition of a new weight room, and a new special reception room dedicated to Ned Harkness. Additionally, as part of the renovations through a government grant, solar panels were installed on the roof to supply power to the building.
As part of the Rensselaer Plan, the Institute recently completed a major project to improve its athletic facilities with the East Campus Athletic Village. The plan included construction of a new and much larger 4,842-seat football stadium, a basketball arena with seating for 1,200, a new 50-meter pool, an indoor track and field complex, new tennis courts, new weight rooms and a new sports medicine center. The Institute broke ground on August 26, 2007, and construction of the first phase is expected to last two years. The estimated cost of the project is $78 million for phase one and $35-$45 million for phase two. Since the completion of the new stadium, the bleachers on the Class of '86 football field on the central campus have been removed and the field has become an open space. In the future the new space could be used for expansions of the academic buildings, but for now members of the campus planning team foresee a "historic landscape with different paths and access ways for students and vehicles alike".