We’re number one!
It’s a cheer which now applies to not one but two Red College sports teams as the Kings basketball and volleyball teams are ranked first overall across Canada, the first time in the school’s history this has happened.
“There’s been a couple of times I believe where we might have had men’s volleyball and women’s volleyball ranked number one,” said Director of Athletics Keith Hansen.
The former Kings volleyball head coach says it was a feeling of pride when those rankings were released showing two of the teams under his reign as director at the top.
“We all know the final rankings are the ones that matter but I think it speaks volumes for the job the coaches have done and the support we get from administration here within our athletic program.”
With a yearly budget of about $750,000 dollars Hansen says teams supplement it with fundraising of about a quarter of a million dollars but he credits the Athletic Leadership Fund for being able to hire coaches whom Hansen regards as the best staff in the country as well as attracting student athletes which have helped push the program to this lofty status.
“The coaches need the support of administration and administration needs to support the coaches and ultimately everybody has to be committed to being the best.”
Hansen is also quick to point out two other teams at Red Deer College are doing very well this year with the Queens hockey team topping the standings and Queens volleyball getting stronger after a slow start to the season.
“In all honesty I think our women’s hockey team, if there was a national championship in women’s hockey which hopefully will be there in the next few years, they would be number one in the country.
“And women’s volleyball right now is ranked 11, I think probably we’re top five for sure.”
Hansen added the crowds at home games has grown steadily and there is a feeling of pride amongst the students who call these athletes classmates.
“People like to identify with winning teams and successful programs so we have a lot of support in that way and I hope some of the other students feel that source of pride as well.”