Game Changers

Change is in the Air

Game Changers

Change is in the Air

drone shot of campus in the fall, cropped version

The new and improved Monk mascot—big, blue bearded, and ready to rally—is the perfect representation of the pride that Saint Joseph’s College holds for both its top-notch academic and athletic programs. The new mascot was rolled out at last year’s 2019 commencement ceremony, and quickly became a fan favorite icon all over campus. Saint Joseph’s College is the only college in the United States in any division that sports the Monk name in athletics. College members have been proudly calling themselves Monks since 1970, only one year after the introduction of varsity sport programs to our campus. The Saint Joe’s Monk has undergone a number of different representations over the years. The Monk mascot logo from 1970 is a full body design of a monk, sporting a halo and dribbling a basketball. The Monk logo we use now was rolled out in 2007, with an even newer version introduced in the summer 2019. These designs were more modern and streamlined, and can be seen printed on shirts, hats, bags, and uniforms all over campus. This new Monk logo design was embraced by all and is an appropriate choice to represent our award-winning sports programs on the national stage.

monk mascot
Monk Mascot

With the new logo bringing SJC sports into a more modern age, alumnus and Board of Trustees member Dr. Colonel Solis ’93 thought that the school also needed an updated mascot that we could feel proud of. Dr. Solis says that “a mascot elevates the spirit of the entire student community on campus,” and that he is “very pleased to give back to the college.” The new Monk mascot has been a huge hit at games and events all over campus, and he certainly has bolstered school spirit in his time here, not that our fans need much incentive to get excited about all the amazing athletic programs here on campus. Since the start of the decade in 2010, the Saint Joseph’s Monks have brought home 24 GNAC Championship titles, appeared in 25 NCAA tournaments, been home to 8 All American athletes, and had a total of 1323 wins, only 738 loses, 13 ties, and has had the highest winning percentage, at 64.2%, that the school has even seen.

Col. Solis and Dr. Jim Dlugos
Board of Trustees member Col. Jaime Solis ’93 (left) and Dr. Jim Dlugos, President of Saint Joseph’s College of Maine

The athletics teams at St. Joe’s, their players, coaches, fans, and supporters, are dedicated to constant improvement, innovation, and game play that harnesses the core values of the college. One of the biggest sport innovations on campus was the addition of our new five-million-dollar athletic complex, complete with an artificial turf-surfaced and lighted field, an eight-lane track, a storage facility for equipment, a satellite athletic training room, and on-site parking. Athletic director Brian Curtain says the facility “falls perfectly in line with our College’s core values of excellence and community,” and that it also “fulfills our athletic department’s principle of striving to provide the highest-quality student-athlete experience possible.” This complex will work to serve not only the Monks, but sports teams from all over Southern Maine as well, helping to elevate the sports experience for our fantastic athletes, coaches, and fans.

All of this innovation and change are possible because of the generous donations we receive from alumni and other supporters. Over the past years, your donations have allowed the athletics team at SJC to bolster our program with improvements and innovations like collapsible bleachers on our pool deck, a new scoreboard at Mercy Field, an outdoor lighted basketball court named after former basketball player Clark Noonan, and construction of our Hall of Fame Room, to name just a few.

One of the most recent athletic donation campaigns on campus is the Mike McDevitt Court Campaign. Mike McDevitt is a longtime women’s basketball coach at SJC and a men’s basketball alum. McDevitt is on his 28th coaching season, and over those years has won 12 conference championships, appeared in 12 national tournaments, attained a 74% winning average with a total of 534 games won, and currently ranks 13th in victories and 18th in winning percentage among all active NCAA DIII women’s basketball coaches. McDevitt is the winningest basketball coach (men’s or women’s) in the history of SJC athletics. Mike McDevitt was also a standout men’s basketball player during his time attending Saint Joseph’s, scoring 1,381 points and 674 rebounds as a four-year starter for the Monks, and was inducted into the SJC Athletics Hall of Fame in 2011. Starting in 2020, the basketball court in Alfond Center will be named the Mike McDevitt Court, but it is important to McDevitt that everyone recognize that this honor is not his alone. “This is for the alums that are in the room, the former players, current players, coaches, administration and staff, and the Sisters of Mercy,” he says. “I certainly hope that when I’m long gone and you look at my name, you won’t think that it was just Mike McDevitt, you’ll remember that it was the women’s basketball program that attained the honor of having the name on the court.” The announcement of the court naming is accompanied by a donation campaign to aid in the construction of new men’s and women’s basketball team room, along with a lobby suite.

Dr. Jim Dlugos, college president, women's basketball head coach Mike McDevitt, and Brian Curtin, director of athletics
Dr. Jim Dlugos, college president, women’s basketball head coach Mike McDevitt, and Brian Curtin, director of athletics

Here at St. Joe’s, the success of our athletic teams is something we take great pride in. Our players, staff, and coaches work hard to make our college a place where athletes can grow and showcase their talents, not only in sports, but also in academics. Being a Monk means something, and it connects you to a large group of students, faculty, and staff—past and present—forever. We are happy to be able to showcase our new and improved Monk mascot, who shows us with a big toothy smile that we should all be proud to be a part of this community. Once a Monk, always a Monk!

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