Colgate is part of NCAA Division I for all sports except football, which is Division
I-AA. The athletic teams are called the "Raiders," and the team colors are maroon and white. Colgate plays as part of either the
Patriot League or the Eastern College Athletic Conference,
depending on the sport.For much of its history, Colgate's sports teams were called the "Red Raiders." The origin of the name is disputed -- some
claim it was in reference to the school color, maroon, while others say that it was a reference to the team's ability to defeat
its much larger rival, the Cornell University "Big Red." In the
1970s, the school debated changing the name because of concerns that it was offensive to Native Americans. At that time the name was kept, but the mascot was changed from a Native American to a
hand holding a torch. In 2001, a group of students approached the administration with the concern that the name "Red Raiders"
still implied a Native American mascot. The school agreed to drop the word "Red" from the team name starting in the 2001-02
school year; however, its has been revealed that the "Red" moniker was a reference to the Vikings, yet it has not been reattached
to the nickname.In the 2003 season, for the first time, the Raiders made it to the NCAA I-AA championship game in football, where they lost to
the University of Delaware. Their season record was 13-1.