Richmond football to join Patriot League in 2025

By Kevin Kelley -

The Richmond Spiders football team will join the Patriot League in 2025, the school announced on Tuesday.

Richmond will officially join the Patriot League as a football-only member on July 1, 2025. Conference affiliations for all other Spider sports teams will not be affected.

According to the release, the conference move is being made “…following a comprehensive University review of the football team’s conference affiliation initiated after the 2023 season in response to continued changes in the national FCS landscape.”

“The institutions of the Patriot League are outstanding, both athletically and academically, and we are excited to join them for the 2025 football season,” said University of Richmond President Kevin F. Hallock. “The University of Richmond is firmly committed to not only meeting, but advancing the competitive goals of our student-athletes, and the upward trajectory of the Patriot League provides a great environment for the future success of Spider Football.”

Richmond has been a member of the Coastal Athletic Association (CAA) since the 2007 season. Prior to that, the Spiders competed in the Atlantic 10 Conference from 1997 through 2006.

“The Patriot League provides our football student-athletes and staff with the opportunity to experience championship-level competition at the highest levels of the FCS in a conference that is rich in tradition, scholarship, and stability,” said Vice President and Director of Athletics John Hardt. “Joining the Patriot League puts our football program in a great position to continue to compete for championships and achieve the type of postseason success that is so important to our players, our university, and Spiders everywhere.”

With the addition of Richmond, the Patriot League will expand to eight teams. The Spiders will join existing members Bucknell, Colgate, Fordham, Georgetown, Holy Cross, Lafayette, and Lehigh.

Future Richmond Football Schedules

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Comments (4)

Villanova next to make the move to the Patriot for football? And if so, Elon and W&M move to the SoCon or even Hampton and Campbell?

As A Villanova Fan I would mind them jumping to Patriot for Football & remain in Big East for other Athletics especially Basketball & Lacrosse.

With JMU and Delaware using the CAA as their stepping stone to the FBS, and the CAA itself apparently in the business of becoming a twenty-member conference just like those big-money Elites at the top of the food chain, was this what Richmond brass saw as their only path to survival? Realistically it CAN’T be a positive for the football program from a non-financial POV: they’ll be head-and-shoulders above even Holy Cross on day one, without any real advantageous route to an FCS title. Should we presume this is partly cost-cutting and partly CYA before the whole thing blows up?

What makes you think the CAA (atleast for Football) isn’t in serious trouble? The Patriot has long standing rivalries big donor alumni, the CAA at this stage is a bunch of misfits. And the divide now widens for the Northern and Southern schools with no real identity that links the remainders in old rivalries or even academic profiles.

To make matters worse the FloSports partnership has been horrible for the conference in exposure and giving fans and casuals access to live events, in particular due to its limited distribution and poor pricing model. There’s already been rumors W&M would look to the SoCon if Delaware and Villanova left. And if that happens would Campbell and Elon soon follow?

At that point Albany, UNH, URI, Stony Brook, Bryant, Monmouth, and Maine could add Sacred Heart and Robert Morris to form their own conference. That would leave Townson, NC A&T, and Hampton to look back to the Big South.