Best Colleges for Hunting and Riflery

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  Best Colleges for Hunting and Riflery

Explore the best NCAA riflery and hunting colleges.

By Ashley Henshaw


Best Colleges for Hunting and Riflery
Photo: Thinkstock

Though hunting and riflery may not be the first activities college students think of when they’re considering outdoor recreation options, many students enjoy these activities and find others on campus who do as well.

Though hunting does come with some controversy, many colleges offer numerous safe and legal outlets for hunting and riflery. If you’re interested in this activity or you’re curious to see how local groups conduct themselves, learning more about the opportunities offered by your university may change your perspective.

Students who are interested in hunting may find groups on campus that organize trips throughout the school year.

College Rifle Championships

You’re probably aware football and basketball are NCAA sports, but did you know riflery is as well? Riflery is a great way to stay active if you’re a marksman without harming any animals.

For the past 30 years, the NCAA has hosted men’s and women’s championships for rifle. Unlike most collegiate sports, teams are coed. Eight teams qualify for the national championship tournament as well as five individual qualifiers for smallbore and air gun rifle.

The sport’s history has been dominated by two schools: Alaska – Fairbanks (10) and West Virginia (24) have combined to win 24 of the 30 total titles. The 2011 championships were held in Columbus, Georgia, with the University of Kentucky finally breaking through, winning the school’s first national championship after finishing as the runner-up four previous times.

College Hunting Clubs

Students who are interested in hunting may find groups on campus that organize trips throughout the school year. The University of Wisconsin – Madison and Oregon State both have hunting expeditions that any student can join. However, before you begin, there are several laws and guidelines you’ll need to be aware of:

  • You’ll need to have a state hunting license in order to participate in any excursions.
  • Each state has laws outlining when you can hunt specific game. Students at Wisconsin hunt deer, whereas Oregon State students hunt turkey.
  • Although membership is open to anyone, groups may have a limited number of open spots and a limited number of animals it can kill.

Most of these groups take the time to assist with local environmentalism and conservation. The University of Wisconsin Badger hunting club works with the state Department of Natural Resources to assist farmers who suffer crop losses from deer grazing.

Best Colleges for Hunting and Riflery: Tips and Tactics

  • Go for a hike in the designated area to familiarize yourself with the surroundings before you begin hunting.
  • See if your school offers rifle classes to help you hone your skills.
  • Make sure your group goes over all safety procedures, routes and emergency strategies before any excursions.

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