After their establishment in 1989, The Hawks, as they were then known, needed to secure their longevity in the Townsville Football League.
It was decided in the early '90s that the club would move to the JCU University campus in Douglas. This decision proved successful and we have remained there since.
During this time we have enjoyed much success having won 9 Senior Premierships, 7 Reserve Grade Premierships, 1 Ladies Premiership and
1 Junior Premiership.
Our playing base is varied, welcoming players of all skills and ages, with players from towns surrounding Townsville, as well as from removed locations such as Charters Towers. Having a strong presence at the University, we offer their students an extra-curricula activity to enjoy outside of their studies and have been able to depend on these students to help out when times have been tough. The majority of our office bearers over the years have all been from outside the University. A few of which have been involved with the running of the club since its inception in 1989.
In 2007, we decided that if we were going to survive, and in the interest of AFL and junior sports in Townsville, we would need to address the issue of Junior Football. We commenced with an Under 10’s and Under 12’s team in that season. In the following 5 seasons, we grew from two junior teams to six. At its peak in 2016, our junior program was flourishing and we were able to field an Under 7's, Under 9’s, Under 11’s, Under 13’s, Under 15s and a Shalom Under 17's. The hard work everyone had put in was starting to pay off and we started to really grow our own homegrown Hawks to very soon bolster our senior sides….the dream was becoming a reality. Unfortunately for reasons outside of anyone control, these numbers have wained over the years, but we are striving to become a junior powerhouse in years to come.
In 2015, the Townsville Football League started its own women's competition. We knew that women and youth girls was the next important step for not only our club, but for AFL in North Queensland, and nominated our first-ever women's side. After a great first year in the competition, our 'Hawkettes' went on to win the Premiership, defeating Hermit Park. Since then our Hawkettes have been a model of consistency making finals every year.
In 2019 disaster struck Townsville and its surroundings, with a one in 100-year storm hitting the region. Townsville suffered extreme flooding which caused millions of dollars of damage to peoples homes and belongings. Once it was safe, a call was put out to our members and the University Hawks turned out in force to help clean up the aftermath. It is during these hard times when helping people to somehow regroup after losing everything, a person's mettle and compassion are exercised and the members that helped during that time is something we will always be proud of.
In 2020 a global pandemic struck, with the dangerous COVID-19 virus impacting everything from shopping to sports. Overseas saw hundreds of thousands of people die and the world was brought to a standstill. Travelling abroad was banned and in Australia, people were unable to holiday interstate, with some places restricted to their postcodes. The North Queensland region was lucky enough to avoid the devastation this virus caused around the world, and contact sports were allowed again. In a shortened season we filed a senior men's and women's side, an Under 9's and an Under 11's side. In the damaging economical environment, we were now a part of, footy became a saving grace for some people.
After consecutive years of disruptions, playing numbers have suffered but we are looking forward to the journey ahead. This year we field a seniors, reserves and womens side as well as an under 7's, under 9's, under 11's and for the first time in 4 years, an Under 13's. With a new home ground at the professional class Riverway Stadium we are on the march.
Nothing will dampen our spirits and we are already looking forward to a greater junior involvement in the club and a rebuild of what will be an exciting Senior Mens team to complement what has been our Mainstay in consistency with our Women’s team, the Hawkettes!