Jul 26, 2016
SALT LAKE CITY
- Westminster College Athletics achieved another milestone in its transition toward full NCAA Division II membership as the program was approved by the NCAA II Management Council to advance to year two of the three-year membership process. Westminster received notification from the NCAA Division II Membership Committee that the program successfully completed candidacy year one in 2015-16 and was recommended to advance to candidacy year two.
"We are glad to be approved to take the next step in our transition to NCAA Division II active membership status," said Stephen Morgan, president of Westminster College. "Completing the transition will be a game changer for Westminster, encouraging our coaches and students to strive for the next level of athletic excellence."
Full membership in NCAA Division II is a three-year process with the Griffins participating in candidacy year two during the upcoming 2016-17 athletic year.
The Griffins will enter their second season as a member of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference in 2016-17. Per conference rules, the Griffins will not be eligible to participate in any conference postseason events that have an automatic qualifier for the NCAA Championships, and they will not be eligible for NCAA II postseason play.
If all requirements are met by the Department of Athletics in 2016-17, Westminster will move on to provisional membership status in 2017-18. With provisional membership, Westminster will also not be allowed to compete in postseason play.
If all benchmarks are met in provisional membership, the first year of full Division II membership with eligibility for postseason play will be in 2018-19.
"This is very good news for the college, our students, student-athletes and coaches," said Shay Wyatt
, Westminster's director of athletics. "This approval is due to the efforts of many on our campus. While we still have more work ahead of us, this is another important step toward active membership in NCAA Division II and the RMAC, which will further enhance the college and the experience for our student-athletes."
The NCAA II Management Council also approved Holy Names University, Mississippi College, Rogers State University and Southern Wesleyan University into active Division II membership after the schools completed the required process.
Six schools are set to advance into their final year of the membership process: California State University, San Marcos; Concordia University Irvine; Concordia University Portland; Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (Florida); Oklahoma Baptist University and Spring Hill College.
Two others, Biola University and Davenport University, will begin the initial year of the process. Auburn University at Montgomery was asked to repeat its first year of the process.
About NCAA Division II:
NCAA Division II is one of the three membership divisions at the National Collegiate Athletic Association, an organization comprising more than 1,200 institutions, conferences and affiliated organizations. Division II is a group of institutions and conferences that serve almost 90,000 student-athletes nationwide, including Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico. The emphasis for the student-athlete experience in Division II is a comprehensive program of learning and development. The Division II approach provides growth opportunities through academic achievement, learning in high-level athletic competition and the development of societal attitudes in service to the community. The balance and integration of these different areas of learning provide Division II student-athletes with a path to graduation while cultivating a variety of skills and knowledge for life ahead. For additional information on Division II efforts, visit ncaa.org.