Contents Introduction 2 DII Facts and Figures 3 Letter from DII Vice President Terri Steeb Gronau Championships 6 20 2014 DII Championships National Championships Festivals Governance 24 Committees 32 News Briefs Honors and Awards 36 Scholarships and Grants 38 Elite 89 Honorees 40 Woman of the Year Nominees Conferences 44 Summary of Achievements, Fall 2013-Fall 2014 Looking Ahead 70 DII Brand Enhancement 72 Communication Resources 2014 Division II Yearbook 1 FACTS AND FIGURES 300 7 Active members Schools in provisional year 5 Schools in candidacy year two 6 Schools in candidacy year one Life in the Balance 49/51 Percentage of public vs. private (active members only) 3,848 Average enrollment Enrollment at DII active members: Higher education has lasting importance on an individual’s future success. For this reason, the emphasis on the student-athlete experience in Division II is a comprehensive program of learning and development in a personal setting. The Division II approach provides growth opportunities through academic achievement, learning in high-level athletics competition and development of positive societal attitudes in service to community. The balance and integration of these different areas of learning opportunity provide Division II student-athletes a path to graduation, while cultivating a variety of skills and knowledge for life ahead. 121 Institutions (40.3%) 2,500-7,499 students 30 Institutions (10%) 7,500-14,999 students 143 Institutions (47.7%) Less than 2,500 students 6 Institutions (2%) 15,000 students and above MEN WOMEN Undergraduate enrollment: Undergraduate enrollment: 504,902 649,573 (44%) (56%) Number of student-athletes: Number of student-athletes: 65,778 46,613 (59%) (41%) Average number of student-athletes: Average number of student-athletes: 269 137 160 130 at schools with football at schools with football at schools without football at schools without football Sports sponsorship average: Sports sponsorship average: 6.9 8.0 Number of DII championships: Number of DII championships: 12 13 (8,720 participants) 2 2014 Division II Yearbook (7,929 participants) introduction of nCaa is a trademark of the national Collegiate athletic association. 2014 AnnuAl YeArbook Celebrating the Collegiate model for more than 40 Years Celebrating the Collegiate model for more than 40 Years CONNECT WITH US! Twitter: @NCAADII Instagram: @NCAADII Facebook.com/NCAADivisionII DIVISION II 2014 ANNUAL YEARBOOK SHARE YOUR VIEW Student-athletes celebrate during the Fall Festival’s closing ceremony. 2014 Division II Yearbook Editorial staff Gary Brown, Josh Looney Editors Design and Editing Arnel Reynon Creative Director Amanda Goehlert Art Director Martha Allan Scott Deitch Phyllis Mahoney Copy editors Sport Graphics 3423 Park Davis Circle Indianapolis, Indiana 46235 317/899-7000 www.sportg.com Printing JB Graphics Indianapolis, Indiana 46280 www.jbgraphicsinc.com 2015 copyright The Division II Yearbook is produced annually and distributed at the NCAA Convention as a benefit of membership. All content is copyright of the NCAA. Any content that is reproduced in print or online without written or expressed permission is strictly prohibited. DII strives to reflect the collegiate model Last year in this space I joined with the entire Division II membership in celebrating our 40th anniversary as a collection of like-minded institutions and people who work tirelessly to make the student-athlete experience the best it can be. Last year was indeed a time to honor – and be joyous about – our rich history. I also promised that our future was even brighter than our past. Now that the calendar has turned over another year, I am even more certain of that claim. There’s been a lot of public debate lately about the collegiate model and how it is being threatened by financial and legal pressures. Most of that debate – and most of the pressures – don’t directly concern Division II, but how we as a division help shape the collegiate model certainly does. When we talk about “the collegiate model,” what do we mean? I’d like to think Division II is a spot-on example of how we define it. Ideally, the collegiate model of athletics is one in which students are afforded ample opportunity to participate in varsity sports at a highly competitive level and benefit from the attributes inherent within that participation, such as leadership, teamwork, self-discipline, commitment, sportsmanship and building lifelong relationships. But the collegiate model should also afford student-athletes the opportunity to explore their varied academic and social interests, to grow as productive citizens and to contribute to their communities. As I see it, the collegiate model embraces: • Family • Access • Opportunity • Leadership Development • Education and Graduation I believe we are in a position to talk about “the Division II model” portraying what “the collegiate model” is supposed to be. We are implementing a brand-enhancement campaign this year to emphasize what we as a division provide: high-level athletics competition, the highest access ratio for postseason championships, a commitment to community engagement, and legislation that strategically (and without undo burden) allows our membership to enhance the student-athlete experience. introduction We are fortunate as a division to be in a position of fiscal strength in order to implement these philosophies. This year, we operated on a surplus and found a way to expand our championship brackets (Division II already had the best access ratio of the three divisions). Our ability to fund initiatives that enhance the student-athlete experience is not by accident. Rather, it is because of you. Our membership’s longstanding commitment to strategic planning and the kind of innovative thinking that hundreds of volunteers in our governance structure display annually is why Division II is what it is today. We as a membership have built upon our foundation and have abided by our established principles for 41 years. Are there challenges ahead? Certainly. Perhaps most pressing is the restructuring in Division I that allows conferences more autonomy to align legislation with resources. It remains to be seen how the autonomy philosophy will affect the entire Division I membership, and possibly Division II, and whether it may prompt thoughts of reclassification for some Division I members. As such, we will continue to refine the Division II membership process and plan for strategic growth, regardless of what happens in other divisions. We will always act in the best interests of Division II. My commitment to you as Division II vice president is to continue to build Division II as the example of the collegiate model. We at the national office will operate with integrity and a focus on service to you, our membership. This is my leadership promise that I hope will support last year’s promise of a future that builds on our past to continue making our division great. Terri Steeb Gronau Division II Vice President 2014 Division II Yearbook 3 HIPS ONS MPI CHA WINTER D i v i s i o n II w o m e n ’ s b a s k e t b a l l Semifinals Bentley 77, Cal Poly Pomona 62 West Texas A&M 80, Nova Southeastern 66 Senior Lauren Battista celebrates Bentley’s first women’s basketball championship. Harry Scull Jr. / NCAA Photos 6 2014 Division II Yearbook Championships championship Bentley 73, West Texas A&M 65 Heading into the championship game of the NCAA Division II women’s basketball tournament, the undefeated Bentley women’s basketball team hadn’t faced too many deficits in the 2013-14 season. But in the final, the Falcons found themselves down nine points (58-49) – which matched the most they had trailed this season – to West Texas A&M with 5:37 left in the game. Being in the unfamiliar spot of playing from behind didn’t rattle the Falcons. Instead their championship pedigree came through as they rallied for a 73-65 victory March 28 in Erie, Pennsylvania. A full-court press called by coach Barbara Stevens was the key strategy that helped change the momentum and give the 35-0 Falcons their first NCAA title in the sport. It also marked the first national championship for Stevens, who has won 917 games in her 37-year coaching career. “Am I dreaming? Is this real? I can’t tell you what a tremendous ride this has been for our coaching staff and our Bentley community with these young ladies,” said Stevens, who has been at Bentley since 1986. “Proud of them doesn’t even begin to describe how I feel. I get emotional when I think of them because we’ve gone through so much together. They are truly champions. They have been champions in our book from day one.” Jacqui Brugliera, the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player, led Bentley with 17 points. All-tournament selections Courtney Finn and Lauren Battista added 21 and 14 points respectively for the Falcons. All three players are seniors, and knowing it was the final game of their careers helped fuel the improbable comeback. Above: Bentley head coach “The clock was ticking Barbara Stevens savors the down under five (minutes), first national championship then under four (minutes),” in her 37-year hall-of-fame coaching career. Battista said. “We were down by a decent amount. At that point, with my career on the line – the seven seniors, really, with our careers on the line – the national championship at stake, we need to make big plays.” Devin Griffin led West Texas A&M (32-3) with 20 points in the championship game. – Greg Johnson D i v i s i o n II W o m e n ’ s I n d o o r T r a c k a n d F i e l d Team Results 1st: Adams St., 67 2nd: Johnson C. Smith, 59 3rd: Lincoln (MO), 47 Chuck Hammork (left) contributed nine points, six assists and 12 rebounds in Central Missouri’s title win over West Liberty. Joe Robbins / NCAA Photos Adams State’s women’s indoor track team ventured to Winston-Salem, North Carolina, in search of its second indoor championship. The team entered the March 14-15 event ranked third in the nation, boasting a new coach and 14 athletes – across an array of disciplines – on the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association’s all-region teams. Grizzlies’ head coach Rock Light returned to his alma mater this season to lead the school’s track and field program. Ironically, at a school known for its talented distance runners, a sprinter led the way. After a stellar season in which she was named all-region in four events, senior Kayon Robinson lived up to her résumé when it mattered most. Robinson helped earn 20 of the Grizzlies’ 67 points, winning the 400-meter dash, finishing third in the 200, and contributing to the Grizzlies’ fifth-place finish in the 1,600-meter relay. – Brian Burnsed D i v i s i o n II m e n ’ s b a s k e t b a l l Semifinals Central Mo. 71, Metro St. 69 West Liberty 86, S.C. Aiken 83 championship Central Mo. 84, West Liberty 77 Sometimes a little tough love can lead to a special moment. Central Missouri senior Chuck Hammork can attest to this philosophy after helping the Mules capture the NCAA Division II Men’s Basketball Championship with an 84-77 victory over West Liberty in the March 29 final in Evansville, Indiana. During a midseason tournament in Las Vegas in 2013, Central Missouri coach Kim Anderson sent Hammork back to campus for not having a good attitude toward the coaching staff or his teammates. Hammork apologized, and a year later he found himself cutting down the nets with his teammates after contributing nine points, six assists and 12 rebounds in the championship game – the Mules’ first men’s basketball title since 1984. “Here’s the thing about ol’ Chuck,” Anderson said, growing emotional in the postgame news conference. “Chuck and I have been through a lot. If I was going down, I was going down with Chuck.” But defense played as big a role in the victory as Hammork’s heroics. The Mules (30-5) held West Liberty (31-4) to 24 points below its nation-leading 101 points-per-game average. “Defense was the difference at the end,” said Daylen Robinson, the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player after scoring 16 of his 21 points in the second half. “Coach Anderson said, ‘We need stops the last four minutes,’ and that’s just what we did. We knew we had to contest their shots, or they would score a bunch of points.” – Greg Johnson Right: Danielle Williams of Johnson C. Smith races to victory in the 200-meter dash, while Adams State’s team (above) marks its second team championship. Bruce Chapman / NCAA Photos Championships 2014 Division II Yearbook 7 The Drury women’s and men’s teams cheer during the men’s 400-yard freestyle relay at the Division II Swimming and Diving Championships. D i v i s i o n II m e n ’ s swimming and diving David Richard / NCAA Photos D i v i s i o n II w o m e n ’ s swimming and diving TEAM RESULTS 1st: Drury, 569.5 2nd: Fla. Southern, 361 3rd: Wayne St. (MI), 358.5 Team Results 1st: Drury, 486 2nd: Wayne St. (MI), 419 3rd: Queens (NC), 368.5 This kind of dominance doesn’t happen Though members of the Drury women’s by accident. swimming and diving team didn’t step into Drury men’s swimming and diving double-digit championship streak territory earned the team title at the Division II this spring like their counterparts on the Men’s Swimming and Diving Championmen’s team did, the women did further ships on March 15 at the Spire Institute in their dominance at the Division II Women’s Drury head coach Brian Reynolds (lower right) celebrates with his teams after Geneva, Ohio. The championship was the they each captured national titles. Swimming and Diving Championships. 10th consecutive for the Panthers, ranking And they had the same advantage as the school among other elite programs that have dominated their sports with a the men as they headed into the championships: a swimming culture double-digit title streak. that many of them had grown up with, one amplified by their head Drury is among only eight teams in NCAA history that have won 10 champicoach, Brian Reynolds. onship titles in a row. Reynolds is also the coach at the Springfield Aquatics Swim Club So dominant was Drury in the pool that its win, on the men’s side, was nearly and has nursed the culture of swimming in the town; this year, a halfcertain by the end of the second day of the four-day event. Senior Nick McCarthy dozen local swimmers are on the men’s and women’s swimming and – who had placed 17th, 16th and ninth in his previous 50-yard freestyle efforts at diving teams at Drury. the championships – captured first, with freshman teammate Daniel Radzkowski This season’s men’s and women’s championships came in Reyntaking second to help the Panthers create a comfortable first-day lead. olds’ 31st year of coaching the men and 26th year as coach of the womDrury pulled further ahead the next day, when the 200-yard free relay team of en. Altogether, Reynolds has won 12 national team titles with the men Radzkowski, junior Sean Feher, junior Samuel Olson and McCarthy took first in and 10 with the women. He also held several NAIA titles before Drury an NCAA-record time of 1:19.00. joined NCAA Division II. “I try not to think of the number as 10 because almost every year I kind of just “We all went through prep, then we all went to club and right put the trophy on the shelf and go into the next year,” coach Brian Reynolds told through to college,” sophomore Gretchen Stein told the hometown the Springfield News-Leader. “I can’t say that winning 10 in a row is something newspaper, the Springfield News-Leader. “I feel like everybody, we’ve that most coaches dream about. I’m thrilled that it’s going to happen for the men.” all swam together for so long it feels like … everybody is a brother or – Amy Wimmer Schwarb sister.” – Amy Wimmer Schwarb 8 2014 Division II Yearbook Championships D i v i s i o n II w r e s t l i n g TEAM RESULTS 1st: Notre Dame (OH), 99.5 2nd: Neb.-Kearney, 64.5 3rd: Maryville (MO), 58.5 Jason Miller / NCAA Photos Eric Burgey of Notre Dame (Ohio) celebrates with fans after he defeated Chris Watson of Central Oklahoma to win the 165-pound weight class at the Division II Men’s Wrestling Championships. Notre Dame (Ohio) is new to the athletics scene in Division II. But it is already making its presence known, all because of a head coach who has been known in Ohio wrestling for decades. In only their second year as a member of Division II, the Falcons brought home the team title at the Division II Wrestling Championships on March 15. The man at the coaching helm is Frank Romano, who not only started the wrestling program in 2007, but led it to two NAIA titles in 2010 and 2011. The overwhelming victory for Notre Dame (Ohio) included four individual titles. The school’s title winners were Jonatan Rivera at 157 pounds; Eric Burgey at 165 pounds; Joey Davis at 174 pounds; and Garrett Lineberger at 184 pounds. Davis won a dramatic showdown against another Ohio native, three-time All-American Adam Walters of Findlay. – Amy Wimmer Schwarb D i v i s i o n II M e n ’ s I n d o o r T r a c k a n d F i e l d Team Results 1st: Saint Augustine’s, 84.5 2nd: Adams St., 83 3rd: Ashland, 48 George Williams took the reins of Saint Augustine’s track program in 1976. Thirty-four men’s and women’s track and field championships later – both indoor and outdoor – he insists winning hasn’t gotten old. “Every championship is a different championship,” he said after Saint Augustine’s men’s team captured its second consecutive national indoor title. “I have a good group of kids who believed. When they believe, they can (achieve).” The team’s success was built upon a season in which the Division II school with little more than 1,400 students competed against elite Division I talent. The Falcons traveled to meets held by Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, North Carolina and Penn State before squaring off against conference foes in the Central Intercollegiate Athletics Association Championships, which they won easily. It was the 17th consecutive conference title for Saint Augustine’s. Their victory in the NCAA championships didn’t come quite as easily. After falling behind Adams State in the penultimate event – the 3,000-meter run – the Falcons needed to dominate the 1,600-meter relay. As expected, they did, crossing the line a second faster than second-place Tiffin. “It was very close, but we pulled it out,” Williams said. “It’s always a team effort.” – Brian Burnsed Bruce Chapman / NCAA Photos Members of Saint Augustine’s men’s indoor track team celebrate after successfully defending their national title, edging Adams State by 1.5 points. The Grizzlies had plenty to cheer about, though, as senior Wesley Lavong (left) won the shot put with a throw of 19.5 meters. Championships 2014 Division II Yearbook 9 SPRING Kendra Foley of Grand Valley State (left), and Courtney Anderson of Cal State Stanislaus compete in the 5,000-meter run. Erik Holladay / NCAA Photos D i v i s i o n II W o m e n ’ s Outdoor Track and Field Team Results 1st: Lincoln (MO), 64 2nd: Johnson C. Smith, 59 3rd: Grand Valley St., 53 It was a nail-biting finish May 24 at the Division II Women’s Outdoor Track and Field Championships, with one point separating the leader, Lincoln (Missouri), from second-place Johnson C. Smith heading into the final event: the 1,600-meter relay. The Lincoln foursome of Willomena Williams, Jhevere Hall, Donna-Lee Hylton and Tamara Keane stepped to the line in Allendale, Michigan, knowing they held the fastest time in the division, and that didn’t change after the women sprinted through four laps in a winning time of 3:37.29. The effort secured the national title for the Blue Tigers by five points. Johnson C. Smith finished second, and host Grand Valley State placed third. Momentum for the Lincoln women began to build early in the finals, when the 400-meter relay team of Janelle Riley, Yanique Ellington, Kimberly Bailey and Janae Johnson took the top prize. Ten Lincoln athletes posted 12 All-America performances throughout the day. It was the seventh outdoor track and field championship for the Lincoln program and the first since 2009. – Rachel Stark 10 2014 Division II Yearbook Championships Lincoln’s Tamara Keane celebrates a title-clinching relay victory. Rob Kurtycz / NCAA Photos D i v i s i o n II WOMEN ’ S GOL F Entering the season, members of the Lynn women’s golf team knew they had the right pieces to win a national title. All five of the golfers from the Fighting Knights’ 2013 national championship team had returned, making them the obvious squad to beat. Yet no one could. Lynn won tournament after tournament – 11 in all – and went undefeated against Division II opponents. Then, May 17 at the Rock Barn Golf and Spa in Conover, North Carolina, the Fighting Knights put the exclamation point on their special season, winning the sport’s top honors over Barry by 29 shots. Lynn finished with a four-round score of 1,164, the second lowest in Division II championship history. It was the 22nd national championship (including 11 NCAA titles) for the school based in Boca Raton, Florida, and fifth for the women’s golf program, including three NCAA titles. Lynn’s Louise Manalo notched a 72-hole program record score of 287 to win the individual title. Teammate Jessica Bradley, the PING Women’s Golf Coaches Association Player of the Year, finished one stroke back in second, and All-American Samantha Smolen tied for 10th. All three are expected to return next season. Rounding out the group’s efforts were seniors Irene Calvo and Ellen Chambers, who tied for 23rd. “This group of five players have done so many good things,” Lynn coach Danny Randolph told the Sun-Sentinel. “It was a pretty magical season.” – Rachel Stark Rob Kurtycz / NCAA Photos Elijha Owens (5) of Ashland and Myles Hunter of Minnesota State Mankato compete in the finals of the 110-meter hurdles at Grand Valley State. Hunter finished second in 13.96 seconds, and Owens was third. D i v i s i o n II M e n ’ s O u t d o o r T r a c k a n d F i e l d Lynn junior Louise Manalo shot a 3-overpar 287 to win the individual national title. Grant Halverson / NCAA Photos TEAM RESULTS: 1st: Lynn, 294-297-291-282 – 1,164 2nd: Barry, 305-289-301-298 – 1,193 3rd: Tarleton St., 300-299296-399 – 1,195 INDIVIDUAL RESULTS 1st: Louise Manalo, Lynn, 72-73-74-68 – 287 2nd: Jessica Bradley, Lynn, 72-76-69-71 – 288 3rd: Rebecka Surtevall, Arkansas Tech, 78-71-75-67 – 291 Team results 1st: Saint Augustine’s, 112 2nd: Adams St., 67 3rd: Ashland, 53 The Saint Augustine’s men’s track and field team added to the resume of their legendary coach, George Williams. The Falcons scored 104 of their 112 points on the final day, May 24, to win the Division II Men’s Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Allendale, Michigan. This latest title for Saint Augustine’s gives Williams, who has been coaching since 1976, a total of 35 combined men’s and women’s indoor and outdoor NCAA championships over the course of his career. The Falcons also won back-to-back men’s outdoor track and field national championships. “I am always thankful for a championship,” Williams said. “It never gets old. To see young student-athletes develop on the track and in the classroom is amazing.” Adams State and Ashland finished a distant second and third with 67 and 53 points respectively. Traditionally, the Falcons are led by a strong array of sprinters, hurdlers and jumpers. It was the case this time, too. Saint Augustine’s won four events and scored multiple points in several more to win comfortably. The Falcons cemented the title in the men’s 200-meter dash as five sprinters competed in the finals. Joshua Edmonds placed second in 20.78 and Jermaine Jones took third. Burkheart Ellis Jr. finished fifth, Taffawee Johnson placed sixth and Daniel Jameison came in ninth. – Greg Johnson Jermaine Jones anchors Saint Augustine’s 400-meter relay team. The Falcons won the event and defended their national title. 2014 Division II Yearbook 11 D i v i s i o n II SO F TBALL The final game of the Division II Softball Championship was expected to be a high-scoring affair with the offense that West Texas A&M and Valdosta State brought to the park May 26 in Salem, Virginia. Pitchers Rita Hokianga and Brianna Hancock had different ideas as they both put up zeroes on the scoreboard for six innings. Finally, with two outs in the top of the seventh, West Texas A&M sophomore second baseman Brittany Gehle hit a three-run homer to give the Lady Buffs a 3-0 lead. It was Gehle’s only hit in four games at the final site. “I was just saving it all until the end,” said Gehle, whose team finished the season 60-7. Last season, West Texas A&M coach Kevin Blaskowski had Gehle second in the batting order, but he moved her to the ninth position this season. “I went to Brittany and told her it was not a demotion moving to the nine spot,” Blaskowski said. “We needed her down there because that’s the second leadoff position for us. That’s a key spot in our lineup.” Valdosta State, 48-15, didn’t go down without a fight in the bottom of the inning. After the first two hitters made outs, Morgan Butler and Heather Robinson hit back-to-back solo homers to pull the Blazers to within a run. Hokianga, a native of New Zealand, ended the game with her eighth strikeout. “Half the country of New Zealand followed us now in social media,” Blaskowski said. “I got messages from people over there wishing us luck. It was the middle of the night over there.” – Greg Johnson Andres Alonso / NCAA Photos CHAMPIONSHIP West Texas A&M 3, Valdosta St. 2 Above: Tori Bayer and Brittany Gehle celebrate with Jessica Sipe (right), whose three-run homer put the Lady Buffs in position to win the championship. Right: West Texas A&M pitcher Rita Hokianga limited Valdosta State to four hits. D i v i s i o n II W o m e n ’ s T e n n i s Semifinals Armstrong 5, Saint Leo 0 Barry 5, Hawaii Pacific 1 Championship Barry 5, Armstrong 4 For two years, Barry marched through the regular season undefeated. For two years, its campaign ended in NCAA tournament losses to Armstrong. This year, Barry once again entered the tournament undefeated against Division II opponents – their lone regular-season loss coming against Division I North Florida – and, once again, the Buccaneers were forced to square off with the nemesis that had left the lone blemishes on two years of painstaking work. This time, though, Barry conquered Armstrong in the tournament final, earning the NCAA championship with a 5-4 victory May 17 in Altamonte Springs, Florida. It was the school’s second title in four years, but those bitter defeats made it sweeter than the first. “The first one, we didn’t really know what to expect. It just kind of happened,” Barry head coach Avi Kigel said. “We were in the hunt the last two years, but we just couldn’t get over the hump. I think this one is a little more special.” Barry epitomized dominance, dropping only one match through the first three rounds of the NCAA tournament. Barry’s squad was littered with nationally ranked singles players, three of whom – Emma Onila, Karina Goia and Linda Fritschken – finished the season in the top 20. Additionally, sophomore Kimmy Twelker posted a 15-0 record. – Brian Burnsed 12 2014 Division II Yearbook Championships Barry’s Karina Goia backhands a shot from Armstrong’s Barbora Krtickova. Inset: Kimmy Twelker gets fired up on her way to defeating Armstrong’s Olga Kalodzitsa to clinch the title for Barry. Matt Marriott / NCAA Photos D i v i s i o n II MEN ’ S TENNIS The championship matchup at Sanlando Park in Altamonte Springs, Florida, didn’t disappoint when undefeated West Florida and undefeated Hawaii Championship West Florida 5, Hawaii Pacific 3 Pacific emerged from their respective sides of the bracket. Neither did the subsequent title showdown. West Florida won its third Division II men’s tennis title, but not without a dogfight from Hawaii Pacific, which for the fourth time in its hisWest tory had to settle for Florida’s second. Elio Latella returns The Argos jumped the ball during to a 3-0 lead in doubles his singles match but singles were noagainst Hawaii where near as easy, as Pacific’s Clemens the Sea Warriors won Graute. three of four matches to close within one at 4-3. But as it turned out, the final two matches at Sanlando Park went West Florida’s way, with the only question being who would clinch first. The answer was the Argonauts’ Tony Rajaobelina, a senior who got to deliver the school’s first title since back-to-back wins in 200405. Rajaobelina defeated Jaume Martinez-Vich, 2-6, 6-4, 6-3. “We knew it was not over after winning the three doubles,” Rajaobelina said. “We had to take the example and fight on each court. We knew it was going to be hard to win this one.” – Amy Wimmer Schwarb SEMIFINALS West Florida 5, Armstrong 2 Hawaii Pacific 5, Barry 1 Grant Halverson / NCAA Photos D i v i s i o n II BASEBALL CHAMPIONSHIP Southern Ind. 3, Colorado Mesa 2 (12 innings) Southern Indiana players celebrate with the trophy after a 3-2 win over Colorado Mesa. The season started with modest predictions: Southern Indiana was picked by Great Lakes Valley Conference coaches to finish third in the East Division. The Screaming Eagles’ early season hopes were simply to qualify for the conference tournament for the first time in three years. The season ended with senior Matt Bowles drawing a bases-loaded walk to bring home the winning run in a 3-2, 12-inning victory over Colorado Mesa, giving the fast-rising Eagles their second Division II baseball crown. That unexpected rise came to be defined by the monumental career improvements of several key players: Junior outfielder Kyle Kempf led the Eagles with a .342 batting average, a 71-point improvement over his 2013 season; Jonathon Wandling, who transferred for his senior season from Kentucky Wesleyan, went 10-1 in 16 starts after going 8-11 in his first three seasons; and senior Caleb Eickhoff, who batted a career-best .300 after moving from shortstop to second base, saw a 75-point improvement over the previous season. All three earned first-team all-GLVC honors. That core helped a team that started the year 2-4 post an exhilarating revival. Southern Indiana upset No. 6 Grand Valley State in its home opener, then won 37 of its final 42 regular-season games to capture the top seed in the GLVC tournament. Southern Indiana then beat the top four ranked teams in the NCAA tournament — including Tampa, top ranked all year with a 54-4 record — and closed out its run with a win that tied the longest championship game in Division II history. – Brian Hendrickson Matt Marriott / NCAA Photos Southern Indiana’s Matt Chavarria forces out Jordan Liester (32) of Colorado Mesa at second base during the title game. West Florida’s Bruno Savi and Tony Rajaobelina celebrate after defeating Petr Michnev and Thibaud Berland, the first of three doubles matches West Florida won in the Division II final. Championships 2014 Division II Yearbook 13 D i v i s i o n II R o w i n g Tim Crouch of Florida Southern urges a birdie putt to go in during the Division II Men’s Golf Championships. Crouch earned medalist honors with a three-round total of 213. AJ Mast / NCAA Photos Bill Streicher / NCAA Photos D i v i s i o n II M e n ’ s G o l f After capturing the 2013 national championship, Barry head coach Jimmy Stobs worried that lingering contentment might dull his team’s competitive edge. So his message from the season’s outset was clear: Last year is over. Message received. The Buccaneers captured their second consecutive national championship when they bested Nova Southeastern 3-1-1 in the final at The Meadows golf course in Allendale, Michigan. “In the first team meeting, we talked about being complacent. They were not,” Stobs said. “It’s hard enough to win once, but to repeat, it’s really sweet.” The Buccaneers finished either first or second in all eight of their tournaments throughout the spring. The team was paced by sophomore Adam Svensson, who averaged a mere 70.05 strokes per round through the 37 competitive rounds he played this season, including a 68 in the final round at Allendale that left him one stroke short of a national title in individual play. The championship marked Stobs’ third in the past eight seasons. When he accepted the trophy, his players rushed behind him and hoisted him up on their shoulders. It was a fitting scene; the enduring success of Barry’s golf program rests on his shoulders, after all. – Brian Burnsed Semifinals Championship Nova Southeastern def. Malone, 3-2 Barry def. Nova Southeastern, 3-1-1 Barry def. Chico St., 3-2 Individual Results 1st: Tim Crouch, Fla. Southern, 74-71-68 – 213 2nd: Adam Svensson, Barry, 71-75-68 – 214 3rd: Santiago Gomez, Nova Southeastern, 71-71-73 – 215 Barry sophomore Adam Svensson tees off May 23 during the Division II Men’s Golf Championships. Svensson, who finished second individually, helped Barry win its second straight team title. Erik Holladay / NCAA Photos 14 2014 Division II Yearbook Championships Above: Rowers compete in a tight eights grand final during the championships in Indianapolis. Just two seconds separated first and third in the race. Below: The Humbolt State team celebrates on the podium. Team Results 1st: Humboldt St., 16 2nd: Nova Southeastern, 15 3rd: Western Wash., 14 At the Division II Women’s Rowing Championships, a photo finish decided the difference between second and third place in the Joe Robbins / NCAA Photos eights, the final event of the weekend, and ultimately determined the champion. The tight three-team final – just two points separated first from third, and two seconds separated them in the final race – included only one team that had not been ranked in the top three in the Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association poll. And that team, Humboldt State of Arcata, California, ranked sixth coming into this season, won the title. “At the beginning of the year, I didn’t think this was the year this was going to happen,” Humboldt State coach Robin Meiggs said after the win. “Everyone continued to point forward toward the goal of getting back to nationals, but to win the national championship is unbelievable.” Unbelievable, despite the fact that the rowing championship is the second in three years for Humboldt State, which edged defending champion Nova Southeastern for the win. In third place was Humboldt State’s regional rival, Western Washington. In the fours, Western Washington placed first in 7:59.30, followed closely by Nova Southeastern in 8:01.60. Humboldt State placed a distant third in 8:23.50. That lineup left only one shot for Humboldt State to win the title in the grand final the following day. In the eights, Humboldt State would have to place first, with Nova Southeastern second and Western Washington third. But Western Washington pulled ahead early in the race. Humboldt State overtook Nova Southeastern in the first 750 meters, and by the 1,000-meter halfway point, the Jacks of Humboldt State were closing in on Western Washington. Then, they pulled ahead, winning by nearly two seconds. And Nova Southeastern, too, topped Western Washington – by just .62 seconds – setting up Humboldt State for its second rowing championship. – Amy Wimmer Schwarb D i v i s i o n II M e n ’ s L a c r o s s e Larry French / NCAA Photos Calyl Robinson (right) of Limestone moves to shoot against Octavio Bernabo of LIU Post during the Division II Men’s Lacrosse Championship in Baltimore. Robinson, a junior, scored one of Limestone’s 12 goals in the championship game. SEMIFINALS LIU Post 12, Adelphi 9 Limestone 14, Tampa 10 CHAMPIONSHIP Limestone 12, LIU Post 6 The memories of a disappointing loss in the 2012 national championship game were still fresh for Limestone’s seniors as the lacrosse team headed into its 15th straight appearance in the NCAA tournament with a 16-1 record. “We played in this game in 2012 and ended up losing to a team we had beaten a couple weeks before,” said Todd Nakasuji, who took home Elite 89 honors at both the 2012 championship and this year’s. “That left a bitter taste in our mouths, and we knew as seniors we would do whatever it took to have a different outcome. We came up here and treated it like a business trip. We were going to win the championship game this time, and we got it done.” The team “got it done” May 25 in a 12-6 win over LIU Post at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. The Saints had something else going for them, too: a hometown crowd, 500 miles from home. Some of the team’s top players and many alumni of the Gaffney, South Carolina, college call the Baltimore area home. “Baltimore,” Limestone coach J.B. Clarke said, “is a special place for us and for our fans.” One of those natives, Joey Rotolone – who spent last season mostly on the bench as a reserve midfielder – got things off to a good start when he scored the team’s first goal on a crank shot at the 10:51 mark of the first quarter. The crowd erupted when the ball hit the back of the net. As Rotolone told his hometown newspaper, The Capital: “I wanted to be one of the guys that my teammates could count on and who made a difference.” – Amy Wimmer Schwarb Left: Adelphi’s Jacqueline Williams, the Division II Defender of the Year, chases Lock Haven’s Chelsea Borrino. Below: Adelphi ends its perfect season by winning the championship trophy. D i v i s i o n II W o m e n ’ s L a c r o s s e Semifinals Lock Haven 10, Lindenwood (MO) 9 Adelphi 17, LIU Post 10 Championship Adelphi 7, Lock Haven 5 What happens when you combine the nation’s top defense with its second-most-potent offense? No need for a calculator, the answer is simple: 22-0. Adelphi’s undefeated season, which was capped by a 7-5 NCAA-championship-clinching win May 18 over Lock Haven in Salem, Virginia, was born from a defense that allowed 1.3 fewer goals per game than any other team in the nation and an offense that netted 17.3 goals per contest. The Panthers’ stifling defense was anchored by Jacqueline Williams, who was named Division II Defender of the Year by the Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association, and goalkeeper Taylor Hayes, whose 4.81 season goalsagainst average was nearly a full goal better than secondplace Chrissy Baffuto of Lock Haven. The offensive numbers are equally impressive. Three Panthers – Devan Crimi, Alexa Froccaro and Jackie Jahelka – finished the season in the top 50 in the nation in goals per game, and Crimi led the nation with 83 total goals. Despite controlling games on both ends of the field all season long, Adelphi players didn’t take their championship performance for granted. “It’s an experience I’ll never forget,” Froccaro said. “It was everything I thought it would be.” – Brian Burnsed Andres Alonso / NCAA Photos Championships 2014 Division II Yearbook 15 FALL D i v i s i o n II W o m e n ’ s C r o s s C o u n t r y Team Results 1st: Grand Valley St., 50 2nd: Hillsdale, 115 3rd: Minn. Duluth, 118 Justin Tafoya / NCAA Photos Top: Kendra Foley (No. 88), Allyson Winchester (No. 94) and Jessica Janecke (No. 90) finished 1-2-3 to help Grand Valley State win the women’s cross country team title. Above: Parts of the course resembled a steeplechase due to three days of rain prior to the championship. 16 2014 Division II Yearbook Championships Individual Results 1st: Kendra Foley, Grand Valley St., 21:05.8 2nd: Allyson Winchester, Grand Valley St., 21:11.5 3rd: Jessica Janecke, Grand Valley St., 21:14.7 Grand Valley State cross country coach Jerry Baltes knew heading into the women’s national championship on Dec. 6 in Louisville that his team had at least three runners who could claim the individual title. Kendra Foley, Allyson Winchester and Jessica Janecke had all taken turns as frontrunner throughout the season – on a team so deep that even when Foley sat out the Midwest Region championships to rest an injured foot, the Lakers still won their 14th straight regional by more than 30 points. Baltes wasn’t shocked, then, to see sophomore Foley cross the finish line first at nationals, followed by senior Winchester in second and Janecke, a junior, in third. The championship course at Louisville’s E.P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park was shortened to avoid one messy turn, a result of heavy rain in the days leading up to the meet. The women’s race, made up of 32 teams and 25 additional individual runners, covered 5.78 kilometers – 220 meters shorter than the typical women’s race. Cool temperatures, a soft, mudsoaked ground and rain puddles made for challenging conditions. Emily Frith of Bellarmine, which hosted the meet as part of the Division II National Championships Festival, placed fourth. – Rachel Stark D i v i s i o n II M e n ’ s C r o s s C o u n t r y Team Results 1st: Adams St., 69 2nd: Grand Valley St., 127 3rd: Augustana (SD), 136 Individual Results 1st: Tabor Stevens, Adams St., 30:02.0 2nd: Aaron Dinzeo, California (PA), 30:19.3 3rd: Mike Biwott, American Int’l, 30:26.5 With an impressive record of finishing first or second in every Division II Men’s Cross Country Championships since 2003, Adams State has become the team to beat. But on a cold, gray day Dec. 6 in Louisville on a wet, muddy course, nobody was able to do it. Grizzlies senior Tabor Stevens defended his individual title on the 9.65-kilometer course – shortened because of a rain-soaked portion – crossing the line in 30:02.0. Stevens and his teammates totaled 69 points to secure the national title once again. Grand Valley State placed second with 127 points and Augustana (South Dakota) was third with 136. Adams State junior Kevin Batt, who was runner-up in the 2012 national championships, finished fourth. Senior Matthew Daniels, who sat out five weeks of the season with an injured heel, crossed the line one spot back. Individually, Aaron Dinzeo of California (Pennsylvania) was the runner-up in 30:19.3. American International’s Mike Biwott took third in 30:26.5. Stevens entered the race expecting a challenge due to the conditions. He was ready. “I was mentally prepared, knowing that maybe I’d fall or maybe I’d slip a lot,” Stevens said. “I just prepared for things that might throw me off my game.” – Rachel Stark Justin Tafoya / NCAA Photos Tabor Stevens (left) wins his second straight individual title, traversing the muddy course at E.P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park in Louisville, Kentucky. Stevens’ win helped the Adams State Grizzlies win the team title. D i v i s i o n II F i e l d H o c k e y Millersville lived up to its top defensive ranking by shutting out LIU Post, 1-0, Dec. 6 in the final of the Division II Championship Field Hockey Championship Millersville 1, LIU Post 0 at Trager Stadium on the University of Louisville campus. “I am just so happy for these guys,” said Millersville head coach Shelly Behrens, who won a national title as a player at Old Dominion. “From where this program has come when I got here seven years ago until now, winning a national title, it’s really just unfathomable.” When Behrens arrived in 2007, the Marauders were coming off a 4-14 season and had not had a winning record since 1998. Millersville reached the national semifinals a season ago before completing the journey this year. It was the 14th time this season that the Marauders held their opponents scoreless, four more than any other Division II team. Millersville also led the nation in goals-against average and was fourth in save percentage. After a scoreless first half, Millersville tallied the game’s only goal at the 46:10 mark on a penalty corner. Sarah Bomberger sent a pass to Rachel Dickinson, who smashed a shot from just inside the circle. The shot was deflected by an LIU Post defender, and Olivia Hershey was able to redirect the ball into the net. The Pioneers had several chances late in the game, including several penalty corners, but they were not able to convert due to the staunch Marauder defense and the play of goalie Lauren Sotzin. – Mark Bedics Semifinals Millersville 2, West Chester 1 (ot) LIU Post 3, Stonehill 2 Millersville’s Rachel Dickinson defends a corner during the Division II Field Hockey Championship game. Dickinson scored the only goal in the Marauders’ 1-0 win over LIU Post. Joe Robbins / NCAA Photos Championships 2014 Division II Yearbook 17 D i v i s i o n II W o m e n ’ s S o c c e r Semifinals Grand Valley St. 1*, Saint Rose 1 (2 ot) Rollins 1, Colorado Mines 0 *Advanced on penalty kicks, 3-0 Jamie Schwaberow / NCAA Photos No stranger to the Division II Women’s Soccer Championship, Grand Valley State won its second consecutive national title and fourth in six years Dec. 6 at Championship Bellarmine by beating Rollins, 3-0, and preventing the Grand Valley St. 3, Rollins 0 Tars from winning their first national championship. The experienced Grand Valley State squad got off to a fast start despite fighting a steady first-half wind, getting a goal from senior forward Jenny Shaba in the seventh minute. Shaba’s first-time finish off a serve into the box from freshman Gabriella Mencotti put the Lakers on the board. Shaba’s goal would hold as the only score until the 54th minute when sophomore Kendra Stauffer extended the Lakers’ lead with a chip shot over the head of Rollins goalkeeper Mary Spring. Stauffer’s score, just her fourth of the season, came off a breakaway bouncing ball at the top of the box. Shaba added a final goal in the 90th minute to seal Grand Valley State’s championship run. Grand Valley State has now made five championship appearances over the past six seasons. The Lakers previously won it all in 2013, 2010 and 2009, and finished as runner-up in 2011. The Lakers also reached the championship game in 2006. – Josh Looney Above: A Grand Valley State player heads away a Rollins corner kick during the Division II Women’s Soccer Championship game. Inset: The Lakers celebrate their second straight title and fourth in six years after defeating Rollins, 3-0. D i v i s i o n II M e n ’ s S o c c e r Semifinals Charleston (WV) 2, Colorado Mesa 0 Lynn 4, Quincy 1 Jamie Schwaberow / NCAA Photos Lynn’s Chris Hellmann eludes a Charleston slide tackle during the championship game. Hellmann scored a goal in the Knights’ 3-2 victory. 18 2014 Division II Yearbook Championships Championship Lynn 3, Charleston (WV) 2 Lynn struck early and often and then survived a furious secondhalf rally from Charleston (West Virginia) en route to its second Division II Men’s Soccer Championship title in three seasons. The Knights powered past the previously unbeaten Golden Eagles, 3-2, on Dec. 6 at Bellarmine on the strength of three first-half goals. Freshman Nicolas Mortensen set the tone for Lynn’s championship run with a fourth-minute strike that deflected off the hands of Golden Eagles goalkeeper Fabian Veit. Sophomore Chris Hellmann followed with a free kick score in the seventh minute. Hellmann, who contributed two goals and two assists in Lynn’s 4-1 semifinal victory over Quincy, would connect again in the 32nd minute to push Lynn’s advantage to 3-0 at the half. Junior Jules Gabbiadini put the Golden Eagles on the scoreboard in the 79th minute, igniting what would become a furious rally from Charleston over the game’s final minutes. A penalty kick score from freshman Will Roberts pulled Charleston within a goal in the 90th minute and set the stage for Lynn to defend a free kick as time expired. – Josh Looney D i v i s i o n II F o o t b a l l Semifinals Minn. St. Mankato 47, Concord 13 Colorado St.-Pueblo 10, West Ga. 7 Championship Colorado St.-Pueblo 13, Minn. St. Mankato 0 Matt Marriott / NCAA Photos Tampa’s Marissa Lisenbee (No. 9) and Meagan Burke (No. 5) block an attempt by Southwest Minnesota State’s Kenzie Beekman during the Spartans’ sweep in the championship final. D i v i s i o n II W o m e n ’ s V o l l e y b a l l Semifinals Southwest Minn. St. def. Grand Valley St., 25-19, 25-23, 25-18 Tampa def. Ark.-Fort Smith, 25-9, 25-17, 21-25, 25-17 Championship Tampa def. Southwest Minn. St., 25-14, 25-20, 25-21 Justin Tafoya /NCAA Photos Paul Browning was Colorado State-Pueblo quarterback Chris Bonner’s favorite target during the Division II Football Championship game. The two connected on five passes, including this one for the game’s only touchdown. Something had to give when the two top-ranked scoring defenses locked horns in the Division II Football Championship game December 20 at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas. In the end, Colorado State-Pueblo gave up nothing at all, blanking the high-powered offense of Minnesota State Mankato and handing the Mavericks their first loss of the season, 13-0. The Thunderwolves capped a school-record 14-1 season and gave the university its first Division II championship in any sport. The shutout was the first in the national title game since 1997 when Northern Colorado blanked New Haven, 51-0. Colorado State-Pueblo entered the game allowing a Division II-best 12.8 points per game, with Minnesota State Mankato second at 12.9. The Mavericks held a apparent advantage offensively with a rushing attack that had produced more than 240 yards per game, but the Thunderwolves held them to just 265 yards of total offense in the championship game, including a paltry 105 on the ground. The Thunderwolves’ offense came from quarterback Chris Bonner, who completed 17-of-30 passes for 191 yards and a touchdown; running back Cameron McDondle, who posted his 11th 100-yard outing in his last 12 games with 113 yards on 28 totes; and wide receiver Paul Browning, who hauled in five receptions for 84 yards and a score. Colorado State-Pueblo also blocked a field goal attempt in the second quarter that would have put Minnesota State Mankato on the board first. That led to a Thunderwolves field goal, and Bonner and Browning connected on the next drive to give Colorado State-Pueblo a 10-0 halftime lead. The two teams were the first to play a football game at Sporting Park, home of the Sporting Kansas City soccer team. After 28 years in Florence, Alabama, the championship game moved to Kansas City, Kansas. – Gary Brown Tampa won its second Division II Women’s Volleyball Championship by defeating Southwest Minnesota State in the final Dec. 6 at Bellarmine, 25-14, 25-20, 25-21. The Spartans also won the title in 2006, after which ConcordiaSt. Paul began a seven-year stranglehold on the crown. But Southwest Minnesota State knocked Concordia-St. Paul out of the tournament in the regional semifinals this year and made a Cinderella run all the way to the final match. Southwest Minnesota State actually had given the 34-1 Spartans their only loss of the season in a 3-1 conquest during a tournament in Denver in early September. But the clock finally struck midnight on the Mustangs in the championship match. Top-ranked Tampa took control early, winning the first set comfortably before having to battle the never-give-up Mustangs in the second and third sets. Southwest Minnesota State led the final set, 21-20, before Tampa tallied the last five points. American Volleyball Coaches Association Player of the Year Berkley Whaley connected on match point. Whaley had 11 kills for the match, one shy of Marissa Lisenbee’s team-high 12. Tampa’s Jessica Wagner was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player. – Gary Brown Berkley Whaley (right) hugs a teammate after Tampa wins its second Division II Women’s Volleyball Championship. Championships 2014 Division II Yearbook 19 All-for-one makes DII Festival one-for-ALL Since their inception, the Division II Festivals have tallied some impressive numbers: 7,450 17 46 183 3,000+ 2,400 student-athletes sports represented team champions from 30 institutions individual champions from 62 institutions volunteers have helped administer the Division II Festivals student-athletes have served more than 20 2014 Division II Yearbook 3,500 Championships youth and community members in host cities By Fran Reidy Division II conducted its eighth National Championships Festival this December in Louisville, the third time we’ve been fortunate enough to be in that city and experience the extraordinary hospitality that hosts Bellarmine University and the Louisville Sports Commission provide. Since the first Division II Festival in 2004, thousands of student-athletes, coaches and staff have enjoyed all that our marquee event has to offer. When people who don’t know about our event ask me what it’s like, I tell them that the competition is as intense as you would expect at any national championship, but it’s what happens outside the competition that sets the Division II National Championships Festival apart. The camaraderie, sportsmanship and hospitality are what really impress me. All the student-athletes instantly get along and make new friends. They love meeting people from different schools and different sports and sharing their personal experiences. The “standoffishness” that you might think would be prevalent at a national championship just isn’t the case at a Division II Festival. Then you throw in the opening and closing ceremonies, the student-athlete lounges, the community engagement – all of the wonderful ancillary events – and you’ve got a special recipe. Those who have participated in one of these walk away knowing they took part in something they’ll never forget. That’s certainly the goal of the hundreds of staff and volunteers who make the National Championships Festivals possible. Here’s a tip of the hat to them. And here’s a tip of the hat to all of us in Division II, as well, for continuing to support this outstanding event. We remain the only division to embrace the National Championships Festival concept, and we do it rather well, in my opinion. See you in Denver in spring 2016 for Division II Festival No. 9! Fran Reidy is the director of athletics at Saint Leo University and chair of the Division II Championships Committee. DIVISION II FESTIVAL’S PATH Division II staged its first National Championships Festival in 2004 and remains the only NCAA division to conduct the Olympic-style events that crown champions in multiple sports at one locale. The Division II Festivals foster student-athlete camaraderie, community engagement and first-rate athletics competition over several days. Next up is spring sports in 2016 in Denver, followed by Birmingham in 2017 for winter sports. Denver Louisville, Ky. 2016 Spring 2010 Fall 2012 Spring 2014 Fall Birmingham, Ala. 2013 Winter 2017 Winter The closing ceremony at the 2010 NCAA Division II National Championships Festival held at Churchill Downs in Louisville. Houston Pensacola, Fla. 2006 Fall Orlando, Fla. 2008 Spring 2009 Winter 2004 Spring NCAA Photos Archive Championships 2014 Division II Yearbook 21 ERN ANC E GOV Presidents pave strategic path for Division II By Thomas Haas, chair The Division II Presidents Council is charged with setting the strategic vision for the division. That is an appropriate mission, since as presidents we spend every day setting the strategic visions for our own institutions. As such, we take strategy seriously, whether it is for one school or an entire division. For Division II, our strategy continues to focus on providing a balanced college experience for our student-athletes by enabling their successes. While Division II will be tweaking the way it brands itself in the coming months, we are not drifting from our core mission of Life in the Balance. The council used several tools to inform our strategy in 2014. We based our direction on the Division II Strategic Plan that projects growth and initiatives through 2021, and we benefited from data obtained through the membership census conducted last year. Such valuable feedback from schools will help shape the future of our division. We also supported legislation that aligns with Division II strategic principles. Two of those proposals at this year’s Convention expand the student-athlete voice by providing the Division II Student-Athlete Advisory Committee more voting authority within the governance structure and on the Convention floor. The Presidents Council also sponsored 15 proposals that align with our strategic direction for the division, including several that are specific to obligations of membership, such as requiring full-time athletics directors and compliance officers who do not have coaching among their responsibilities. Other proposals give institutions the flexibility to make decisions that are in the best interests of their student-athletes without the constraints of bureaucratic rules. We opposed any legislation (and will continue to do so) that is in direct conflict with Life in the Balance. If that is the division’s philosophy, it should be mirrored in our legislation. Any proposal that contradicts that philosophy is not in the best interests of the division. Initiatives for 2015 include continuing the work of a project team to explore partnership opportunities with the military. The division takes pride in honoring our service men and women at our championship events, but we are interested in expanding those opportunities. Many of our institutions have longstanding relationships with nearby military communities, and we believe we as a division can learn from those success stories. We also will continue to be vigilant regarding the national landscape of college sports. In many ways, this is an uneasy time for the whole of intercollegiate athletics, as legal decisions, financial pressures and increased scrutiny from government sources influence the enterprise. While we understand the need to be aware of the changes happening in Division I and the Association overall, our initiatives in Division II such as brand development, strategic planning, health and safety efforts and championships enhancements are just as critical. The council will continue to understand the larger impact and be ready to act as needed. The environment surrounding Division I will not keep Division II from moving forward. Division II continues to provide value for schools. Our Presidents Council is determined to keep it that way under the direction of incoming chair Judy Bense of West Florida. Thomas Haas is president at Grand Valley State University. Presidents Council Roster Judy Bense West Florida January 2016 Linda Bleicken Armstrong January 2016 Robin Capehart West Liberty January 2016 Steven DiSalvo Saint Anselm January 2016* Ronald Ellis California Baptist January 2018 Deborah Ford Wisconsin-Parkside January 2017 Glen Jones Henderson State January 2019 Art Kirk Saint Leo January 2016 Michael Scales Nyack January 2017 Steve Scott Pittsburg State January 2017 Dene Thomas Fort Lewis January 2017 Leslie Wong San Francisco State January 2018 Robert Wyatt Coker January 2016 Outgoing members Jim Gaudino Central Washington Thomas Haas (chair) Grand Valley State Keith Miller Virginia State *Eligible for reappointment Justin Tafoya / NCAA Photos The Division II Presidents Council will continue to consider legislative proposals and policy changes that align with the division’s Life in the Balance mantra. 24 2014 Division II Yearbook GOVERNANCE Management Council Roster Karen Stromme (chair) Larry Marfise Robin Arnold Will Prewitt Senior associate athletics director Minnesota Duluth January 2016 Associate athletics director Holy Family January 2018 Anita Barker Athletics director Chico State January 2016 Julia Beeman Faculty athletics representative Belmont Abbey January 2018 Douglas Blais Athletics director Tampa January 2016 Commissioner Great American Conference January 2016 Kevin Schriver Faculty athletics representative Southwest Baptist January 2018 Scott Swain Athletics director Notre Dame (Ohio) January 2018 Kim Vinson Faculty athletics representative Southern New Hampshire January 2017 Associate athletics director Cameron January 2019 Carrie Bodkins Gilbert Zimmermann Senior associate athletics director Alderson Broaddus January 2018 Tonya Charland Assistant commissioner Great Lakes Valley Conference January 2018 James Crawley Faculty athletics representative Dominican (New York) January 2017 Gary Gray Athletics director Alaska Fairbanks January 2018 Kathy Heitzman Associate athletics director Bloomsburg January 2016 Bob Hogue Commissioner Pacific West Conference January 2017 Timothy Ladd Faculty athletics representative Palm Beach Atlantic January 2016 Richard Loosbrock Faculty athletics representative Adams State January 2017 Jacqie McWilliams Commissioner Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association January 2017 Athletics director Texas A&M International January 2017 Members who served in 2014 but are no longer with the council (or their institution) Clyde Doughty Jr. Athletics director New York Institute of Technology Denisha Hendricks Athletics director Kentucky State Jim Herlihy Athletics director Montevallo Outgoing members Kris Dunbar Athletics director Lake Superior State Janet Montgomery Associate athletics director West Alabama Steve Poston Athletics director Wingate Brent Wren Faculty athletics representative Alabama-Huntsville Jamie Schwaberow / NCAA Photos Management Council frames the big picture By Karen Stromme, chair As one of the largest and most representative groups in the Division II governance structure, the Management Council spends much of its time looking at the big picture. In a time when financial pressures continue to strain the mission of intercollegiate athletics at some levels, we’re working hard in Division II to walk our Life in the Balance talk. As such, the Management Council is working closely with the Membership Committee and the Presidents Council to focus on strategic membership growth. Division II reached the 300-member mark this year, and we continue to carefully plan for measured growth that aligns with our mission and resources. Part of that strategy is to help our Membership Committee continue to strengthen standards for incoming members as well as our current membership. We have established a high bar for prospective members to meet, which not only puts them in good position to succeed once they become active members, but also enhances our entire division. The council also is keeping its eye on the DII brand. Our Identity Subcommittee is collaborating with a creative firm to build on our established brand and tweak it for the future (see the related story on page 70). While the I Chose theme has served us well, Division II is now at a point where a new strategy will carry our Life in the Balance message to external audiences. We also approved more than $800,000 worth of Division II championships budget requests at our October meeting that we believe will enhance the overall championships experience for Division II student-athletes. As for what’s on the horizon, the council is continuing its focus on student-athlete health and safety, looking ahead at drug testing and education and strength and conditioning certification. We also believe there’s an opportunity for greater national media exposure for DII athletics programs. The council will review potential new opportunities for national championships and regular-season television coverage in the coming years. As chair of a large governing body, I am sometimes asked how in the world we get anything done. Having been involved in the DII governance structure for many years now, I assure them that it’s no mystery. There’s a collective sense in Division II about who we are and what we need to accomplish to honor our principles and standards. Since the Management Council represents all DII conferences and includes just about all levels of administration and faculty from the institution and conference perspective, we get a lot of passionate input on just about any topic we address. But at the end of the day, that passion funnels into a common goal, which is enhancing us as a division that represents the collegiate model. That mission will continue under the leadership of our next chair, Timothy Ladd, the faculty athletics representative at Palm Beach Atlantic. Karen Stromme is a senior associate athletics director and the senior woman administrator at the University of Minnesota Duluth. GOVERNANCE 2014 Division II Yearbook 25 Planning and Finance Committee Roster Judy Bense (chair) President West Florida January 2016 Robin Capehart President West Liberty January 2016 The Planning and Finance Committee was among groups that helped increase allocations to Divisin II championships in 2014. Planning and Finance Committee building on DII’s fiscal strength By Judy Bense, chair As the name of our committee suggests, the Planning and Finance Committee is interested in how Division II allocates resources to align with the division’s strategic direction. We don’t set that direction, but we certainly help inform it. And while the buck doesn’t stop with us, we certainly have a say in where it goes. Our priority in 2014 was to help Division II maintain a balanced budget that included opportunities for enhancements in membership growth, championships bracket expansion, increased supplemental distributions to membership and increased per diem. To be sure, that’s a lot of enhancing and increasing. But Division II is blessed with a membership and a gov- ernance structure that have proved to be good stewards of Division II resources over many years. It is because of such fiscal responsibility that we are able to continually enhance the experience for Division II student-athletes. Enhancing that experience in ways that align with the Division II Life in the Balance theme is always our No. 1 goal. That is reflected in the division’s new strategic plan that the membership will review at this Convention. Among our goals for 2015 is to review the conference grant program. We’ll be looking for efficiencies, enhancements and increased accountability with a program that has become one of the primary benefits of DII membership. With resources a premium, we will continue to plan for the future in order to keep Division II financially sound. Judy Bense is president at the University of West Florida. 2014-15 Division II Budget Division II annually receives 4.37 percent of all NCAA revenue, as guaranteed by the NCAA constitution. Most of those allocations go to championship opportunities for student-athletes. 26 2014 Division II Yearbook $22.1 million Championships $6 million Strategic Initiatives and Other Programs $5.9 million Enhancement Fund $3.2 million Conference Grants GOVERNANCE Gary Gray Athletics director Alaska Fairbanks January 2018 Timothy Ladd Faculty athletics representative Palm Beach Atlantic January 2016 Jacqie McWilliams Commissioner Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association January 2016 Steve Scott President Pittsburg State January 2017 Karen Stromme Associate athletics director Minnesota Duluth January 2016 Robert Wyatt President Coker January 2016 Outgoing members Thomas Haas President Grand Valley State Legislation Committee Roster Ann Traphagen (chair) Assistant athletics director Augustana (South Dakota) September 2015 Marty Gilbert Faculty athletics representative Mars Hill September 2017 Barbara Hannum Faculty athletics representative Hawaii Pacific September 2016 Kathleen Heitzman Senior woman administrator Bloomsburg January 2016 Kelly McLaughlin Senior woman administrator Regis (Colorado) September 2017 Kim Pate Athletics director Illinois-Springfield September 2017 Charles Pinckney Faculty athletics representative Livingstone September 2015 Outgoing members Review of financial aid on horizon By Ann Traphagen, chair The Legislation Committee is coming off a couple of big years with the adoption of the “Ease of Burden” initiative that eased compliance and financial burdens previous regulations had placed on Division II members. But as you would expect with a committee like this one, there’s never really a dead or quiet period. While we’ve been busy preparing for a hefty legislative docket this year, including four proposals from the membership regarding playing and practice seasons (see the accompanying box), we’re already focused on the 2016 Convention with a review of Bylaw 15 (Financial Aid). We’ve heard from Division II members that financial aid rules are confusing and unclear, and that the intent of some of the rules can be misapplied from one institution to another. We want to clean up and possibly reorganize the entire bylaw in order to simplify it and make it more consistent. In many ways, the review plays off the Ease of Burden initiative to make financial aid rules continue to fit within the Division II philosophy and be easier for all members to apply. At this point, we’re planning more of a cleanup than an overhaul, but we expect a few leg- islative proposals to emerge by either the 2016 or 2017 Convention, so stay tuned. I know many of you reading this have been on various NCAA committees during your career, and I imagine that like me you have relished the rewards of service that come with it. What I’ve come to appreciate with the Legislation Committee is its diversity and its tenacity to work collectively for the best overall outcome. When I look at our members, the one thing we have in common is that we don’t have much in common! What I mean by that is that each member represents his or her region, not just an institution, and we have robust discussion about all the topics we consider. It’s good to have that kind of representative conversation and still end up as a strong, unified group that works collectively for the best interests of the division. I appreciate being part of a committee with people who are aware of one another’s challenges and yet try to resolve and improve all kinds of situations that may prompt different reactions from different regions. That’s my reward, and it helps make DII the great group we are. Ann Traphagen is an assistant athletics director and the senior woman administrator at Augustana College (South Dakota). Spencer Dodd Student-athlete Saint Martin’s Curtis Campbell Athletics director Tuskegee Dean Johnson Associate athletics director Caldwell Steve Poston Athletics director Wingate Membership-driven proposals for 2015 • A llow student-athletes in sports other than football to participate in a maximum of two hours of team activities per week as part of the permissible eight hours of countable athletically related activities that may occur outside the playing season during the academic year. • E stablish the Friday before Feb. 1 (in years when Feb. 1 falls on a Saturday, Sunday or Monday) as the first competition date for baseball, golf, lacrosse, rowing, sand volleyball, softball and tennis. • Allow strength and conditioning personnel to design and conduct workout programs for student-athletes beginning June 1 through the end of an institution’s summer vacation period for fall championship sports (including golf and tennis, for those institutions that conduct the championship segment during the fall term). • Permit a maximum of two contests played as part of a conference challenge event to be exempted annually from the maximum number of contest limits in baseball, soccer, softball and women’s volleyball. GOVERNANCE 2014 Division II Yearbook 27 Bigger brackets, better experience By Fran Reidy, chair The Division II Championships Committee spent the year putting our money where our mission is. In September, we recommended allocating more than $800,000 toward enhancing participant opportunities and the overall championships experience for the division’s student-athletes. We approved bracket expansions for baseball, football, women’s golf, women’s lacrosse and men’s soccer, and squad size increases in men’s and women’s basketball, football and women’s volleyball. If those recommendations pass through the governance structure, they’ll become effective Sept. 1, 2015. Our ability to do this came from three budget buckets. Each triennial budget year (this one pertains to the 2015-18 triennium), the Planning and Finance Committee allocates $100,000 to the championships budget. On top of that, a recent rightsizing of the championships budget revealed an additional $372,500 that could be reallocated to other areas. But we really got a budget boost when sport committees proposed increasing the mileage limit for ground travel from 500 to 600 miles, which will save an additional $341,000. The Championships Committee’s budgetary allocations were made with that savings in mind. Such creative thinking from sport committees helped us get the most out of the dollars we were allocated for the coming triennium. And while Division II is generous with its championships allocations, such funding is not unlimited. That means as a committee, we have to balance our charge of enhancing student-athlete opportunities with being fiscally responsible to our member institutions. Bracket expansion is a terrific opportunity, but we realize that it comes with a price tag in other areas. In this case, it may mean not being able to alleviate some of the financial obligations for institutions whose teams and student-athletes qualify for championships competition. Obviously, that’s something we’ll want to address in the near future, but for this triennium, we felt we were best served providing another 500 student-athletes an NCAA championship experience. As for what’s next on our agenda, we’ll be focusing on increasing compensation for our officials, and making our championships selection and bracketing processes more consistent by sport and by region. Also, remember a year ago when we adopted new selection criteria? That came with a two-year implementation period, which means those criteria take effect with next year’s process. We have to remind people of that, and educate regional advisory committees about those new criteria. In all, the Championships Committee had a big year enhancing student-athlete opportunities. We hope you’ll join us in celebrating that achievement. Fran Reidy is the director of athletics at Saint Leo University. Budget requests All DII championships Regional team trophies for championships that currently do not provide them$32,600 Bracket expansion to 56 teams, reduction in travel party from 30 to 29 $215,000 $4,800 Men’s basketball Championship squad size increase (from 14 to 15) $591 Women’s basketball Championship squad size increase (from 14 to 15) $591 Football Championship squad size increase (from 54 to 58) $844 Football Bracket expansion to 28 teams Women’s golfIncrease field size of super regionals to 66 qualifiers Women’s golf Stipend for super regional head rules officials Women’s lacrosse Bracket expansion to 12 teams, and extension of the championship by one day to allow for a day off between games Women’s rowingIncrease of championship officials Men’s soccer Bracket expansion to 38 teams Softball Format change of finals to double-elimination series Men’s and women’s tennis Format change for start date Men’s and women’s indoor track and field Addition of Eagle Eye video review system Women’s volleyball Championship squad size increase (from 15 to 17) Women’s volleyballIncrease in officials fee 28 Allocation Baseball BaseballRegional umpire evaluators 2014 Division II Yearbook GOVERNANCE Fran Reidy (chair) Athletics director Saint Leo September 2015 Roberto Baroniel Student-athlete Nova Southeastern January 2016 Pat Britz Commissioner South Atlantic Conference September 2015* Kim Duyst Senior woman administrator Cal State Stanislaus September 2016 Greg Gilbert Assistant athletics director Findlay September 2016 B.J. Pumroy Athletics director Shepherd September 2017 Nate Salant Commissioner Gulf South Conference September 2015 Lisa Sweany Athletics director Armstrong September 2016 Kim Vinson Senior woman administrator Cameron January 2015* Outgoing members The Division II Championships Committee supported the following budget requests: SportItem Championships Committee Roster $292,000 $48,000 $1,600 $95,000 Kris Dunbar Athletics director Lake Superior State Timothy Ladd Faculty athletics representative Palm Beach Atlantic Claudie Mackey Faculty athletics representative Elizabeth City State David Sharp Athletics director Ouachita Baptist Susan Zawacki Senior associate athletics director New Haven *Eligible for reappointment $792 $83,000 $6,070 $2,000 $23,515 $1,350 $900 Membership Committee Roster Debbie Chin (chair) Athletics director New Haven September 2015 Dixie Cirillo Associate athletics director Colorado School of Mines September 2015 Kaye Crook Faculty athletics representative Coker September 2016 Bob Hogue Commissioner Pacific West Conference January 2017 Kevin Schriver Faculty athletics representative Southwest Baptist January 2018 Tim Selgo Athletics director Grand Valley State September 2016 Dustin Smith Athletics director Arkansas-Fort Smith September 2015 Roger Thomas Athletics director Mary September 2017 Tonia Walker Athletics director Winston-Salem State September 2016 Outgoing members Dan Mara Division II membership hits 300 By Dan Mara The Division II family continues to grow. We reached 300 members this year, welcoming Azusa Pacific University, Point Loma Nazarene University, Roberts Wesleyan College, Shorter University, Southern Nazarene University, Trevecca Nazarene University, Union University and Young Harris College to active member status. Those additions not only bolster our division competitively but also help diversify our geographic footprint. We also moved the following schools to year one of the candidacy period: California State University, San Marcos; Concordia University Irvine; Concordia University, Portland; Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (Florida); and Oklahoma Baptist University. Our growth is a reflection of the great job the Division II membership has done to make us a destination of choice, helping improve the health and notoriety we have established especially over the last decade. The Membership Committee has been a longstanding steward of our Division II family. Over the years, our group has helped establish rigorous standards for prospec- eight tive schools and actively monitored and evaluated progress as applicants strive to reach active status. The membership process has changed over the last 1015 years. Most recently, applicant institutions for 2015-16 will have to be in full compliance by year two, ensuring they are prepared before coming on board. Our committee also completed the Division II Membership White Paper, which was a project we took on to reinforce our strategic direction. The mission and composition of the committee – as well as the membership requirements this group has established – have been evolving, and like any team with a game plan, it’s important to be on the same page. The white paper was a great opportunity to better communicate our devotion to the Division II philosophy and attributes. This committee really understands, loves and respects the division, and members are doing everything they can to ensure that we welcome institutions that will be good representatives of what Division II has become. I have no doubt that the committee will continue to succeed with new leadership. New chair Debbie Chin, director of athletics at the University of New Haven, and vice chair Dustin Smith, director of athletics at the University of Arkansas, Fort Smith, will make sure this committee continues to grow, protect and enhance Division II membership. Dan Mara is commissioner of the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference. Mara completed his term as chair of the Division II Membership Committee in August. new members Commissioner Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference Roberts Wesleyan College Sue Willey Athletics director UIndy Union University Azusa Pacific University Point Loma Nazarene University Southern Nazarene University GOVERNANCE Trevecca Nazarene University Young Harris College Shorter University 2014 Division II Yearbook 29 Academic Requirements Committee works collectively to make the grade By Katie McGann, chair This is a benchmark period for Division II when it comes to academics. Last January, the membership adopted changes in initial-eligibility and progress-toward-degree standards and two-year college transfer requirements that are intended to continue enhancing student-athletes’ academic success. The package was referred to as the “Path to Graduation,” and with good reason. The Academic Requirements Committee coordinated the initiative, along with a task force of experts in the field, and worked in concert with the Division II Legislation Committee and other groups to ensure a collaborative approach. In the end, the ARC endorsed a package of options for the membership to consider, and I was proud of the time and effort the committee devoted to the cause. It was a three-part look at academic preparation and success through initial eligibility, progress toward degree and transfer eligibility. We evaluated ample data on each, but we did not review those components independently. Our challenge was to assess how all of those components work together to not only improve student-athlete academic success but also accommodate a large membership with divergent institutional goals and resources. The Academic Requirements Committee is uniquely positioned to accomplish broad-based initiatives like “Path to Graduation” because of its composition. The ARC includes presidents, faculty athletics representatives and athletics administrators at the institutional and conference level who approach academic issues from very different perspectives but work collectively to act in the best interests of Division II. Unlike other areas of legislation that focus specifically on athletics, the ARC deals with the bigger picture of higher education, but with a keen understanding of how student-athletes fit into that bigger picture. Members of this committee certainly need to know about academic standards, but they also need to have the Division II philosophy down pat and be willing to look beyond what might be in the best interests of their school, conference or region to reach the best outcome for the division. That is true with any committee service, but academics is such a key component of eligibility and access that being able to determine what is best for the division overall is critical. What I can promise the membership is that I’m confident the committee took the time to critically evaluate every component of academic success and worked together to find solutions that are right for the membership as a whole. We’ll continue to operate that way as we address the idea of “academic integrity” in the coming years. That’s a far-reaching concept, and certainly one that encompasses more than just athletics and more than just Division II, but it’s top-of-mind in higher education these days and is attracting more and more public scrutiny. The ARC will be discussing the delicate issue of what is appropriate to leave in the realm of institutional autonomy versus what role we as athletics departments and a national governing body should take in ensuring academic integrity among student-athletes. Katie McGann is the associate athletics director for compliance and student services at the University of California, San Diego. Academic Requirements Committee Roster Katie McGann (chair) Associate athletics director UC San Diego September 2015 Damon Arnold Director of academic services Grand Valley State September 2016 William Biddington Faculty athletics representative California (Pennsylvania) September 2016 Brenda Cates Faculty athletics representative Mount Olive September 2018 Tonya Charland Assistant commissioner Great Lakes Valley Conference January 2018 Gary Gray Athletics director Alaska Fairbanks January 2018 Joseph Kissell University registrar Bloomsburg September 2018 Perry Massey Faculty athletics representative Fayetteville State September 2018 Margaret Poitevint Faculty athletics representative North Georgia September 2015 Dene Thomas President Fort Lewis January 2017 Outgoing members Christopher Phenicie Vice president for enrollment Limestone Freddie Vaughns Faculty athletics representative Bowie State Keith Vitense Faculty athletics representative Cameron Alison Arlen Welch Student-athlete Christian Brothers 30 2014 Division II Yearbook GOVERNANCE Shutterstock Student-Athlete Advisory Committee Roster Justin Armstrong Indoor and outdoor track and field Wisconsin-Parkside January 2016 Roberto Baroniel Christopher Pike Football Gannon January 2017 Ayanna Tweedy Baseball Nova Southeastern January 2016 Indoor and outdoor track and field Bowie State January 2017 Vonnick Boyogueno Deron Washington Tennis Clark Atlanta January 2017 Francesca Ceppi Tennis Mount Olive January 2016 Grace F. Donovan Lacrosse Florida Southern January 2017 Laura Farleman Football Pittsburg State January 2017 Outgoing members Ellen Augsburger Soccer Regis (Colorado) Amy Berry Volleyball and indoor and outdoor track and field Georgian Court Indoor and outdoor track and field Cedarville January 2016 Spencer Dodd (chair) Christina Furrer John Steven Galanoudis Volleyball Hawaii Pacific January 2016 Corbin Greening Swimming and diving Henderson State January 2017 Kayla Jones Gymnastics Texas Woman’s University January 2016 Shanteona Keys Baseball Saint Martin’s Baseball Molloy Dylan Jackson Golf Cal State Monterey Bay Bradley Maldonado Cross country Lincoln Memorial Katelyn McElveen Volleyball and softball Coker Basketball Georgia College January 2016 Jared Merritt Celine Mangan Alison Arlen Welch Basketball Notre Dame (Ohio) January 2017 Steve Martinez Golf Texas A&M International January 2017 Katie Mnichowicz Softball Upper Iowa January 2016 Wrestling Lake Erie Volleyball Christian Brothers Jessica Wharton Tennis Palm Beach Atlantic Samantha Whittier Soccer Southern New Hampshire Peter Lockley / NCAA Photos Former Division II SAAC member Hilary Cox spoke from the floor during the 2013 business session. Pending the outcome of a proposal this year, the SAAC could have an official vote in subsequent years. SAAC seeks to strengthen the student-athlete voice By Spencer Dodd, chair The Division II Student-Athlete Advisory Committee spent the year reviewing how to enhance student-athlete voice and representation in the governance structure. Our discussions focused on the past, present and future. We feel that student-athlete input is already valued within the Division II structure, but the SAAC is exploring ways to strengthen this voice. Two legislative proposals emerged from that review that the Division II membership will vote on during this year’s Convention. One is a proposal to add two SAAC members to the Division II Management Council (with one collective vote), and another establishes the ability for the SAAC to cast a vote on behalf of Division II studentathletes on legislative items at the annual NCAA Convention. We believe both proposals represent a groundbreaking opportunity for a forwardthinking division that has always tried to act in our best interests. In addition to our legislative work, the SAAC oversaw a record number of entries submitted for the Dr. Dave Pariser Faculty Mentor Award, now in its second year. This year’s mentor award went to David Landers of Saint Michael’s College. The award is named after Pariser, a physical therapy professor at Bellarmine University who died in 2013. It honors faculty members at Division II schools for their dedicated support and mentorship of student-athletes, and for demonstrating the same commitment to Division II student-athletes’ lifelong learning, competition and wellbeing. Landers is a psychology professor who is in his 32nd year at Saint Michael’s and ninth as the FAR there. (For more about the award winner, see page 33.) It also was another record-breaking year for our Make-A-Wish efforts. The partnership really went to another level this year because of our relationship with Make-A-Wish CEO David Williams (a former tennis student-athlete at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania). The “Wish Reveal” parties became a reality on Division II campuses in 2014! And there’s more good news regarding community engagement – the Division II SAAC has initiated a pilot program partnering Make-A-Wish with our Team IMPACT initiatives, which should really make a difference in how Division II studentathletes affect people’s lives. In all, the national SAAC, as well as SAACs at the conference and institutional levels, continue to be the leadership voice for all Division II student-athletes. Spencer Dodd is a baseball student-athlete at Saint Martin’s University. GOVERNANCE 2014 Division II Yearbook 31 News Briefs university of north georgia photo Another record year means even more wishes Division II set yet another fundraising record for Make-A-Wish America during the 2013-14 academic year, raising $567,778. The fundraising total surpassed last year’s record by more than $50,000. Since Division II student-athletes on the national Student-Athlete Advisory Committee started their alliance with Make-A-Wish in 2003, the division has raised nearly $3.5 million for the national nonprofit – helping to fund more than 470 wishes for children with life-threatening medical conditions. “For 11 years, Division II student-athletes have taken the skills that have allowed them to succeed in athletics competitions, such as teamwork and self-determination, and channeled them toward helping us grant wishes for children with life-threatening medical conditions,” said David Williams, CEO and president of Make-A-Wish America. “This record donation – along with the more than $3 million raised for Make-A-Wish in previous years – will forever change the lives of the wish kids who have had their one true wish granted thanks in part to the efforts of Division II student-athletes throughout the country.” Nearly 77 percent of schools in Division II participated in the 2013-14 campaign. Of those, 141 schools exceeded their total raised in 2012-13 and consequently received matching donations through Make-A-Wish America of up to $1,000 for local Make-A-Wish chapters. The matching donations amounted to more than $75,000. Keeping with the record-setting trend, two schools – the University of North Georgia and Barry University – exceeded the $20,000 mark, a first for the division. Additionally, the Peach Belt Conference became the first Division II conference to donate more than $50,000. 32 2014 Division II Yearbook GOVERNANCE Make-A-Wish recipient Joseph Tippens is escorted to the North Georgia gym for his “signing day” ceremonies. Tippens was among dozens of Make-A-Wish children who received their “wishes” because of funds raised by Division II student-athletes. North Georgia and Barry University exceeded the $20,000 mark in 2013-14. raising the bar top ten Schoolsamount raised 1. University of North Georgia $21,413.00 2. Barry University $20,220.50 3. Edinboro University of Pennsylvania $10,767.98 4. Georgia College and State University $9,385.00 5. Delta State University $8,154.62 6. Wingate University $7,030.00 7. Indiana University of Pennsylvania $6,891.92 8. Flagler College $6,555.00 9. Saint Leo University $6,000.35 10. University of Findlay Grand Valley State University $6,000.00 $6,000.00 Top 5 Conferences Amount raised 1. Peach Belt Conference $55,293.61 2. Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference $43,400.65 3. Sunshine State Conference $36,496.58 4. Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference $30,422.54 5. South Atlantic Conference $28,133.48 Lindenwood wins 2014 DII Award of Excellence Lindenwood University claimed the Division II Award of Excellence for its efforts to raise money and awareness for the cause of Sterling Thomas, a Lindenwood football player who suffered a serious spinal cord injury in October 2012. A record number of Division II schools were competing for the award, which was presented to President Jim Evans and Athletics Director John Creer Jan. 18 at the 2014 NCAA Convention in San Diego. The award is presented for an activity or event that exemplifies excellence in any of the areas covered by the six attributes of Division II – learning, service, balance, passion, sportsmanship and resourcefulness. Lindenwood’s entry, called “Sellout for Sterling,” centered on a basketball promotion in February 2013 for a game against the University of Central Missouri when Thomas delivered a special video message at halftime. The short video documented Thomas’ rehab at a facility in Atlanta, and contained a special thank-you message. Creer said “Sellout for Sterling” was a labor of love for those who organized it. He said their many efforts included a series of promotional YouTube videos, lapel stickers and sidewalk stickers to promote the game. “It spread all over the community,” Creer said. “It was very touching. There was a big restaurant promotion called 27 for 27, and we also received donations from across the country. Schools in our conference were also very generous. When we went on the road for a football game, they were passing the hat and making a donation.” Lindenwood received a cash prize for winning the Award of Excellence, as well as a nationally televised football or basketball game on CBS Sports Network in 2014-15. Saint Michael’s takes home DII Faculty Mentor Award David Landers, the faculty athletics representative at Saint Michael’s College, is the second recipient of the Division II SAAC Dr. Dave Pariser Faculty Mentor Award. Landers will be recognized Jan. 15 during the Division II Faculty Athletics Representatives reception. The award is named after Pariser, a physical therapy professor at Bellarmine University who died in 2013. It honors faculty members at Division II schools for their dedicated support and mentorship of student-athletes, and for demonstrating the same commitment to Division II student-athletes’ lifelong learning, competition and well-being. Landers is a psychology professor who is in his 32nd year at Saint Michael’s, and ninth as the FAR. “When I became the FAR, I first wanted the faculty to better understand that our student-athletes are student-athletes, and that they do really well academically,” Landers said. “I also wanted our student-athletes to understand that faculty care about them outside of the classroom. More students are communicating with their faculty members about playing a sport and discussing their schedule, and finding solutions to potential conflicts. We’re also seeing more and more and more faculty at more and more of our athletics events.” Landers, an avid photographer who photographs many of Saint Michael’s home contests, is particularly proud of the athletics department’s Academic Success Rate, which is annually among the best in Division II. “I get credit for a lot of this, but it is really about what everyone on campus is doing,” said Landers, whose expertise is in the fields of bullying, LGBTQ issues, academic achievement and transition from high school to college. “We have faculty liaisons for each team. It is another resource for our student-athletes. Each team already has academic mentors and faculty they can turn to within different departments, but they also have this other person who probably goes to their games or a practice. It is another level of support for our student-athletes, which is what we’re all about.” Division II SAAC Chair Spencer Dodd of Saint Martin’s University said Landers is an ideal recipient of the award that honors student-athlete mentors. “Dr. Landers is an example of someone who consistently goes above and beyond to ensure the student-athlete experience is a balance of high athletics competition, academic excellence and personal growth as a college student,” Dodd said. Saint Michael’s college photo Student-athletes at Saint Michael’s appreciate David Landers’ devotion to their athletics and academic pursuits. GOVERNANCE 2014 Division II Yearbook 33 HON ORS AND AWA RDS Walter Byers Postgraduate Scholarship Karenee Demery Cal State Stanislaus soccer student-athlete, biology major The NCAA established the Walter Byers Postgraduate Scholarship Program in 1988 to award a $24,000 scholarship to one male and one female student-athlete annually in any division in recognition of outstanding academic achievement and potential for success in postgraduate study. The award is named after the NCAA’s first executive director who oversaw the Association until his retirement in 1988. Karenee Demery, a biology major and soccer studentathlete at Cal State Stanislaus, is the female recipient for 2014. She plans to use her scholarship to attend medical school. Homeschooled throughout high school, Demery’s only exposure to organized sports came through travel teams. Nevertheless, she jumped into her college studies and embraced her teammates, earning a 3.7 GPA and the praise of Warriors head coach Gabriel Bolton, who called Demery “the finest student-athlete I have ever coached in my nearly 20 years of collegiate experience.” Demery, the 2013 Capital One Academic All-American of the Year for Division II women’s soccer, was also a fourtime all-California Collegiate Athletic Association selection. Demery expects the life lessons she learned outside the classroom – including hard work, balance and perseverance – to help her compete in the rigorous medical school environment and in her future career as a physician. “I’m going to take that work ethic wherever I go,” she said. Marty bicek / California state university, stanislaus “This scholarship will be a tremendous help in achieving my goals in attending med school and to eventually become a doctor. It was not something I was expecting, but it was a huge blessing and it means a lot to me, my family, the community and the university.” Jim McKay Scholarship Bryan Baumgartner Edinboro track and field student-athlete, journalism and mass communications graduate edinboro university of pennsylvania photo “It was pretty awesome when I got the call notifying me about the scholarship. To receive an award named after a journalist such as Jim McKay is a great honor. I’m really excited to continue my development as a journalist at the graduate level.” 36 2014 Division II Yearbook honors AND AWARDS The NCAA established the Jim McKay Scholarship Program in 2008 to annually award one male and one female student-athlete a $10,000 scholarship in recognition for outstanding academic achievement and the potential to make a major contribution in the sports communication industry. The award is named after the longtime broadcaster known for his coverage of the Olympic Games and ABC’s Wide World of Sports. The male recipient in 2014 is Bryan Baumgartner, a track and field student-athlete at Edinboro. He graduated in May 2014 with a 3.70 cumulative GPA as a journalism and mass communication, print and broadcast major, while also minoring in speech communication. He was a member of the cross country and track and field teams and a Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference championship qualifier in the 5,000-meter run. He was a four-year PSAC and Edinboro Scholar-Athlete. NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship Recipients The NCAA awards $7,500 postgraduate scholarships annually to student-athletes who excel academically and athletically and who are at least in their final year of intercollegiate athletics competition. Each sports season, there are 29 scholarships available for men and 29 scholarships available for women for use in an accredited graduate program. The following includes Division II awardees for winter and spring sports in 2014, and for fall sports in 2013, since awardees for fall sports in 2014 had yet to be announced by the time this yearbook was compiled. Women’s Fall Sports 2013 Jennifer Agnew, Mary, cross country Rebecca McCoy, Winona State, soccer Janelle Strampe, South Dakota Mines, volleyball Berklee Watson, West Texas A&M, soccer Men’s Fall Sports 2013 Andisheh Bagheri, UC San Diego, soccer Phillip Klaphake, St. Cloud State, football Brendan Langford, Drury, soccer Andrew Pattock, Minnesota Duluth, football Women’s Winter Sports 2014 Courtney Brewis, Grand Valley State, indoor track and field Clarissa Enslin, California (Pennsylvania), swimming and diving Kayla Johnson, Colorado School of Mines, indoor track and field Kelsey Nuhfer, California (Pennsylvania), swimming and diving Men’s Winter Sports 2014 Matthew Baker, Maryville (Missouri), wrestling William Calkins, UC San Diego, swimming and diving Mark Frilling, Findlay, basketball Michael Kromka, Clarion, basketball Women’s Spring Sports 2014 Erin Alewine, Central Missouri, outdoor track and field Katherine Athens, Pfeiffer, lacrosse Alexandra Groeger, Central Missouri, softball Barbora Krtickova, Armstrong, tennis Hilary Lyons, Shippensburg, softball Akemi Maehama, Barry, tennis Rachel Patnoe, Southwest Minnesota State, golf Jaclyn Sileo, LIU Post, lacrosse Men’s Spring Sports 2014 Jose Avila, King (Tennessee), tennis Gregory MacAulay, Lindenwood, golf Robert Sandlin, Bellarmine, outdoor track and field Nicholas Thimesch, Drury, baseball Dustin Thomas, Edinboro, outdoor track and field Ethnic Minority and Women’s Enhancement Postgraduate Scholarship Recipients The Ethnic Minority and Women’s Enhancement Postgraduate Scholarship for Careers in Athletics programs aim to increase the pool of, and opportunities for, qualified minority and female candidates in intercollegiate athletics. The NCAA awards $7,500 scholarships annually to 13 ethnic minorities and 13 female college graduates who will be entering their initial year of postgraduate studies. Following are the Division II recipients: Degree-Completion Award Recipients The NCAA established the Division II Degree-Completion Award Program in 2001 to provide deserving student-athletes financial assistance to complete their first baccalaureate degree. To date, nearly $4 million has been given to approximately 1,000 deserving student-athletes. Of those student-athletes who have received the award since its inception, 94 percent have earned their undergraduate degree with the help of this program. Rushi Amin, Kutztown Mechela Barnes, Seattle Pacific Keeley Bateman, St. Thomas Aquinas Caysie Beetley, Washburn Tabitha Bemis, Edinboro Brittany Biddle, Wilmington (Delaware) Alexa Bordewick, Pittsburg State Lauren Boyd, Bellarmine Tasia Bristow, Glenville State Ali Brown, Cameron Amanda Burnard, Wayne State (Michigan) Kylie Burns, Alaska Anchorage Veronica Celaya, Western New Mexico Ethan Cordray, Pittsburg State Trinesha Cornell, Central State (Ohio) Trent Davison, Ferris State Andrea Dawson, Armstrong Katelyn Dedrick, Humboldt State Sarah DeShone, Ferris State Jamel Dobbs, Tuskegee Jazlyn Fuller, Tuskegee Kyra Garrison, Adams State John Gaston, Kentucky State Allison Glisch, Winona State Christine Groh, Fort Lewis Heidi Haller, Lewis Jasmine Hammon, Alabama-Huntsville Austin Hanser, Montana State Billings Bena Hanyard, Clayton State Chandler Hash, Anderson (South Carolina) Bente Heller, Alaska Fairbanks Ethan Hildebrand, Southwest Minnesota State Breanna Holleman, Southwest Minnesota State Kristen Holmes, Armstrong Natalie Huggins, Ursuline Kaley Jacobson, Winona State Katie Kerns, Central Oklahoma Alison Kusler, Northern State Carissa Kutkowski, Cal State San Bernardino Kelsey Lewis, Washburn Christen Lopez, Colorado Mesa David Lundberg, North Alabama Melissa Marshall, Colorado School of Mines Jena Matter, Mansfield Jessica Mattia, Virginia State Mary Ellen McCollum, Holy Family Jillian McDaniels, Central Washington Samantha McGaha, Lewis Chantry McMahan, Texas A&M-Commerce Lauren Michael, Drury Kristin Mihara, Cal Poly Pomona Lee Nishanian, Cal State San Bernardino Carlos Olea, St. Mary’s (Texas) Laura Patrick, Emporia State Petra Pesic, Central Oklahoma Lewis Polkow, Montana State Billings Emily Relles, Cal State Stanislaus Victoria Reuscher, Holy Family Taylor Rock, Colorado Mesa Chelsea Rodriguez, Fort Lewis Annie Rubendunst, Northern Michigan Gabriela Saravia, Fort Hays State Michelle Scannell, Mount Olive Jessica Schuck, West Chester Danielle Slivka, Wisconsin-Parkside Jordan Smith, Alabama-Huntsville Nicholas Smith, Southwest Minnesota State Rebecca Smith, East Stroudsburg Katie Sokolowski, Nebraska-Kearney Suzanne Solin, Northern Michigan Caitlin Stredde, McKendree Joylene Thompson, Fayetteville State Jordan Tippens, King (Tennessee) Halei Van Dyke, Felician Taylor Varnadore, Sonoma State Cory Veldhuizen, Malone Ashley Vellucci, Shippensburg Tricia Vogel, Emporia State Samantha Walling, Clayton State Breanna Wilson, Montana State Billings Derek Younker, Pittsburgh-Johnstown MORE INFORMATION For information about these scholarship programs and other resources, see www.NCAA.org/about/resources/grants-programs-and-scholarships. Mohamed Mohamed, Grand Valley State, track and field Bailey Vrazel, Texas Woman’s, softball honors AND AWARDS 2014 Division II Yearbook 37 ELITE 89 excellence in academics ABOUT THE AWARD The Elite 89 Award is presented to the student-athlete with the highest cumulative grade-point average participating at the finals site for each of the NCAA’s 89 championships. These are the Division II winners for 2014. Baseball Women’s Cross Country Men’s Swimming and Diving Brad Wannemuehler BethAnne Davis Luke Calkins Southern Indiana Accounting and Professional Services, 3.86 GPA Union (Tennessee) Nursing, 4.0 GPA UC San Diego Mechanical Engineering, 3.947 GPA Men’s Basketball Margaret Thorwart Mitch McCarron Metro State Human Performance and Sport, 3.86 GPA Women’s Basketball Maurissa Lester Limestone Biology, 4.0 GPA Men’s Cross Country Billy Brockmueller Sioux Falls Applied Mathematics and Computer Science, 4.0 GPA Field Hockey Millersville Communications, 3.967 GPA Football Joe Shultz Colorado State-Pueblo Engineering, 3.919 GPA Men’s Golf Andrew Ward South Carolina Aiken Business Administration, 3.914 GPA Women’s Golf Ellen Chambers Lynn International Relations, 4.0 GPA Men’s Lacrosse Todd Nakasuji Limestone Business, 4.0 GPA Women’s Lacrosse Melissa Menchella Lindenwood (Missouri) Physical Education, 4.0 GPA Women’s Rowing Emily Francis Mercyhurst Public Health, 4.0 GPA Men’s Soccer Conor Branson Charleston (West Virginia) Sports Administration, 3.97 GPA Women’s Soccer Samantha Collin Rollins Physics, 4.0 GPA Softball Courtney Albritton Valdosta State Education, 4.0 GPA honors AND AWARDS Women’s Swimming and Diving Kristin Diemer Queens (North Carolina) Finance, 4.0 GPA Men’s Tennis Renato Lombardi Barry Finance, 3.94 GPA Women’s Tennis Celina Goetti Hawaii Pacific Travel Industry Management, 3.962 GPA Men’s Indoor Track and Field Billy Brockmueller Sioux Falls Accounting, Business and Computer Science, 4.0 GPA Women’s Indoor Track and Field Madison Pines Northwood (Michigan) Accounting, 4.0 GPA Men’s Outdoor Track and Field William Shell Southwest Baptist Athletic Training, 4.0 GPA Women’s Outdoor Track and Field Bri Leeper West Texas A&M Communications, 4.0 GPA Women’s Volleyball Claire Sames Southwest Minnesota State Biology and Chemistry, 4.0 GPA Wrestling Corbin Bennetts Western State Biology, 3.945 GPA 2014 Division II Yearbook 39 ncaa woman of the year division II finalists Ellen Chambers Lynn University, Sunshine State Conference Golf student-athlete, international relations major Ellen Chambers, an Australian native, dove into American politics during her collegiate career. The four-year SAAC member joined the Lynn University College Democrats and served as vice president of the International Affairs Society for two years. Chambers volunteered at the 2012 U.S. General Election Final Presidential Debate, after which she was selected to provide a number of local, national and international interviews discussing foreign policy. She also spent two years mentoring female high school students with Lynn’s Leading Ladies. Chambers compiled a cumulative 4.0 GPA and was named the Sunshine State Conference Female Scholar Athlete of the Year as a senior. She also won the Division II Women’s Golf Championships Elite 89 Award that year. She helped her team win two Division II championships and finished fourth individually in 2013. “My experience as a collegiate golfer has shaped me into someone who looks beyond individual results, having learned the importance of working hard for the collective success of a team. I recognize now that this has been one of the greatest and most valuable lessons presented to me. I will continue throughout my life as someone who believes in giving back, as I am motivated by the opportunities that have come my way as a scholar, athlete and leader in the community.” Jackie Sileo Long Island University/LIU Post, East Coast Conference Lacrosse student-athlete, psychology major Jackie Sileo saw sports, and specifically lacrosse, as an opportunity to make a difference during her college career. She volunteered at lacrosse clinics for children of all ages, taught special needs children to ride bicycles, helped raise money to fund a middle school lacrosse team, volunteered at a local Ronald McDonald House and assisted with relief efforts after Hurricane Sandy. Sileo received Capital One Academic All-America honors in 2012, and was inducted into Psi Chi honor society in 2013 and Chi Sigma Iota Society in 2014. She currently is pursuing her graduate degree in school counseling. Sileo was a member of two Division II championship teams and a four-time All-American. She holds the Division II championship record for points scored in a tournament and was named the Most Outstanding Player at the 2012 championship. As a junior, Sileo broke the Division II all-time points and assists records. This past year, she shattered the career points record across all divisions. Sileo rounded out her storied career with 195 goals and 369 assists. 40 2014 Division II Yearbook honors AND AWARDS “I have come to realize the impact that simply reaching out and helping others can have. It is truly heartwarming to see how a simple act of kindness can go such a long way. I feel compelled to look out for the well-being of others and remain humble and selfless.” Bailey Vrazel Division II conference nominees Conferences may recognize two nominees if at least one is a woman of color or an international student-athlete. Texas Woman’s University, Lone Star Conference Softball student-athlete, kinesiology/pre-physical therapy major Bailey Vrazel is a quick study on and off the field. On the softball diamond, Vrazel’s quickness was reflected in her speed on the basepaths. The three-time National Fastpitch Coaches Association All-American holds the Texas Woman’s and Lone Star Conference career and single-season records in stolen bases and hits, in addition to the university’s single-season records in runs, walks and consecutive stolen bases. She is ranked second in Division II in career stolen bases. Her quick mind in the classroom led to a perfect 4.0 GPA and several academic honors, including the Division II softball Elite 89 Award in 2013, the 2014 Texas Woman’s Outstanding Senior Award and the 2014 Capital One Academic All-American of the Year for Division II softball. Vrazel also was a three-year member of the Texas Woman’s campus SAAC, while coaching an under-16 softball team and volunteering with the Brazosport Regional Medical Center Physical Therapy group, the Good Samaritan Nursing Home and the Angleton Rehabilitation and Wellness Center. “Throughout my undergraduate experience, I have been shaped by challenges in the classroom and on the field, as well as through my service and scholastic community experiences. Being a studentathlete has allowed me to grow into a woman who upholds her moral character, works diligently and intensely on all tasks, knows the importance of giving back, and is a leader with a purpose.” California Collegiate Athletic Association Karenee Demery Cal State Stanislaus, soccer Chelsey Jones Cal State San Bernardino, soccer Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference Elizabeth Nichols* Heartland Conference Rachel Murray* St. Edward’s, soccer Lone Star Conference Bailey Vrazel* Texas Woman’s, softball Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association Anna-Kay Edwards Erin Alewine Livingstone, outdoor track and field Danielle Williams* Johnson C. Smith, cross country/track and field Conference Carolinas Jasmine McDonald Mount Olive, basketball Central Missouri, indoor track and field Northeast-10 Conference Lauren Battista* Bentley, basketball Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Rachel Patnoe Hannah Witt Southwest Minnesota State, golf King (Tennessee), cross country/track and field Pacific West Conference East Coast Conference Academy of Art, golf LIU Post, lacrosse Great American Conference Agostina Casamento Moran* East Central, tennis Kristen Celsor Harding, basketball/track and field Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Kristen Hixon Grand Valley State, track and field Great Lakes Valley Conference Katie Kujawa Andrea Nieto Peach Belt Conference Natalie Klemann UNC Pembroke, softball Barbora Krtickova Armstrong, tennis Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Jennifer Papich Gannon, basketball Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Ashley Kuchar Fort Lewis, basketball South Atlantic Conference Rockhurst, soccer Keeley Wood Great Midwest Athletic Conference Wingate, cross country/ track and field Deanne Bradshaw* Sunshine State Conference Cedarville, soccer The NCAA established the Woman of the Year Award in 1991 to celebrate the achievements of women in intercollegiate athletics. NCAA member schools from all three divisions nominate their own woman of the year annually. Each fall, the NCAA Woman of the Year selection committee selects the Top 30 – 10 from each division – and then three finalists from each division. The NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics selects the winner from the nine finalists. Annalee Pierce Delta State, cross country Philadelphia U., lacrosse Jackie Sileo* ABOUT THE AWARD Gulf South Conference Great Northwest Athletic Conference Keri Knight Alaska Fairbanks, volleyball Ellen Chambers* Lynn, golf Akemi Maehama* Barry, tennis *Denotes Top 30 Finalist honors AND AWARDS 2014 Division II Yearbook 41 ENC ES FER CON We asked Division II conferences to pick one word that best described their achievements from fall 2013 through fall 2014. All 24 conferences chose different words, and their accomplishments are summarized in the following pages. celebration CCAA announces inaugural Hall of Fame class. In conjunction with the celebration of the California Collegiate Athletic Association’s 75th anniversary, the conference created the Hall of Fame to honor its most illustrious student-athletes, coaches, administrators and benefactors, including an Olympic gold medalist, several All-Americans and legendary coaches: • Former Cal Poly Pomona coaches Darlene May and John Scolinos • Cal State L.A.’s Nicole Duncan Chance, a former track and field student-athlete • Carmelita Jeter, a former Cal State Dominguez Hills sprinter who won three medals at the 2012 Olympics • Cal State San Bernardino’s Kim Morohunfola, a former volleyball student-athlete • Former student-athlete, coach, administrator and CCAA Commissioner Bob Hiegert CCAA celebrates its 75th anniversary. The anniversary logo for the 2013-14 academic year included a diamond-like structure with a dodecagon center and inner lettering. The diamond represented the 75th anniversary year, while the dodecagon, a 12-sided shape, represented each of the CCAA’s member institutions at the time. In addition to the 75th anniversary logo, the CCAA website featured a 75th anniversary page that contained stories covering past NCAA champions and great moments, as well as “Where Are They Now” features posted throughout the academic year. Humboldt State women’s rowing team wins CCAA’s 153rd national title. The Lumberjacks for the second time in three years hoisted the Division II trophy at Indianapolis’ Eagle Creek Park. In a grand final predicted to be a tight three-team field, the Lumberjacks claimed the championship by a single point, 16-15, over defending champions Nova Southeastern and two points better than third-place West Region rival Western Washington. All four qualifying men’s basketball teams advance from first round of NCAA West Region tournament. Cal Poly Pomona, Cal State Stanislaus, Chico State and Cal State San Bernardino all captured wins in the first round of the 2014 Division II Men’s Basketball Championship, hosted on the campus of Cal State San Bernardino. Chico State went on to win the regional and represent the CCAA in the Elite Eight. California Collegiate Athletic Association Founded: 1938 Commissioner: Mike Matthews Membership n University of California, San Diego n California State Polytechnic University, Pomona n California State University, Dominguez Hills n California State University, East Bay n California State University, Los Angeles n California State University, Monterey Bay n California State University, San Bernardino n California State University, San Marcos (Candidacy Year 1) n California State University, Stanislaus n Chico State University nHumboldt State University nSan Francisco State University nSonoma State University Joe Robbins / NCAA Photos Above: Humboldt State’s rowing team celebrates its second NCAA championship trophy in three years at Eagle Creek Park in Indianapolis. Right: Chico State topped conference rival Cal State Stanislaus to win the regional March 17, 2014, at Cal State San Bernardino. All four CCAA teams that qualified for the tournament won their first-round games. Robert A. Whitehead / Chico State University 44 2014 Division II Yearbook Conferences Progressive Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference Founded: 1961 Commissioner: Dan Mara Membership The Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference was progressive in 2014, with several new initiatives. As the conference prepares to celebrate its 10th anniversary as a Division II member in 2014-15, these initiatives continued the momentum from its first decade of success. The CACC Hall of Fame. The conference created criteria and a structure for a new Hall of Fame. The first CACC Hall of Fame class will be announced in September 2015. nBloomfield College n Caldwell University n Chestnut Hill College n Concordia College (New York) nDominican College (New York) n Felician College n Georgian Court University nGoldey-Beacom College nHoly Family University nNyack College nPhiladelphia University n Post University n University of the Sciences in Philadelphia nWilmington University (Delaware) Direct reports meeting. Several schools in the conference have athletics directors reporting to senior administrators who do not serve in the role of president. The CACC has several meetings annually with presidents and ADs, but not people in the other positions. Conference presidents urged the CACC to initiate a direct reports meeting, which brought all of those senior administrators into one room. The first meeting was in October 2014, and the feedback was outstanding, prompting another meeting to be planned for the coming year. The meeting allowed administrators to become more aware of CACC initiatives and allowed professionals to share best-practice standards. CACC/ECC SAAC Retreat. Members of the CACC office, along with the league’s SAAC representatives, will join with their counterparts at the East Coast Conference in March for a retreat that will focus on various topics, including leadership development, career planning and other issues facing student-athletes. This will be the first year the event is combined with both conferences, as student-athletes from both leagues will gain an opportunity to learn more about each other. Men’s track and field championships. The CACC will add a 15th conference championship sport in 2014-15. The league’s men’s outdoor track and field championships will be held in conjunction with the women’s track and field championships May 3 at Georgian Court in Lakewood, New Jersey. The CACC will hold its first men’s outdoor track and field championships in 2015 at Georgian Court. Photos by Ellen O’Brien Conferences 2014 Division II Yearbook 45 Resilient shutterstock CIAA inks Charlotte extension. The Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association signed a six-year agreement to conduct several postseason events in Charlotte, North Carolina. The conference also announced plans to move its headquarters there. By 2017, the CIAA plans to hold early rounds of its men’s and women’s basketball tournaments at the upgraded GoodSports and Bojangles Coliseum sports complex, with final rounds still at Time Warner Cable Arena. Broadcast agreement expands. The CIAA also signed an agreement with WSOC-TV to be the official media sponsor of the CIAA tournament in Charlotte and the home of CIAA football, basketball and the weekly program “Inside the Game.” The network will air two regular-season football games and the football championship game, along with five regular-season men’s basketball games, four men’s quarterfinal tournament games and two men’s semifinal games. Williams wins again. George Williams, the athletics director and head men’s and women’s track and field/ cross country coach at Saint Augustine’s, continued his coaching dynasty, winning team titles at the men’s indoor and outdoor track and field championships in 2013 and 2014. Since 1976, his track and field programs have won 35 national championships. Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association Founded: 1912 Commissioner: Jacqie McWilliams Membership nBowie State University n Chowan University nElizabeth City State University n Fayetteville State University central intercollegiate athletic conference photo Above: CIAA Commissioner Jacqie McWilliams (center) joins Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority CEO Tom Murray (left) and Fred Whitfield, Charlotte Hornets president and chief operating officer, in celebrating the CIAA’s extension with Charlotte (top) to host several postseason events. Right: Track and field coach George Williams has expanded Saint Augustine’s trophy collection. Conference strategic plan. The CIAA reduced a fiscal deficit by more than half in 2014 and emerged with a clean audit. 46 2014 Division II Yearbook Conferences n Johnson C. Smith University nThe Lincoln University (Pennsylvania) n Livingstone College nSaint Augustine’s University nShaw University nVirginia State University nVirginia Union University Geoff Wood photo nWinston-Salem State University Growing Larry French / NCAA Photos Growing competition. The competitiveness of Conference Carolinas continues to flourish in Division II, with Limestone winning its third Division II championship in men’s lacrosse as an example. Conference Carolinas Founded: 1930 Commissioner: Alan Patterson Membership nBarton College nBelmont Abbey College n Converse College nEmmanuel College (Georgia) (Candidacy Year 1) nErskine College nKing University n Lees-McRae College Growing academics. Conference Carolinas emphasizes educational experiences through athletics. Last year, 3,024 student-athletes were on the Conference Carolinas Presidential Honor Roll, an award that recognizes student-athletes who have earned a 3.20 grade-point average on a 4.00 scale for the semester (the award includes freshman and transfer students). The number of award recipients continues to expand each year. Growing community engagement. The Conference Carolinas Student-Athlete Advisory Committee has grown in its service to communities. SAAC not only raises money for Make-A-Wish but also hosts a wish recipient at the committee’s annual retreat. In addition, at this year’s retreat, the Conference Carolinas SAAC spent time working for Habitat for Humanity. n Limestone College n University of Mount Olive nNorth Greenville University n Pfeiffer University nSouthern Wesleyan University (Candidacy Year 2) Limestone (top) celebrates its 12-6 win against LIU Post in the Division II Men’s Lacrosse Championship at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. The Conference Carolinas Student-Athlete Advisory Committee built homes in addition to relationships at the group’s recent retreat, hosting a Make-A-Wish wish recipient (middle, right) and collaborating on a Habitat for Humanity project (right). Conference carolinas photos Conferences 2014 Division II Yearbook 47 COMMUNITY The East Coast Conference was all about community in 2014. Here are just a few of the community service and engagement events that ECC members conducted last year: Team Up To Clean Up. In the first year of this project, several ECC schools worked to beautify their local communities. All 11 member schools will participate this year. Night Out event. Three ECC members hosted a “Night Out” that gave parents a night to themselves during the holiday season by letting them drop off their kids for a fun evening with student-athletes. Casey Rafferty photo Spirit Showcase. East Coast Conference and other Long Island cheer and dance teams joined to perform at the conference’s fifth annual Spirit Showcase, proceeds from which go to Make-A-Wish. Carnival. Student-athletes who participated in the ECC’s Excellence in Community and Character Leadership Workshop helped run a carnival for about 50 children from the Miracle League of Long Island. Lacrosse clinic. ECC student-athletes helped run a lacrosse clinic at the ECC championship for the Harlem Lacrosse and Leadership program, a nonprofit organization that provides academic intervention, leadership training and lacrosse participation to at-risk youth. From top: ECC soccer student-athletes Sam Rugg (left) of Daemen and Luis Lizarzaburu of Mercy flank a young ECC carnival attendee. A MakeA-Wish recipient presents ECC Commissioner Dr. Robert Dranoff with a thank-you plaque from Suffolk County Make-A-Wish during the conference’s Spirit Showcase. Dozens of ECC student-athletes took pride in their surroundings this year by teaming up to clean up their communities. East Coast Conference Founded: 1988 Commissioner: Dr. Robert Dranoff Membership n University of Bridgeport nDaemen College n University of the District of Columbia nDowling College n Long Island University/LIU Post n Mercy College n Molloy College nNew York Institute of Technology n Queens College (New York) n Roberts Wesleyan College nSt. Thomas Aquinas College Casey Rafferty photo Dowling College athletics photo 48 2014 Division II Yearbook Conferences Great American Conference great american conference photo Founded: 2011 Commissioner: Will Prewitt Membership n University of Arkansas, Monticello n Arkansas Tech University nEast Central University nHarding University nHenderson State University nNorthwestern Oklahoma State University (Provisional) nOklahoma Baptist University (Candidacy Year 1) nOuachita Baptist University nSoutheastern Oklahoma State University nSouthern Arkansas University nSouthern Nazarene University nSouthwestern Oklahoma State University BALANCE Balance among champions. Eleven Great American Conference members have won a conference regular-season or tournament championship during the past two seasons, including nine different schools winning a title in the league’s 13 sports in 2013-14. Balance among individuals. During The Home Depot College Football Awards on ESPN, Henderson State quarterback Kevin Rodgers was selected as the fourth team captain in the 22-year history of the 2013 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team. He also finished third in the Harlon Hill Trophy voting. The Good Works Team recognizes college football players at all levels for their inspiring acts of service and the impact they have on their communities and the lives of others. Rodgers led the nation in Ouachita Baptist University photo passing yards per game in 2013 (400.6) and threw for a total 4,807 yards (fifth-most in Division II history). Balance among academics. Student-athletes representing the GAC have won the past two Conference Commissioner’s Association Central Region Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year honors, with Harding’s two-sport standout Kristen Celsor being recognized in 2013-14. Celsor recently graduated with a 3.91 grade-point average in communication sciences and disorders. She was the Daktronics NCAA Division II Central Region Player of the Year and the Great American Conference Player of the Year in basketball. She was Harding’s top high jumper, as well. Celsor earned Capital One Academic All-America honors in both sports. Conferences Clockwise from top left: Henderson State quarterback Kevin Rodgers was announced as team captain of the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team. Kristen Celsor of Harding was recognized regionally for her academic and athletics accomplishments. Ouachita Baptist wrestlers were among 11 different GAC champions in the past two years. 2014 Division II Yearbook 49 Danny reise / University of missouri-St. Louis ACHIEVEMENT Leading the way. Grand Valley State’s nine Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup titles are tops among all NCAA Division II schools. The Lakers also claimed the 2013-14 GLIAC Presidents’ Cup title for the 16th straight year, winning 11 GLIAC championships and two national team titles, in women’s cross country and women’s soccer. Doug Witte / Grand Valley State University athletics Academic achievement. Two-time NCAA Elite 89 Award recipient Madison Pines compiled a 4.0 GPA in accounting and is now in graduate school. Pines, a two-sport studentathlete (soccer and track) at Northwood (Michigan), earned the award in 2014 for women’s indoor track and field, running the mile at the NCAA championships. The GLIAC has amassed 10 Elite 89 winners in the award’s history. Top-flight facilities. Saginaw Valley State finished construction in September on a $14 million athletics field house. The structure features 80 yards of turf, suitable for football and soccer practice, along with a 300-meter track. The field house is one of only two of its kind in Division II. The other is at fellow GLIAC member Grand Valley State. Saginaw Valley State University athletics media relations photo From top: Wayne State’s softball team provided plenty of happy moments in 2014. Grand Valley State student-athletes, coaches and staff celebrated the school’s ninth Directors’ Cup presentation. The new field house at Saginaw Valley State is another showcase facility in the GLIAC. 50 2014 Division II Yearbook Championship-level play. The Wayne State (Michigan) softball team, after winning its second NCAA Midwest Super Regional title in the past five years, qualified for the NCAA Division II Women’s Softball Championship after a recordsetting year in which the team won 19 straight games and compiled the second-most wins in school history (46). And at the 2014 Fall Festival, Grand Valley State won titles in women’s soccer and women’s cross country (along with sweeping the top three spots in the individual standings). Conferences Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Founded: 1972 Commissioner: Dell Robinson Membership n Ashland University n Ferris State University n University of Findlay n Grand Valley State University nHillsdale College n Lake Erie College n Lake Superior State University n Malone University n Michigan Technological University nNorthern Michigan University nNorthwood University (Michigan) nOhio Dominican University nSaginaw Valley State University nTiffin University n Walsh University n Wayne State University (Michigan) eNHANCE Great Lakes Valley Conference Founded: 1978 Commissioner: Jim Naumovich Membership nBellarmine University nDrury University n University of Illinois Springfield n University of Indianapolis n Lewis University n Maryville University nMcKendree University n Missouri S&T n University of Missouri-St. Louis n Quincy University n Rockhurst University nSaint Joseph’s College n University of Southern Indiana nTruman State University David Richard / NCAA Photos The Great Lakes Valley Conference enhanced the experience for its members by: n William Jewell College n University of Wisconsin-Parkside Pioneering the GLVC Sports Network, an inclusive digital streaming platform designed to enhance the profile of all 20 GLVC championships and the league’s 16 member institutions. From top: The Drury women’s and men’s teams celebrate their twin titles at the Division II Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships in Geneva, Ohio. The new GLVC style guide instructs member schools to dress their facilities in style. GLVC members made a splash in the pool, participating in the league’s first conference championships. Creating the GLVC Style Guide, a document given to all 16 conference members showcasing how and where the GLVC mark should be placed on apparel and in facilities to enhance the league’s brand on campuses. Conducting the Senior Woman Administrator GLVC Championship Initiative, a program funded through conference grant dollars to enhance opportunities and professional development for the league’s senior woman administrators by allowing them to travel to GLVC championships throughout the 2013-14 season and participate in event management, student-athlete experience, and post-event surveys. Great lakes valley conference Photos Hosting the inaugural GLVC Swimming and Diving Championships, which provided a memorable first (and first-class) impression for the conference’s men’s and women’s swimming and diving programs. Some even reported that the enhanced student-athlete experience was more rewarding than that of the NCAA championships, where GLVC-member Drury claimed both the men’s and women’s national team titles. Conferences 2014 Division II Yearbook 51 EMERGENT And they’re off. After serving a provisional year, 2013-14 was a significant step forward for the Great Midwest Athletic Conference as the NCAA officially recognized the league as active. The conference also added four institutions (Alderson Broaddus, Davis & Elkins, Ohio Valley, Salem International) in 2013-14, increasing overall membership to nine active schools. Tracy Proffitt photo Great Midwest Athletic Conference photo Scott Huck photo (From top) Cedarville pitcher David Ledbetter joined his twin brother Ryan as first-year draft picks by the Texas Rangers. Community engagement projects for the G-MAC Student-Athlete Advisory Committee in 2014 included a food drive. Making the grade. In the third year of the Division II Presidents’ Award for Academic Excellence program, Cedarville and Davis & Elkins were among 27 schools across the country with Academic Success Rates over 90. Making their presence known. Cedarville’s men’s cross country team competed at the NCAA Division II championships in Spokane, Washington. Matt Brooker became the G-MAC’s and Yellow Jackets’ first NCAA All-American in any sport. Cedarville twin pitchers, David (3rd round) and Ryan Ledbetter (19th round), were both selected in the 2013 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft by the Texas Rangers. Deanne Bradshaw (Cedarville women’s soccer) was a 2014 NCAA Woman of the Year Top 30 honoree. Lending a helping hand. The G-MAC’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee started the Athletes Collecting Toiletries in Service (ACTS) last year. In support of ACTS, each school contributed boxes of items after posting collection spots throughout the campus. The GMAC SAAC was also active with the Healing Center in Cincinnati. Cedarville runners posted a 15th-place finish at the 2013 Division II Men’s Cross Country Championships. 52 2014 Division II Yearbook Conferences Great Midwest Athletic Conference Founded: 2012 Commissioner: Tom Daeger Membership n Alderson Broaddus University n Cedarville University n Central State University nDavis & Elkins College nKentucky Wesleyan College nOhio Valley University nSalem International University nTrevecca University n Ursuline College fantastic Erik Holladay / NCAA Photos Great Northwest Athletic Conference Founded: 2001 Commissioner: Dave Haglund Membership n University of Alaska Anchorage n University of Alaska Fairbanks n Central Washington University n Concordia University Portland (Candidacy Year 1) n Montana State University Billings nNorthwest Nazarene University nSaint Martin’s University nSeattle Pacific University nSimon Fraser University n Western Oregon University n Western Washington University GNAC on ROOT Sports. Seven Great Northwest Athletic Conference men’s and women’s basketball games were televised on ROOT Sports during the 2013-14 season, bringing a great brand of Division II basketball to millions of fans in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, Alaska and British Columbia. Western Washington guard Richard Woodworth provided fans with a fantastic finish Feb. 22, hitting a shot from half court at the buzzer to beat arch-rival Central Washington, 94-91. GNAC hosts Women in Sports Seminar. The GNAC hosted a Women in Sports Career Seminar May 17 at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle. More than 75 women interested in pursuing careers in athletics had a fantastic time networking and gaining career advice from current female athletics professionals, including keynote speaker Kimberly Ford, NCAA director of minority inclusion. GNAC student-athletes enjoy academic success. Seattle Pacific was among 27 schools to receive the third annual Division II Presidents’ Award for Academic Excellence. Conference-wide, 119 student-athletes earned the GNAC Faculty Athletics Representative Scholar-Athlete award, posting GPAs of 3.85 or better. GNAC student-athletes enjoy athletics success. GNAC teams reached the 2013 national semifinals in men’s and women’s soccer (Simon Fraser and Western Washington, respectively), and Alaska Anchorage’s women finished fourth in the 2013 NCAA Division II Women’s Cross Country Championships hosted by the GNAC in Spokane, Washington, for the second time in three years. GNAC athletes also had some fantastic performances at the 2014 NCAA Division II Women’s Outdoor Track and Field Championships as Seattle Pacific’s McKayla Fricker won the 800 meters and Western Washington’s Bethany Drake and Katie Reichert finished 1-2 in the javelin – just one inch apart. And Western Washington’s Katelyn Steen placed fifth at the 2014 NCAA Division II Women’s Cross Country Championships. Conferences Dan Levine photo Nick Gonzales Photo From top: McKayla Fricker of Seattle Pacific wins the national title in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:06.18. GNAC staff members enjoyed their time at the Women in Sports Seminar in Seattle. From left are Assistant Commissioner Bridget Johnson Tetteh, intern Nick Schmidt, Commissioner Dave Haglund and Assistant Information Director Evan O’Kelly. Fans mob Western Washington’s Richard Woodworth after he hits a miracle half-court shot to beat Central Washington, 94-91, in a ROOT Sports regionally televised game. 2014 Division II Yearbook 53 evolve GSC-TV Game of the Week moves to ESPN. The Gulf South Conference celebrated the 10th year of its Football Game of the Week package by inking an exclusive agreement to broadcast on ESPN3. Membership growth. Gulf South Conference membership has been evolving since 2011 by serving as the sponsoring conference for four transitional institutions. Shorter and Union (Tennessee) became official NCAA and Gulf South members in 201415. Lee is on track to follow in 2015-16 and Mississippi College in 2016-17. The Gulf South also bolstered its membership by adding associate members. Florida Tech became the only Division II football school in the state of Florida in 2013. Spring Hill is on track to become an official associate member in men’s and women’s soccer and women’s golf in 2016-17. Leadership transition. The Gulf South Conference selected Matt Wilson (right, top) as the seventh commissioner of the league on March 27, 2014. Wilson replaces the longest-standing commissioner in Gulf South history, Nate Salant (right, bottom), who was also inducted into the Gulf South’s inaugural Hall of Fame class announced this year. Gulf South Conference Founded: 1970 West Florida’s Bruno Savi gets fired up during his singles match with Petr Michnev. West Florida defeated Hawaii Pacific, 5-3, to win the national title. Matt Marriott / NCAA Photos Commissioner: Matt Wilson Membership n University of Alabama in Huntsville n Christian Brothers University nDelta State University n Lee University (Provisional) n Mississippi College (Candidacy Year 2) n University of North Alabama nShorter University n Union University Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and Make-A-Wish. The Gulf South SAAC participated in a community engagement project coordinated with Children’s of Alabama. The Gulf South initiated a monthly SAAC Spotlight Series with video interviews/features of its members. The Delta State SAAC turned in a record Make-A-Wish campaign, ranking fifth in all of Division II. nValdosta State University n University of West Alabama n University of West Florida n University of West Georgia Shorter (pictured) and Union (Tennessee) (right) became official NCAA and Gulf South members in 2014-15. (left) shorter university photo; (above) Union university photo 54 2014 Division II Yearbook Conferences engaged Wes Koenig was one of two baseball student-athletes from St. Edward’s to be recognized as All-Americans. st. edward’s university photo Heartland Conference Founded: 1999 Commissioner: Tony Stigliano Membership n University of Arkansas, Fort Smith nDallas Baptist University n Lubbock Christian University (Provisional) nNewman University nOklahoma Christian University (Provisional) nOklahoma Panhandle State University n Rogers State University (Candidacy Year 2) nSt. Edward’s University nSt. Mary’s University (Texas) nTexas A&M International University n University of Texas of the Permian Basin Heartland Conference overall GPA continues to rise. The conference saw a 2.1 percent increase overall in student-athletes’ GPAs. The Heartland Conference promotes academic success by distributing NCAA enhancement funds, creating a successful balance between athletics and academics, adjusting regular-season and championship schedules to minimize missed class time, and recognizing academic success. Oklahoma Christian cross country coach Wade Miller (left, in hat) says Heartland Conference studentathletes “are not only engaged in the sports they play but also in their academics, their college community, and their community they live in, as well.” Miller’s cross country teams made a preseason trip to the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, bagging 3,000 pounds of frozen vegetables. St. Edward’s women’s basketball team spends afternoon at children’s hospital. The Hilltoppers took time to visit with children at the Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas. Members from the team greeted patients, played board games and participated in activities with the young patients from the hospital. Regional Champions. St. Mary’s (Texas) scored five runs in the top of the ninth inning to beat Angelo State, 7-3, to win the NCAA Division II South Central Region 2. And Arkansas-Fort Smith’s women’s volleyball team won the 2014 South Central Region and advanced all the way to the national semifinals. Heartland Conference baseball teams reap postseason awards. The Heartland Conference had eight players named to All-America teams or honorable mention lists by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association and Daktronics Baseball. The teams consist of players from St. Edward’s, St. Mary’s, Lubbock Christian and Oklahoma Christian. Wes Koenig and Brannon Easterling from St. Edward’s were named to both teams, Koenig as a first-team selection on both squads and Easterling as a first-teamer on the NCBWA unit and a second-team selection for Daktronics. Conferences St. Edward’s women’s basketball studentathletes spent an afternoon in January 2014 entertaining young patients at the Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas. Heartland conference photos 2014 Division II Yearbook 55 Andres Alonso / NCAA Photos premier Lone Star Conference schools and student-athletes provided premier performances in the past year, including: West Texas A&M, whose softball team won the 2014 Division II title with a thrilling 3-2 victory over Valdosta State in the championship game. Brittany Gehle provided the winning margin for the Lady Buffs with a three-run homer with two outs in the top of the seventh inning. West Texas A&M also was runner-up in women’s basketball and a semifinalist in women’s volleyball. The Lady Buffs were the only Division II school to participate in all three championships. Erik Holladay / NCAA Photos From top: The ecstatic Lady Buffs greet Brittany Gehle (No. 11) after her homer in the last inning gave West Texas A&M its first Division II softball crown. Texas A&M-Kingsville’s Jeron Robinson tied a Division II record in the high jump and was named Field Athlete of the Year by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association. Meanwhile, teammate Tim Price won both sprints to compile the highest point total of any participant in the 2014 outdoor championships. 56 2014 Division II Yearbook Texas Woman’s graduate Bailey Vrazel was selected as a Top 9 finalist for the 2014 NCAA Woman of the Year. She was a star on the softball diamond, finishing her career with 246 stolen bases, the third-most by any player in the history of NCAA softball (all divisions). Vrazel also led the Pioneers in runs (54), hits (73) and assists (107) in 2014 while posting a .376 batting average and .945 fielding percentage. She received the NCAA Elite 89 award for academic achievement in 2013 and also was named the 2014 Capital One Academic All-America of the Year in softball. Buoyed by individual event titles from Tim Price and Jeron Robinson, Texas A&M-Kingsville finished fourth at the 2014 Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Price won both the 100- and 200-meter dashes, while Robinson prevailed in the high jump with a Division II-record-tying clearance of 7 feet, 6½ inches (2.30 meters). Conferences Lone Star Conference Founded: 1931 Interim commissioner: Jay Poerner Membership n Angelo State University n Cameron University nEastern New Mexico University n Midwestern State University nTarleton State University nTexas A&M UniversityCommerce nTexas A&M University-Kingsville nTexas Woman’s University n West Texas A&M University success Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association Founded: 1912 Commissioner: Bob Boerigter Membership n University of Central Missouri n University of Central Oklahoma nEmporia State University n Fort Hays State University The Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association won three national titles in the 2013-14 academic year: • Football, Northwest Missouri State • Men’s basketball, Central Missouri • Women’s outdoor track and field, Lincoln (Missouri) The MIAA experienced continued academic success: • More than 2,000 MIAA student-athletes had GPAs greater than 3.0 in 2014 • 252 had GPAs greater than 3.5, and 86 had perfect 4.0s The MIAA and its members were selected to host several Division II and National Collegiate championships: • Division II football in Kansas City, Kansas, in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 (hosted by the MIAA) • Division II men’s and women’s soccer in Kansas City, Missouri, in 2016 and 2017 (hosted by the MIAA) • Division II softball in Oklahoma City in 2015 (hosted by Central Oklahoma) • Division II indoor track and field in Pittsburg, Kansas, in 2016 and 2018 (hosted by Pittsburg State) • National Collegiate Women’s Bowling Championship in 2015 and 2018 (hosted by Central Missouri) • National Collegiate Women’s Ice Hockey Championship in 2017 (hosted by Lindenwood) From left: Northwest Missouri State student-athletes show their pride after defeating Lenoir-Rhyne, 43-28, to win the 2013 football championship. Janae Johnson of Lincoln (Missouri) anchors the winning team in the 400-meter relay during the outdoor championships. n Lincoln University (Missouri) nLindenwood University n Missouri Southern State University n Missouri Western State University n University of Nebraska at Kearney nNortheastern State University Justin Tafoya / NCAA Photos Erik Holladay / NCAA Photos nNorthwest Missouri State University n Pittsburg State University nSouthwest Baptist University n Washburn University TJ White of Central Missouri drives to the basket en route to beating West Liberty, 84-77, to capture the Division II Men’s Basketball Championship. Joe Robbins / NCAA Photos Conferences 2014 Division II Yearbook 57 historic This year was historic for the Mountain East Conference, as it was the first of active status for the league in Division II. Commissioner Reid Amos said, “Any first year of a conference is going to automatically be historic, but the outstanding performances of our members at the regional and national level made this truly a special year.” Several Mountain East members had teams that had historic seasons, as well: Adam Zundell / Mountain east conference Mountain East Conference Founded: 2013 First-time finalists. West Liberty’s men’s basketball team played for a national championship for the first time in school history in that sport. The Hilltoppers went 31-4 on the year, including a 20-2 record in MEC play that earned them the inaugural regular-season league title. They went on to win the Atlantic Regional by defeating top-seeded East Stroudsburg on its home court, 89-82. Victories over Drury and South Carolina Aiken earned West Liberty its first appearance in the national championship game, where it fell, 84-77, to Central Missouri. Charleston (West Virginia) also made its first championship game appearance in men’s soccer. The Golden Eagles were unbeaten during the 2014 regular season and through the postseason until losing to Lynn in the national final. Commissioner: Reid Amos Membership n University of Charleston (West Virginia) n Concord University n Fairmont State University n Glenville State College Wheeling Jesuit’s women’s volleyball team advanced further in the NCAA tournament than ever before, making it all the way to the 2013 national semifinals before losing to eventual champion Concordia-St. Paul. The Cardinals finished the year 38-6, including a perfect 16-0 record in conference play. Wheeling Jesuit hosted and won the NCAA Regional, and Jenna Pew was named MEC and Daktronics Atlantic Region Player of the Year, while also earning All-America honors from the American Volleyball Coaches Association. Wheeling Jesuit University photo Top: All-America guard Cedric Harris led West Liberty to its first national championship game. Above: Wheeling Jesuit’s volleyball team advanced to the 2013 national semifinals. Below: Shepherd celebrates its 2013 conference title. nNotre Dame College (Ohio) nShepherd University n Urbana University nThe University of Virginia’s College at Wise (Provisional) Shepherd’s football team notched a perfect 10-0 record in the 2013 regular season and earned the top seed in Super Region 1. The Rams hosted the regional final against West Chester, but fell, 28-7. It was the first time Shepherd had hosted that game, and it marked the Rams’ second-deepest run in Division II playoff history. Shepherd also recorded its first postseason shutout in school history with a 7-0 win over Winston-Salem State, and the Rams finished the year ranked first in rushing defense (48.3 yards per game) and second in total defense (244.8). n West Liberty University n West Virginia State University n West Virginia Wesleyan College n Wheeling Jesuit University Shepherd University Photo 58 2014 Division II Yearbook Conferences Bentley’s Lauren Battista received national accolades for her athletics and academic achievements. Harry Scull Jr. / NCAA Photos DISTINCTION Northeast-10 Conference Distinction in competition. Teams from the Northeast-10 Conference won national championships in women’s basketball and women’s lacrosse in 2014, bringing the total for the 2013-14 academic year to three team championships. Northeast-10 members also captured individual national titles in swimming (Southern Connecticut State’s Raymond Cswerko) and in track and field (Southern Connecticut State’s Nick Lebron) in 2014. The conference captured ten regional crowns in the 2013-14 academic year and in fall 2014 (two in women’s soccer, women’s volleyball and field hockey, and one each in men’s soccer, men’s and women’s basketball, and women’s lacrosse) and advanced to the national semifinals in seven of those. Founded: 1979 Commissioner: Julie Ruppert Membership n Adelphi University nAmerican International College n Assumption College nBentley University n Franklin Pierce University Nick Lebron n Le Moyne College n Merrimack College n University of New Haven n Pace University nSaint Anselm College nSaint Michael’s College nThe College of Saint Rose nSouthern Connecticut State University nSouthern New Hampshire University nStonehill College Northeast-10 members believe in their relationships with Team IMPACT, as evidenced by the cover of the Fall 2014 issue of NCAA Champion magazine. Raymond Cswerko Distinction in the community. Northeast-10 members made 56 matches on 14 member campuses with Team IMPACT, the nonprofit organization seeking to improve the quality of life for children facing life-threatening and chronic illnesses by matching the courageous kids with local college athletics teams. The 56 matches led all conferences in all three divisions, and they speak volumes about the commitment that NE-10 student-athletes have to impact their local communities. Academic distinction. Of the 276 Northeast-10 teams competing in 23 conference sports, 69 percent (190) earned team GPAs above 3.0 in 2013-14. Additionally, more than 3,100 of the conference’s 5,500 student-athletes achieved individual GPAs above 3.0 in 2014. In the Academic Success Rate release from October 2014, six NE-10 institutions have a six-year ASR average of 90 or above, and four (Saint Michael’s, Bentley, Stonehill and Assumption) are ranked in the top 10 in Division II. Balanced distinction. Lauren Battista, a basketball student-athlete from Bentley, was not only the Honda Division II Athlete of the Year but also the Capital One Academic All-America of the Year in her sport. Conferences 2014 Division II Yearbook 59 experience Sharing the experience. Minnesota State Mankato hosted more than 50 representatives from all 16 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference institutions at the conference’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee Summit. Representatives helped with building repairs and landscaping at a recreation center for people with intellectual disabilities. Caring for the experience. Southwest Minnesota State collected the most pledges, and Upper Iowa collected the highest percentage of pledges from basketball fans in attendance during the second annual “It’s a Slam Dunk Don’t Drive Drunk” campaign. Southwest Minnesota State men’s basketball coach Brad Bigler helped bring the campaign to NSIC schools to encourage students and fans not to drive drunk. In 2012, Bigler’s 5-month-old son, Drake, died in an accident caused by a drunk driver. A blueprint for the experience. The NSIC launched a community engagement campaign during its postseason basketball tournament in 2014 that will serve as a blueprint for Division II. It was the first of a three-year agreement with the city of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, to host the tournaments at the newly built Sanford Pentagon, and NSIC schools banded together to include and entertain dozens of community stakeholders. Experience counts. The NSIC’s ability to host championships made an impact on NCAA officials, who awarded eight Division II championships to the city of Sioux Falls and one to Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for upcoming seasons. Sioux Falls will be the home of championships for men’s basketball in 2017 and 2018, women’s basketball in 2015, 2016 and 2018, women’s volleyball and wrestling in 2016, and outdoor track and field in 2018. The 2018 wrestling championships will be in Cedar Rapids. Conrad Schmidt / NCAA Photos Experience in competition. Concordia-St. Paul won its seventh straight Division II Women’s Volleyball Championship in 2013. Minnesota State Mankato was runner-up in the 2014 Division II Football Championship, and Southwest Minnesota State advanced to its first volleyball championship final at the 2014 DII Fall Festival. Experience in the classroom. A total of 96 graduating senior student-athletes, each with a cumulative GPA of 3.75 or higher, earned the NSIC Myles Brand All-Academic with Distinction Award. Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Founded: 1932 Commissioner: Erin Lind Membership n Augustana College (South Dakota) nBemidji State University n Concordia University, St. Paul n University of Mary n University of Minnesota Crookston n University of Minnesota Duluth n Minnesota State University, Mankato n Minnesota State University Moorhead n Minot State University nNorthern State University n University of Sioux Falls nSouthwest Minnesota State University nSt. Cloud State University n Upper Iowa University n Wayne State College (Nebraska) n Winona State University nothern sun intercollegiate conference photo Above: Concordia-St. Paul won over BYU-Hawaii in three straight sets to claim the 2013 Division II Women’s Volleyball Championship title. Middle: The conference’s annual SAAC Summit featured both camaraderie and community. Right: The NSIC’s community engagement activities during the conference’s postseason basketball tournaments were a big hit. nothern sun intercollegiate conference photo 60 2014 Division II Yearbook Conferences Diversity Azusa Pacific student-athletes, coaches and staff celebrate the school’s acceptance as an active Division II member. azusa pacific university photo Pacific West Conference Azusa Pacific and Point Loma Nazarene further diversified the PacWest by taking the final step in their journeys to active Division II membership. The two additions bring the PacWest roster to 11 full members competing in 15 sports during the 2014-15 academic year. Founded: 1992 Commissioner: Bob Hogue Membership n Academy of Art University n Azusa Pacific University nBrigham Young University, Hawaii n California Baptist University Tina Yang’s participation in the women’s golf championships helped California Baptist win the Commissioner’s Cup. PacWest member Hawaii Pacific continued its tennis success at the NCAA championship, with the men’s team reaching the championship match and the women advancing to the semifinals. grant halverson / NCAA Photos nChaminade University nDixie State College of Utah nDominican University of California In one of the tightest races in conference history, California Baptist won the 2013-14 PacWest Commissioner’s Cup by less than half an average point over Azusa Pacific. The Lancers used three conference championships and seven additional top-three finishes to win their second Commissioner’s Cup since joining the league in 2011-12. n Fresno Pacific University (Provisional) n University of Hawaii at Hilo nHawaii Pacific University nHoly Names University (Candidacy Year 2) nNotre Dame de Namur University n Point Loma Nazarene University Dominican (California) received the PacWest Academic Achievement Award for an unprecedented fifth consecutive season. The Penguins displayed their prowess in the classroom once again with the highest cumulative grade-point average in PacWest history (3.41). In the seven years the conference has recognized the highest program GPA for the academic year, Dominican has been at the top of the list five times. Thibaud Berland was part of a Hawaii Pacific team that reached the Division II men’s final. Matt Marriott / NCAA Photos Conferences 2014 Division II Yearbook 61 leadership Ken Gerlinger / Peach belt conference Peach Belt Conference Founded: 1990 Commissioner: Dave Brunk Dyane Busse / Flagler Membership n Armstrong State University Nick Moeller / university of Montevallo University of north georgia Athletics Communications Above, middle: Flagler Athletics Director Jud Damon (right) receives the Bob Frederick Award for sportsmanship. Above: North Georgia Athletics Director Lindsay Reeves (left), Make-A-Wish recipient Joseph Tippens (center) and North Georgia men’s basketball coach Chris Faulkner stage a “signing day” during a Make-A-Wish event. Leadership in the classroom. Peach Belt Conference student-athletes earned four NCAA Degree-Completion Scholarships, 11 Academic All-America Awards and an NCAA Elite 89 Award. In addition, a record 1,449 were named to the conference’s Presidential Honor Roll. Leadership in events. The Peach Belt was the first conference office to serve as sole host – without campus involvement – of a national championship event by hosting the Division II Men’s and Women’s Soccer Championships in 2012 and 2013. Leadership in character. Flagler’s Jud Damon was presented with the Bob Frederick Award for sportsmanship, and North Georgia’s Lindsay Reeves was named the National Association of Collegiate Women Athletics Administrators Division II Administrator of the Year. In addition, PBC student-athletes were featured twice in NCAA Champion magazine, including as the cover story in the Winter 2013 issue and again as a feature in the Summer 2014 edition. Leadership in Giving. The PBC led the nation in Make-A-Wish giving in 2013-14, setting a Division II record with $55,293 raised. North Georgia led all schools with $21,413, while Georgia College was fourth in the nation and Flagler eighth. 62 2014 Division II Yearbook Conferences n Clayton State University n Columbus State University n Flagler College n Francis Marion University n Georgia College n Georgia Regents University nGeorgia Southwestern State University n Lander University n University of Montevallo n University of North Carolina at Pembroke n University of North Georgia n University of South Carolina Aiken nYoung Harris College passion Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Founded: 1951 Commissioner: Steve Murray Membership n Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania n California University of Pennsylvania n Cheyney University of Pennsylvania n Clarion University of Pennsylvania nEast Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania nEdinboro University of Pennsylvania n Gannon University nIndiana University of Pennsylvania nKutztown University of Pennsylvania n Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania n Mansfield University of Pennsylvania nMercyhurst University n Millersville University of Pennsylvania Passion for excellence. Kutztown’s Andre Reed became the first player from the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Reed played for the Golden Bears from 1981 to 1984 and spent 16 years in the NFL, including 15 seasons with the Buffalo Bills. He finished his NFL career with 951 receptions for 13,198 yards and 87 touchdowns while guiding the Bills to four Super Bowls. Jake Vyner photo Passion for the classroom. The PSAC finished the 2013-14 academic year with 57 Capital One Academic All-Americans, more than any other Division II conference. It was the third straight academic year that the PSAC earned at least one spot on all 12 Academic All-America teams. Two Clarion female athletes were named Academic All-Americans of the Year in their sports: Hannah Heeter, volleyball, and Kristin Day, women’s at-large (women’s swimming/diving). Passion for charity. PSAC institutions combined to raise a record $43,400 during the 2013-14 academic year for Make-A-Wish. The total is the second highest among Division II conferences. Edinboro raised $10,767.98 to rank third among 245 participating institutions, while Indiana (Pennsylvania) ranked seventh with $6,891.92. The Fighting Scots will once again get to reveal a wish to a child with a life-threatening medical condition because the school raised more than $8,000. Last February, Edinboro granted a wish to 15-year-old Austin Hawk. Passion for sport. In 2013-14, 14 of 18 PSAC member institutions won a conference title, while PSAC schools earned 14 NCAA regional championships. Additionally, PSAC teams clinched 52 of a possible 96 (54 percent) NCAA regional playoff positions. In men’s and women’s swimming, men’s and women’s indoor and outdoor track and field, men’s and women’s cross country, women’s golf, and wrestling, 124 PSAC student-athletes qualified as individuals for the 2013-14 NCAA championship in their respective sport, resulting in 13 individual national titles. Millersville claimed the 2014 NCAA DII field hockey title, following Shippensburg’s 2013 NCAA crown and West Chester’s back-to-back DII titles in 2011 and 2012. clarion university of pennsylvania photo From top: Edinboro raised enough money for Make-A-Wish in 2013 to grant a wish for 15-year-old Austin Hawk. Austin received a pit bull puppy named Layla. Hannah Heeter (center), who played volleyball and basketball at Clarion, was named Capital One Academic All-American of the Year in volleyball. n University of Pittsburgh, Johnstown nSeton Hill University nShippensburg University of Pennsylvania nSlippery Rock University of Pennsylvania n West Chester University of Pennsylvania Former Kutztown star receiver Andre Reed landed in the Pro Football Hall of Fame after racking up stellar stats in college and the NFL. David Johnson / Kutztown University Relations; (right) Kutztown University photo Conferences 2014 Division II Yearbook 63 excellence Tabor Stevens of Adams State races to a first-place finish during the 2013 Division II Men’s Cross Country Championships. He won the title again in 2014. Brian Plonka / NCAA Photos Barbara Szabo Brandon Jefferson rockey mountain athletic conference photos 64 2014 Division II Yearbook Top teams from the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, 2013-14. • NCAA team champions – Adams State men’s cross country (2013 and 2014), Adams State women’s indoor track and field (2014), Colorado State-Pueblo football (2014) • NCAA runner-ups – Colorado Mesa baseball (2014), Adams State women’s cross country (2013), Adams State women’s outdoor track and field (2014) • NCAA semifinalists (or top four finishers) – Adams State women’s cross country (fourth, 2014), Metro State men’s basketball (2014), Colorado Mesa men’s soccer (2014). Colorado School of Mines men’s cross country (fourth, 2014) and women’s soccer (2014), Lindenwood women’s lacrosse (2014), Western State men’s cross country (fourth, 2013), Western State women’s cross country (third, 2013; fourth, 2014) • 25 top-10 team finishes. Nine national Player/Athlete of the Year awards, 2013-14. • Baseball – Austin Kaiser, Colorado Mesa • Men’s basketball – Brandon Jefferson, Metro State • Men’s cross country – Tabor Stevens, Adams State (2013 and 2014) • Women’s indoor field – Barbara Szabo, Western State • Women’s outdoor field – Salcia Slack, New Mexico Highlands • Men’s outdoor track – Tabor Stevens, Adams State • Gene Upshaw Award (top Division II lineman) – Darius Allen, Colorado StatePueblo (2013 and 2014) Standout individuals. Adams State’s Tabor Stevens won back-to-back Division II Men’s Cross Country Championships in 2013 and 2014. Barbara Szabo from Western State won her fourth consecutive national indoor high jump title at the 2014 Division II Women’s Indoor Track and Field Championships, becoming just the third woman to win four championships in a single event. Szabo won the title with a mark of 6 feet, 2 inches (1.88 meters), which would have claimed the Division I title the same day. Metro State’s Brandon Jefferson broke the school’s single-season scoring record, totaling 734 points for an average of 21.6 points per game. The Roadrunners finished the season 32-2 and became only the third RMAC squad to go undefeated in conference play. Conferences Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Founded: 1909 Commissioner: Chris Graham Membership n Adams State University nBlack Hills State University n Chadron State College n University of Colorado, Colorado Springs n Colorado Christian University n Colorado Mesa University n Colorado School of Mines n Colorado State University-Pueblo n Fort Lewis College n Metropolitan State University of Denver nNew Mexico Highlands University n Regis University (Colorado) nSouth Dakota School of Mines & Technology n Western New Mexico University n Western State Colorado University distinct South Atlantic Conference Founded: 1930 Commissioner: Pat Britz Membership n Anderson University (South Carolina) nBrevard College nCarson-Newman University n Catawba College n Coker College nLenoir-Rhyne University n Lincoln Memorial University n Mars Hill University nNewberry College n Queens University of Charlotte nTusculum College n Wingate University The South Atlantic Conference is a collection of 12 private institutions, most of which are faith-based. The SAC enjoyed a number of distinctions in 2013-2014: Philanthropy. The conference raised $28,133 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, the fifth-highest total of any Division II conference. Wingate was sixth among Division II member institutions with $7,030 raised for Make-A-Wish. The Bulldogs also hosted a Make-A-Wish recipient at a home football game. Academics. The conference produced both the male and female Conference Commissioner’s Association Scholar-Athlete of the Year in the Southeast Region and had a record number of student-athletes named to the Commissioner’s Honor Roll. Leadership. Lincoln Memorial cross country student-athlete Bradley Maldonado chaired the Division II Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. All-America honors. Lenoir-Rhyne standout Kevin Baxter earned All-America honors after finishing fourth in the 110-meter hurdles at the Division II Men’s Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Highly competitive. Two conference football teams, Lenoir-Rhyne and CarsonNewman, were nationally ranked throughout the 2013 season. Top athletes. Wingate’s Ashlyn Hardie and Jade Montgomery were named Disney Soccer/National Soccer Coaches Association of America National Players of the Week. South Atlantic Conference photos From top: Wingate’s Make-A-Wish success in 2013-14 included hosting a wish recipient named Vicker, who was the No. 1 Bulldog during his visit. Robbie Nallenweg, a football student-athlete from Wingate, and Ashley Sarmiento, a volleyball student-athlete at Tusculum, were honored by the Division II Conference Commissioner’s Association for their achievements in competition and in the classroom. Lenoir-Rhyne’s Kevin Baxter (far right) cleared enough hurdles to finish fourth at the 2014 outdoor track and field championships. Erik Holladay / NCAA Photos Conferences 2014 Division II Yearbook 65 Innovative The Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference attracted approximately 2 million unique visitors to its digital ecosystem, the most of any NCAA Division II conference, while continuing to lead Division II in several social media platforms, including Twitter and Facebook. Right, middle: The Tuskegee men’s basketball team became the first SIAC squad in nearly three decades to advance to the Elite Eight. Below: This foursome made history calling the Lane-Miles football game in 2013. From left to right, they are back judge Krystle Apellaniz, field judge Sebrina Brunson, head linesman Yvonda Lewis and line judge Tangela Mitchell. The SIAC was the first NCAA conference to have four female officials on the crew for a college football game. Head linesman Yvonda Lewis, line judge Tangela Mitchell, field judge Sebrina Brunson and back judge Krystle Apellaniz called the Oct. 24, 2013, contest between Miles and Lane. Harold Mitchell, supervisor of officials for the SIAC, said, “This is a special opportunity for not only the group of ladies selected to officiate the game, but all officials in the SIAC. It’s also very important for everyone to understand that the selected crew are all outstanding officials, and not just females.” Southern intercollegiate athletic conference The SIAC celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2013-14. The league featured nine founding members, two of which remain as active members today – Clark College (now Clark Atlanta University) and Tuskegee University. Tuskegee’s men’s basketball team advanced to the Division II Elite Eight, becoming the first SIAC team to accomplish the feat in nearly three decades. Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Founded: 1913 Commissioner: Greg Moore Membership n Albany State University (Georgia) nBenedict College n Central State University n Claflin University n Clark Atlanta University n Fort Valley State University nKentucky State University n Lane College nLeMoyne-Owen College n Miles College n Morehouse College n Paine College nSpring Hill College (Candidacy Year 2) nStillman College nTuskegee University Southern intercollegiate athletic conference 66 2014 Division II Yearbook Conferences Barry’s Elisabeth Abanda returns a shot from Armstrong’s Clara Perez during their singles match. Barry’s tennis team won its second national title in four years. Matt Marriott / NCAA Photos Distinguished It was a banner year for the Sunshine State Conference, with transition and growth, and continued success in competition, in the classroom, and in the community. Sunshine State Conference Founded: 1975 Commissioner: Ed Pasque Membership nBarry University nEckerd College n Florida Institute of Technology n Florida Southern College n Lynn University nNova Southeastern University n Rollins College nSaint Leo University n University of Tampa Provisional members nEmbry-Riddle Aeronautical University n Palm Beach Atlantic University The Sunshine State Conference continued to distinguish itself through growth, with the addition of men’s lacrosse in 2013-14 and the announcement that women’s lacrosse will be added in spring 2015, bringing the total number of sports for the league to 18. In addition, the conference received official acceptance from Embry-Riddle (Daytona Beach, Florida) and Palm Beach Atlantic (West Palm Beach, Florida) to become provisional members, the first since Nova Southeastern joined as a provisional member in 2002. When both schools complete their provisional terms, the conference will increase to 11 member institutions in 2017-18. The Sunshine State Conference was distinguished academically, earning the highest Academic Success Rate among Division II conferences for the seventh straight year. The conference also named 958 studentathletes to its spring 2014 Commissioner’s Honor Roll. In addition, the Division II Athletics Directors Association recognized 475 Sunshine State student-athletes for academic achievement. Lynn university photo (above, women); Barry University Photo (Men) It was back-to-back on the fairways for Sunshine State teams in 2014, as golf squads from Barry (above; men) and Lynn (above; women) claimed consecutive titles. The Sunshine State also was distinguished in competition, with Lynn and Barry winning national team titles in women’s and men’s golf, respectively; Barry winning in women’s tennis; and Lynn (men’s soccer) and Tampa (women’s volleyball) capturing crowns at the DII Festival this fall. In addition, Tim Crouch (Florida Southern, men’s golf), Louise Manalo (Lynn, women’s golf) and Alli Crenshaw (Florida Southern, women’s swimming) won individual national titles in 2013-14. The SSC featured eight former student-athletes on active Major League Baseball rosters in 2014 and had nine players selected in the 2014 MLB Draft. Conferences 2014 Division II Yearbook 67 KING LOO AHE AD Some old, some new in store for Division II By Brian Hendrickson Blacktop Creative, which Division II retained to develop a new externally facing brand, recently performed a branding makeover for Kansas City’s Major League Soccer franchise, which went from being the Wizards to Sporting KC. An effort to build on Division II’s brand attributes with a new look and feel for 2015 and beyond will come with familiar messages: stories of how student-athletes crave personal connections, opportunities to play and real-world skills. Division II – between its Life in the Balance positioning statement and its strategic platform, built on core values of service, sportsmanship and learning, among others – has rallied around those messages for the past decade. The division’s members, with years of familiarity, intuitively understand how they distinguish their division from its NCAA cousins. Knowing that it was time to build on the past to strengthen its future from a branding perspective, Division II retained a Kansas City, Missouri-based marketing firm called Blacktop Creative, which has worked with national brands such as Applebee’s, Chick-fil-A and Sporting KC (a Major League Soccer franchise in Kansas City, Kansas). Blacktop spent the past year conducting interviews with people familiar with the division to learn what individualized it from the other divisions. The need for initial independent research illustrated what Division II leaders already knew: More investment needs to be made in communicating the Division II brand beyond the membership. “With the whole journey to distinguish what Division II is in our own minds, we have done a phenomenal job,” Management Council chair Karen Stromme said. “Now we need to articulate it a lot better than we’re doing to the external audience.” The key to success, according to Blacktop executives, is finding the core truth about Division II – the DNA that influences every interaction people have with it, from messaging to program satisfaction. The branding elements that emerge from that core truth then become what Blacktop refers to as a “brand experience,” or the feelings people take away from interacting with Division II. That experience can then be marketed in ways that allow the core beliefs of Division II to attract external audiences. Blacktop gathered additional data through online surveys, interviews and focus groups this past spring and Blacktop creative images summer. Once complete, the information will be used collaboratively with Division II members to determine the division’s core truth and the brand positioning that will ultimately drive the rest of the campaign. The goal is to rally members around a single, uniting point and use it to define the Division II experience in a way that engages, is interactive and can turn outside audiences into advocates. Blacktop presented ideas for a brand moniker, brand colors, photography and other aspects of design that would help tell the story of Division II to the governance structure this fall. The new moniker would replace the current “I Chose Division II” tagline. Those ideas will be vetted during the 2015 Convention, and Division II members will have many opportunities to weigh in on the concepts before a brand strategy is chosen this spring. REBRANDING TIMELINE 70 2014 Division II Yearbook January 12-17 Blacktop attends/presents at NCAA Convention Post-Convention Continue testing and implement broad membership feedback Spring 2015 Soft brand launch Summer 2015 Full brand launch ready for 2015-16 academic year LOOKING AHEAD Welcome to NCAA Division II – where excellence is always the pursuit but not a narrow one. It’s a collegiate environment that encourages individuals to discover and pursue what they love. Division II is the country’s premier stage for what matters most: the hearts, minds and ambition of young people. 9 Winning isn’t just about spo rts. It isn’t just about academi cs. It’s about achieving everyt hing you need to be ready for the ultimate level of competition: LIFE. life 12 LOOKING AHEAD 2014 Division II Yearbook 71 New communication tools available To accompany Division II’s branding efforts in the coming months, the national office has developed communications tools to help Division II members promote the division to external audiences. The brand audit conducted two years ago found that while Division II members were proficient at understanding and promoting the division’s values and attributes to internal audiences, they were not as well equipped to carry the Division II message to constituents who aren’t familiar with Division II. As such, prototype talking-point brochures are now available at NCAA.org for these purposes. The brochures, which can be downloaded as PDFs and printed, offer quick-hit messaging for Division II members to promote the division’s unique attributes, characteristics and programs. Two prototypes have been created, one for athletics department staff and another for faculty athletics representatives. Other versions are being planned specifically for presidents, coaches and student-athletes. The brochures address requests from Division II members who have asked for material that helps explain the division during recruiting visits and presentations to community groups, alumni groups and potential donors. In addition to these brochures, the national office partnered with the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference to create a handbook to help Division II conferences stage community engagement events during their postseason tournaments. The publication, “Your time to shine: A resource guide to staging conference championship events with community en- The three toolkits are now available for download at NCAA.org: •B enefits of Division II membership: Talking points for athletics directors and staff •B enefits of Division II membership: Talking points for faculty athletics representatives •Y our time to shine: A resource guide to staging conference championship events with community engagement in mind 72 2014 Division II Yearbook gagement in mind,” is also available at NCAA.org and is intended as a template for conferences to strengthen their community relationships during their flagship events. The booklet guides conference personnel from the planning stage, through relationship building, pre-event preparations and the games themselves. While the guide is designed as a tool for conference community engagement, the resources also are relevant for community engagement at the institutional level. Other communications tools are being developed in 2015 to join with these pieces and help Division II members continue to tout the benefits of membership in Division II.
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