Presentation on theme: "Beyond the Playing Field: The Significance of NCAA/NAIA Divisional Status and Athletic Conference Affiliation Kyle Sweitzer Michigan State University ASHE."— Presentation transcript:
Beyond the Playing Field: The Significance of NCAA/NAIA Divisional Status and Athletic Conference Affiliation Kyle Sweitzer Michigan State University ASHE Symposium Louisville, KYNovember 8, 2007
2 Campus Size, Carnegie Classification, & Athletic Division Whether a school competes in NCAA Division I, II, III or in the NAIA does not depend on size or Carnegie classification NCAA divisional status depends on the commitment and emphasis a school wants to place on athletics
3 Campus Size, Carnegie Classification, & Athletic Division Nevertheless, there is a strong relationship between research university status and NCAA Division-I status 262 research or doctoral/research univs in the Carnegie classification scheme 77% of them have athletic programs that compete in NCAA Division-I
4 Campus Size, Carnegie Classification, & Athletic Division Of the 119 schools that compete in NCAA Division I-A, 107 are either a research univ or a doctoral/research univ 10 of the other 12 are classified as a large size master’s university The other two Division I-A schools are the US Military Academy and the US Naval Academy
5 Campus Size, Carnegie Classification, & Athletic Division The majority of schools in NCAA Division-II are classified by Carnegie as either master’s univs or baccalaureate colleges The majority of schools in NCAA Division-III and the NAIA are small colleges—including many classified by Carnegie as “baccalaureate colleges—arts & sciences” (liberal arts colleges) or “baccalaureate colleges—diverse fields”
6 Campus Size, Carnegie Classification, & Athletic Division Indeed, the bulk of institutions classified by Carnegie as “Baccalaureate Colleges—Arts & Sciences” (liberal arts colleges) either compete in NCAA Division-III or the NAIA Only 17 liberal arts colleges compete in NCAA Division-I Of these 17, only 2 compete in Division I-A (Army & Navy)
7 Moving Up in NCAA Division Many schools in recent years have moved upward in division status –NAIA into NCAA Division III –Division III to Division II –Division II to Division I Many schools will move upward in athletic status to augment a concurrent move “upward” in Carnegie status “Mission Creep” extends to athletics
8 Athletic Conference Affiliation There may be a variety of reasons why an institution belongs to an athletic conference beyond athletic competition Academic elites HBCU status Public institutions in the same state system State flagship status Geographic proximity Any of these reasons for conference membership are also reasons why conference affiliation has meaning beyond the playing field
9 Athletic Conference Affiliation Examples of academically elite conferences: Ivy League All 8 Ivies are in Top 14 of U.S. News rankings University Athletic Association Research univs competing in Division III All members of AAU (1 of only 2 conferences) New England Small College Athletic Conference Liberal Arts colleges (all in Top 34 of U.S. News) Patriot League 2 Res Univs and 6 Lib Arts Colleges in Division I Centennial Conference
10 Historically Black Conferences Four conferences (2 in NCAA Division-I and 2 in NCAA Division-II) which consist strictly of historically black colleges & universities (HBCUs) These schools play a full slate within the conference. These conferences consist of schools of various Carnegie types, indicating they would rather associate with other HBCUs over schools with similar Carnegie classification
11 Geographic Proximity Geographic proximity is an important factor in affiliation with an athletic conference for two primary reasons – the expense of travel and missed class time. Maintaining regional rivalries is also important to many institutions.
12 Geographic Proximity The “scope” of geographic proximity…. What is considered “close” geographically can vary depending on NCAA division Division-I conferences can span several states—especially those that include primarily state flagships (the BCS conferences)
13 Geographic Proximity State pride in the flagship is a reason why flagships compete against one another in a conference….many border rivals Note: Almost every flagship and secondary flagship competes at the Division-I level Every state except Alaska has at least one Division-I school.
14 Geographic Proximity Some conferences consist of schools which are all part of the same state system Pennsylvania State Athletic Conf – the 14 schools that are part of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education California Collegiate Athletic Assoc – all publics in California State system + one from UC system Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conf – all in the Univ of Wisconsin system New Jersey Athletic Conf – public institutions within New Jersey
15 Switching Conferences Penn State and the Big 10 Committee on Institutional Cooperation Association of Big 10 Students New group of peer institutions Bolstered PSU’s academic prestige Big East Conference Several of the presidents mentioned boosting the academic reputation by joining these conferences Switching Conferences in Divisions II and III Gannon University and Mercyhurst College Juniata College and the Landmark Conference
16 Summary Schools in a given NCAA division or in the NAIA are similar in the degree of emphasis they place on athletics. Many institutions want to associate athletically with schools that are similar in either mission, size, control, or reputation.