The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) has officially notified Spring Hill College that its application for membership in NCAA Division II has been accepted. Spring Hill College athletic director, Jim Hall, received the notification via email Friday, July 12.
In October 2012, Spring Hill College accepted an invitation to join the 13-member Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC). The Badgers will now begin the process of making the transition from the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) to the NCAA and to full membership in the SIAC.
By becoming a member of the NCAA, Spring Hill College will now join the 26 Jesuit colleges and universities nationwide that are already members of the NCAA.
"This is a historic day for Badger Athletics and for Spring Hill College," said Athletic Director Jim Hall. "We've worked diligently over the last two years to make this next phase in the upward evolution of Badger Athletics a reality. There is still considerable work to be done, but we are thrilled to be joining the SIAC and NCAA Division II."
Achieving full NCAA Division II membership typically takes three years. Provided the athletic department successfully completes each phase of the membership process, Spring Hill will spend two years in candidacy status and then one year as a provisional member of NCAA Division II before gaining full membership status.
SHC will remain a member of the NAIA and the Southern States Athletic Conference (SSAC) for the 2013-14 seasons and will have access to SSAC and NAIA post-season championships. During the 2014-15 and 2015-16 academic years, Spring Hill will play a full slate of NCAA Division II and SIAC regular season competition. The Badgers would not be eligible for NCAA or SIAC post-season competition until the 2016-17 seasons after full NCAA Division II membership has been attained.
Spring Hill College participates in 16 varsity athletic programs that will make the transition to the NCAA Division II level.