What's new in 2019
As with every season, there are various changes occurring for the new 2019 season, and we highlight some of the noteworthy ones. We look at who’s leaving Division III and who’s joining, updates in schools' membership status, conference affiliation changes, tweaks to the tournament field and berth allocations, etc. The bigger story this off-season is not the number of schools switching conferences, but the loss of Division III members. Between closures, departure from the NCAA, and reclassification within the NCAA, Division III sees a net loss of five members—the first time in recent memory and maybe the first time ever that the division has shrunk instead of grown. We also look ahead, describing policy changes that are in the works and listing upcoming conference affiliation changes.
GETTING IN ON THE FUN – NEW AND RESURRECTED SOCCER PROGRAMS DEBUT IN 2019
• After a year as club teams, the Mary Baldwin University men’s and women’s soccer programs begin intercollegiate play this fall. Actually, Mary Baldwin had a women’s team through the 2016 fall season before discontinuing the program due to waning interest. The university added its first co-educational undergraduate programs for the 2017/18 school year, breaking an all-women’s tradition dating back to its founding as a seminary in 1842. Soccer, cross-country and track & field were the first men’s programs established, playing as club teams in 2018/19. The Fighting Squirrels compete in the USA South Athletic Conference, and these three men’s teams start conference play this year along with the return of the women’s soccer team. With Mary Baldwin a full, active Division III member, these teams are immediately eligible for the conference and NCAA championships.
• Chatham University has added a men’s soccer team that begins varsity intercollegiate competition this fall. Chatham, a 12-year member of the Presidents’ Athletic Conference (PAC), has been a Division III member since 1994,...[read more]