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Tuesday, December 17, 2019

The Conference Shuffle

D3Playbook
DECEMBER 17, 2019 | written by STEVE ULRICH
your must-read briefing on what's driving the day in NCAA Division III

Our goal is to keep you - the influencers in DIII athletics - apprised of what's happening around Division III - the games, polls, news, happenings, awards, calendar of events, and much more. We hope you enjoy d3Playbook and that you'll share this with your friends, colleagues and co-workers.

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>> Today's Word Count: 1,106 (just under 5 minutes). Brief, concise, smart.

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1.  The Conference Shuffle

The Division III conference landscape shifted once again as two more members of the Capital Athletic Conference - Southern Virginia and St. Mary's (Md.) - made the leap to new leagues.

That leaves Christopher Newport, Mary Washington and Salisbury as the remaining members of the Capital. UMW is the only remaining original member of the group.

Capital Athletic Conference (founded 1989)
  • founding members: Catholic (joined Landmark 2007), Gallaudet (joined NEAC 2010), Mary Washington, Marymount (joined AEC 2018), St. Mary's (joined NEAC 2021), York (joined MAC 2020).
  • 1991: added Goucher (joined Landmark 2007)
  • 1993: added Salisbury
  • 2005: added Hood (joined MAC 2012), Stevenson (joined MAC 2012)
  • 2006: added Wesley (joined AEC 2018)
  • 2010: added Frostburg State (moved to DII 2019)
  • 2013: added Christopher Newport, Southern Virginia (joined USA South 2021)
  • 2014: added Penn State Harrisburg (joined NEAC 2019)

A look back at recent moves involving full-time membership among conferences.

> Commonwealth Coast Conference
Suffolk (leave GNAC, effective 2020-21)

> Middle Atlantic Conference
York (leave CAC, effective 2020-21)

> North Atlantic Conference
Cazenovia, SUNY Cobleskill, SUNY Poly (leave NEAC, effective July 2020)

> Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference
St. Norbert (leave Midwest, effective 2020-21)

> Presidents Athletic Conference
Franciscan (leave AMCC, effective 2020-21)


Change in Full-Time Membership Since 2009 (31 conferences)
Allegheny Mountain, American Rivers, American Southwest, Capital, CCIW, Colonial States, Commonwealth Coast, CUNYAC, Empire 8, Great Northeast, Heartland, Landmark, Liberty, Little East, Middle Atlantic, Midwest, Minnesota, NEAC, NECC, NEWMAC, North Atlantic, North Coast, Northern Athletics, Old Dominion, Presidents, SCAC, SCIAC, Skyline, SLIAC, Upper Midwest, USA South.

Constant Full-Time Membership since 2009 (10)
Centennial, Massachusetts, Michigan, NESCAC, New Jersey, Northwest, Ohio, SUNYAC, UAA, Wisconsin.

New Conferences since 2009 (3)
Atlantic East, American Collegiate (ACAA), Southern Athletic Assn. (SAA).


>> Be Smart: Four of the 10 constant conferences are primarily comprised of public institutions - MASCAC, NJAC, SUNYAC, WIAC.

>> The Final Word: If there is one thing that we can count on in Division III, it's that a majority of its members are constantly looking over their shoulder for a better offer. Be prepared for a busy 2020.

2.  Knight Commission Speaks (Again)

Leading up to today's appearance by Mark Emmert at the Aspen Institute, the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics informed Emmert and the NCAA that it will "examine new models to restructure college sports, citing the challenges created by the “highly commercialized environment” for Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) football and some NCAA Division I sports, particularly men’s basketball."

In an appearance last week at a Sports Business Journal conference in New York, co-chair Arne Duncan offered some restructuring ideas that might be explored. For example, big-revenue athletics programs might be placed in a new division or organized and managed outside of the NCAA.

“Just let them play by a different set of rules – and be upfront about it and be honest about it,” said Duncan, the former U.S. Secretary of Education.

The existing structure of the NCAA “works extraordinarily well for 95, 96, 97 percent of students and schools,” Duncan said, but he warned that in Division I revenue sports, the relentless quest for more dollars has driven things “absolutely out of whack, and the best interests of students has been lost.”
>> Reality Check: Here is a link to the recent history of Knight Commission statements.

>> Keep Reading

3.  Best of the Decade

We continue our "Best of the Decade" series with a look at the champions, runners-up and final four finishers in lacrosse.

Champions: Gettysburg (3), Salisbury (3), Middlebury (2), Cortland, Trinity.

Runner-Up: Trinity (4), Salisbury (2), Bowdoin, Hamilton, Middlebury, College of New Jersey.

Final Four Appearances: Cortland (6), Middlebury (6), Salisbury (6), Trinity (6), Gettysburg (4), Franklin & Marshall (3), TCNJ (3), Amherst, Bowdoin, Hamilton, Tufts, Washington and Lee, Wesleyan.



Champions: Salisbury (4), Tufts (3), Cabrini, Stevenson, Wesleyan.

Runner-Up: Salisbury (3), RIT (2), Tufts (2), Amherst, Cortland, Lynchburg.

Final Four Appearances: Salisbury (9), RIT (6), Tufts (6), Cortland (3), Gettysburg (3), Stevenson (3), Wesleyan (2), Amherst, Cabrini, Denison, Lynchburg, Roanoke, St. Lawrence, Washington College, Williams.

Tomorrow: Baseball


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    4. Polls  

    Basketball (W) D3hoops.com
    1. Tufts (8-0)
    2. Scranton (7-0)
    3. Bowdoin (9-0)
    4. Hope (10-0)
    5. Mary Hardin-Baylor (7-1)
    6. Amherst (4-1)
    7. Wartburg (8-1)
    8. DePauw (9-1)
    9. George Fox (6-1)
    10. DeSales (6-1)
    11-15: UW-La Crosse, Messiah, Whitman, Baldwin Wallace, Transylvania.
    16-20: Augsburg, St. Thomas, Marymount, UW-Whitewater, Chicago.
    21-25: Gustavus Adolphus, Trinity TX, Loras, Widener, Bethel.

    >> Hello: Widener, Bethel.
    >> Bye-Bye: UW-Platteville, Illinois Wesleyan.


    Basketball (M) - D3hoops.com
    1. Swarthmore (9-0)
    2. Emory (9-0)
    3. Wittenberg (7-0)
    4. Middlebury (9-0)
    5. St. Thomas MN (8-1)
    6. Marietta (6-0)
    7. Randolph-Macon (9-0)
    8. Nebraska Wesleyan (10-1)
    9. UW-Platteville (9-0)
    10. Washington U. (8-1)
    11-15: Saint John's, Babson, Johns Hopkins, Whitworth, UW-La Crosse.
    16-20: Elmhurst, Colby, Carthage, Benedictine, Amherst.
    21-25: Guilford, Hamilton, Illinois Wesleyan, Wooster, North Central IL.

    >> Greetings: Hamilton, Illinois Wesleyan, Wooster, North Central IL.
    >> Adios: Nichols, UW-Stevens Point, Springfield, Augustana.

    >> Looking Ahead: #10 Washington U. at #23 Illinois Wesleyan (12/19)


    5.  Comings and Goings 



    6.  1 Poll Thing


    In a recent Gallup Poll, about half of U.S. adults (51%) now consider a college education to be "very important," down from 70% in 2013. Over the same period, the percentages rating college as "fairly important" and "not too important" have both increased, to 36% and 13%, respectively.

    Perceptions that a college education is very important have declined in the U.S. among all age groups since 2013, but the drop has been especially pronounced -- 33 percentage points -- among adults aged 18 to 29. As a result, younger adults are now less likely than middle-aged adults and seniors to consider college as very important, whereas the different age groups held similar perceptions in 2013.

    >> The Key Stat: Extensive research still indicates a college degree leads to a higher-paying job, increased job security and healthier behaviors. Unfortunately, if a college education continues to feel out of reach for many and its value or political neutrality/integrity is questioned, fewer may take advantage of this unique and transformative experience.

    >> Go Deeper
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