Shorter University assessing possible move to NCAA Division II
January 19, 2011 - Shorter University Athletic Director Bill Peterson and President Dr. Harold E. Newman today jointly announce that the university is conducting a feasibility study regarding a possible move to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II.
"Last year, Shorter’s Athletic Director Bill Peterson was approached by representatives of the NCAA’s Division II Gulf South Conference,” Newman said. “A block of schools from Arkansas have formed a new conference, which left the Gulf South in need of additional football schools. The representatives from the Gulf South knew of Shorter’s reputation for excellence and asked us to consider joining with them.”
“We believe that Shorter is considered a prime candidate for expansion by the Gulf South,” Peterson added. “Having the backing of an established conference if we choose to make application to the NCAA would be a bonus. While such a move would not guarantee admission to the NCAA, it is certainly something that we need to consider seriously.”
As a result, Peterson said, Shorter has contracted with Collegiate Consulting of Atlanta to conduct a study to analyze how such a move would impact the university. “The possibility of changing our national affiliation requires a complex analysis of many factors. It is not a decision that we will make lightly,” Peterson said. The feasibility study should be completed in the next few weeks with a decision expected to be made later this semester.
Shorter is currently a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), with which it has been affiliated since the 1950s. Today, Shorter athletics consists of 21 highly competitive sports teams for both men and women. The Shorter athletics program seeks to challenge student-athletes spiritually, academically and athletically so that they may be successful in their future endeavors. With a program based on faith, integrity, excellence, and scholarship, Shorter athletics is dedicated and committed to providing our student-athletes with the best college experience in the nation.
Shorter has served as host of the NAIA’s football national championship event since 2008. Peterson said that the university is committed to continuing that relationship regardless of the affiliation of its athletic programs. “We have informed Jim Carr, the president of the NAIA, and Dennis Green, manager of championship sports, that we are working on the feasibility study. The NAIA has given Rome a contract to host the football national championship through 2015, and we expect that agreement to continue.”
Founded in 1873, Shorter University is a Christian university committed to excellence in education. Since 2003, U.S. News & World Report has ranked Shorter among the South’s best baccalaureate colleges, and The Princeton Review annually includes Shorter on its lists of best value and best Southeastern colleges. The university offers traditional bachelor’s degree programs in 48 major areas as well as undergraduate degree programs for working adults, master’s programs, and online courses and degrees. For more information, visit www.shorter.edu.