From the Huntingdon College Office of Communications
MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Huntingdon College President J. Cameron West announced today that Huntingdon will join the NCAA-Division III USA South Athletic Conference beginning in the fall of 2013. Huntingdon and Covenant College (Ga.) were approved as members at a meeting of the USA South presidents yesterday. Current USA South members are Averett University (Va.), Ferrum College (Va.), Greensboro College (N.C.), Mary Baldwin College (Va.), Meredith College (N.C.), Methodist University (N.C.), N.C. Wesleyan College (N.C.), William Peace University (N.C.), and the conference's newest members, LaGrange College (Ga.), Piedmont College (Ga.), and Maryville College (Tenn.).
"We have now achieved the institutional goal of becoming part of an NCAA-Division III conference that will enable our athletic teams to participate in conference championship competition leading to qualification for NCAA post-season play," said West. "We have aligned ourselves with a group of institutions who share our values and with whom we already have competitive relationships in many sports. The recent expansion of the USA South into Georgia and Tennessee, and now its expansion into Alabama, strengthens an already strong conference and gives it a broad Division III Southeastern identity," West continued.
"This is a great day for Huntingdon College," said head football coach Mike Turk, speaking on behalf of the athletic department in the absence of athletic director Buzz Phillips, who has accompanied the women's softball team to NCAA post-season competition in Texas. "And when I say that, I really mean for Huntingdon College, as well as for the football program. We are thrilled to join the USA South. Huntingdon student-athletes have played for many years with limited opportunities in most sports for NCAA post-season competition. Membership in this conference will increase Huntingdon's visibility with prospective student-athletes and will offer new possibilities for our entire athletic program."
"We are excited to welcome Huntingdon College to the USA South," said USA South Athletic Conference Commissioner Rita Wiggs in a prepared statement from the Conference. "Their strong academic profile and commitment to the Division III philosophy for their athletic program makes them a perfect fit for our Conference. Their programs will strengthen and enhance the competition of our league. We look forward to the future with Huntingdon College as a full partner in athletic competition and the development of well-rounded student-athletes."
USA South President's Council chair Jim Gray, president of North Carolina Wesleyan College, said, "We are delighted to have Huntingdon College join the USA South. They share our values for academics and good sportsmanship in addition to their athletic competitiveness. As a whole, Huntingdon is comparative with the standards and the level of play we currently have in the USA South. We feel like the addition makes the Conference strong and growing and that's the place we want to be."
Huntingdon fields teams in men's baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, lacrosse, soccer, tennis, and track & field; and in women's basketball, cross country, golf, lacrosse, soccer, softball, tennis, track & field, and volleyball. The College has competed in the NCAA-Division III Great South Athletic Conference since 2002. The USA South Athletic Conference will accommodate conference championship competition for most of Huntingdon's intercollegiate athletic teams, including football. Track & field, men's lacrosse, and women's golf will remain as independents at this time.
Huntingdon College has a 158-year commitment to nurturing growth in faith, wisdom, and service and to graduating individuals prepared to succeed in a rapidly changing world. The words, "Faith, Wisdom, Service," appear on the College logo, encapsulating the College's motto, "Enter to grow in wisdom; go forth to apply wisdom in service," which is engraved in stone above the door of Huntingdon's historic Flowers Hall.
For more information, contact the Huntingdon College Office of Communications at (344) 833-4515.