Chapman University Welcomed as the Ninth Member of the SCIAC

Chapman University Welcomed as the Ninth Member of the SCIAC

Los Angeles, Calif. – It was announced today that Chapman University has been accepted as the ninth member of the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC), beginning with the 2011-12 academic year.  The addition of Chapman marks the first expansion of the conference since California Lutheran University joined in 1991.

“The SCIAC is thrilled to welcome Chapman University into the conference,” stated Lorin Huffman, SCIAC Executive Director.  “The outstanding academic, athletic, and leadership qualities at Chapman provide an excellent fit with the current membership and the league’s long tradition of excellence in academics and athletics.”

The SCIAC Presidents Council unanimously approved the membership invitation that was formally extended on May 6.  Dr. James L. Doti, President of Chapman University, accepted the invitation on behalf of the institution.  “We accept with a great deal of pride this invitation to join SCIAC – we believe that Chapman can be highly competitive in the conference, and we greatly look forward to membership in this exemplary athletic association.”

Throughout the application process, which was initiated in the fall, the governing bodies of the SCIAC solicited feedback from all constituent groups including presidents, athletic administrators, faculty, coaches, and student-athletes.    

“The acceptance of Chapman is a major milestone for the SCIAC,” said Huffman.  “This decision will enhance the league and its member institutions, and we look forward to a long and successful relationship promoting Division III athletics in Southern California.”

David Currey, Chapman’s director of athletics, who oversaw the program's transition to the Division III level in 1994, was delighted to receive the invitation.  “This is a historic day in the life of our intercollegiate athletics program at Chapman.” 

Membership will take effect on July 1, 2011, and in its first year, Chapman will be ineligible to qualify for league championships.  During the transition period, the Panthers will be eligible to qualify for at-large bids into NCAA Championships.

The SCIAC currently conducts championship competition in twenty sports (10 women and 10 men) and will increase sport sponsorship to twenty-one with the addition of Women’s Golf next year.  Chapman offers varsity programs in seventeen of those sports (8 men and 9 women) and over the course of the next five years will be expected to add varsity intercollegiate programs in men’s track and field, men’s swimming and diving, women’s lacrosse, and women’s golf.

The Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference was established in 1915. The league is currently comprised of eight private colleges and universities in Southern California including California Institute of Technology, California Lutheran University, Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges, University of La Verne, Occidental College, Pomona-Pitzer Colleges, University of Redlands, and Whittier College. 

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