SNU to Apply for Membership in NCAA DII

BETHANY, Okla. (November 22, 2010) - After more than a year of considering options for the future of Southern Nazarene University athletics, the administration has decided to make application for membership in the National Collegiate Athletic Association, Division II. The process of arriving at this point has been slow, deliberative, and with considerable discussion among campus, governing board, and alumni constituents.

The SNU Administration has debated the future direction of our athletics programs with conflicted feelings due to SNU’s longtime membership in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics, and in the Sooner Athletic Conference. The NAIA, its leadership, philosophy, and culture have been a great place for over 40 years. As charter members of the Texoma Conference, out of which the Sooner Athletic Conference developed, SNU has enjoyed friendly rivalries and warm relationships with their respective personnel and institutions. Difficulties over the last decade in finding a suitable affiliation which would accommodate the growing football program has been one of the factors leading to SNU’s consideration of other options.

SNU is currently being assisted in the planning by experienced consultants who are former NCAA, DII athletics directors. The Strategic Plan and Feasibility Study required for application are underway, and it is SNU’s intention to submit all documents with the formal application by June 1, 2011. And while somewhat conflicted at the possibility of leaving friends and associates in the NAIA and in the Sooner Athletic Conference, SNU is excited about this new direction should the application be accepted next summer.

Southern Nazarene University's mission is to transform lives through higher education in Christ-centered community. As a Christian community of scholars, we model the hospitality of grace, the pursuit of truth and the practice of discipleship, all within the Wesleyan-holiness tradition, as we prepare graduates who THINK with clarity, ACT with integrity and SERVE with purpose.