Southern Nazarene Approved for Provisional Year

BETHANY, Okla. — The goal to become full-fledged members in NCAA Division II is still on track for Southern Nazarene University as it received word that it has advanced to the Provisional Stage of the NCAA Division II Membership Process. 

"We appreciate the privilege afforded by the NCAA Division II Membership Committee of moving into the Provisional Year of the process," said SNU President Loren Gresham. "Our good partners in the Great American Conference have been helpful and supportive through this process as well. We move forward with gratitude to a great team of athletic administrators, coaches and staff support colleagues. We are grateful." 

SNU just completed Candidacy Year Two of the process and the institution's first year of playing in the Great American Conference. The provisional stage is the final stage before becoming full outright members of Division II. If SNU is able to successfully complete the stage during the 2013-14 academic year, it will be eligible for NCAA postseason play in the 2014-15 season. 

"We are excited to be one step closer in completing this process," said SNU Director of Athletics Bobby Martin. "We couldn't be happier with the job our coaches and administration have done over the past two years to put new processes in place and adapt to the changes. We look forward to another year full of challenges and feel confident in the job we are doing and people we have in place as we make this transition."

Over the course of two years, the athletics department at Southern Nazarene University has made significant changes in compliance, athletic oversight and gender equity initiatives. Examples of those changes are the hiring of Assistant Athletics Director for Compliance and Senior Woman Administrator Tammy Ikerd and instituting the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) headed by Associate Director of Athletics Paul McGrady. 

In the 2012-13 season, the Crimson Storm earned their first Great American Conference title as its women's tennis team finished in a three-tie at the top going 5-1 in GAC play. Amy Madden also earned SNU's first Capitol One Academic All-America of the Year for Division II Softball and was named the GAC Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Women's basketball also won the NCCAA National Championship as seven of the eight teams in that tournament were either in transition or had made the transition to Division II, including runner-up California Baptist who had won the PacWest. 

The 2013 football season will be Southern Nazarene's first full conference schedule as last year was the second year of a two-year rotation. The Storm will have 10 conference games with a non-conference game against McMurry. 

"The initiatives we started and the early success we have had this past year have been encouraging," said Martin. "We are very grateful to join with the Great American Conference and are excited about the relationships we are building. The GAC members have been our biggest supporters. We thank them and those in the conference office for all they have done to help in the transition." 

Press release and photo provided by SNU Athletics

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.