RSU Achieves NCAA Division II Provisional Status

Rogers State University received notification Thursday from the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) that it has been granted provisional membership, successfully completing the second year of the three-year Division II membership process.

“I am grateful that we have achieved another milestone in RSU’s move towards NCAA Division II membership, which is a long-term strategic decision that advances the university, better serves the needs of our student-athletes and provides increased exposure for the communities we serve,” said RSU President Dr. Larry Rice. “The NCAA Division II model is in harmony with RSU’s mission of providing growth opportunities for students through academic achievement and service to community. When combined with athletic endeavors, this provides an environment where RSU student-¬≠athletes graduate as well-rounded individuals with drive, dedication and devotion to improving their communities. The RSU family is grateful to Director of Athletics Ryan Erwin, our coaches and staff for successfully leading RSU through the membership process and establishing high expectations for our student-¬≠athletes both in the classroom and on the field.”

Full, active membership in NCAA Division II is a three-year process, and RSU remains ineligible for NCAA postseason play until it completes the progression, but the university will continue to play full NCAA and Heartland Conference schedules in 2015-16. The Hillcats completed their second year as members of the NCAA Division II Heartland Conference during the 2014-15 season.

“We have been anxiously awaiting the news from the Membership Committee and look forward to moving into our final year of the transition and the provisional year before becoming an active member of NCAA Division II next July,” said Erwin. “The University continues to make progress to full membership and we are thankful for the athletic department staff, coaches, and student-athletes, as well as the many other departments on campus that have helped with this process. It has been exciting to be part of the transition and see our programs evolve in pursuit of full, active membership beginning with the 2016-17 academic year.”

As a provisional member, RSU is required to follow all NCAA Division II legislation, including violations reporting and filing for waivers. In the third and final year of the membership process, RSU will take part in an audit of the University’s compliance procedures, and in June an annual report will be submitted for the NCAA’s consideration of granting full membership in July 2016.

The committee’s decisions will be reviewed by the NCAA Division II Management Council as part of its regular process during its July 27-28 meeting, and if no further action is taken at that time, the membership changes will take effect Sept. 1.