The Summit League
The Summit League is a NCAA conference that plays in NCAA Division I. The member universities and colleges are in the Midwestern United States, plus one member in Colorado. Their headquarters are in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, having moved from the Chicago suburb of Elmhurst, Illinois in 2018.
History[change | change source]
The Summit League was founded in 1982 as the Association of Mid-Continent Universities (AMCU or AMCU-8) with eight members. The only one of these schools that is still a member is Western Illinois. In 1989, the AMCU changed its name to the Mid-Continent Conference, or MCC (those initials, however, were also being used by the Midwestern Collegiate Conference, now the Horizon League).
The Mid-Continent saw many changes in the first part of the 1990s, with the biggest coming in 1992 and 1994. In 1992, the conference added women's sports after it absorbed the North Star Conference, a league that only sponsored women's sports. Then in 1994, six schools (including three charter members) left for the Midwestern Collegiate Conference. They were replaced by six other schools, five of them coming from the collapsed East Coast Conference. None of the schools that joined in 1994 are now in the league.
Since the 1994 changes, the conference has had anywhere from 8 to 10 members. It changed its name to The Summit League in 2007.
Members[change | change source]
The Summit League now has 10 full members. The most recent change in membership took place in 2021, when the University of St. Thomas, located in the Minneapolis–Saint Paul area, joined the conference to start an unprecedented move from NCAA Division III directly to Division I.
|University of Denver||Denver, Colorado||1864||Private||Pioneers||2013|
|University of Missouri–Kansas City (Kansas City)||Kansas City, Missouri||1933||Public||Roos[a]||1994, 2020[b]|
|University of North Dakota||Grand Forks, North Dakota||1890||Public||Fighting Hawks||2018|
|North Dakota State University||Fargo, North Dakota||1890||Public||Bison||2007|
|University of Nebraska Omaha (Omaha)||Omaha, Nebraska||1908||Public||Mavericks||2012|
|Oral Roberts University||Tulsa, Oklahoma||1963||Private||Golden Eagles||1997, 2014[c]|
|University of St. Thomas||Saint Paul, Minnesota||1885||Private||Tommies||2021|
|University of South Dakota||Vermillion, South Dakota||1862||Public||Coyotes||2011|
|South Dakota State University||Brookings, South Dakota||1881||Public||Jackrabbits||2007|
|Western Illinois University||Macomb, Illinois||1899||Public||Leathernecks||1982|
- The university changed its athletic identity from UMKC Kangaroos to Kansas City Roos in 2019. The university name has not changed, and the school still markets itself as UMKC outside of sports.
- Kansas City (UMKC) left in 2013 for the Western Athletic Conference and returned in 2020.
- Oral Roberts left in 2012 for the Southland Conference and returned in 2014.
Associate members[change | change source]
The Summit League has five "associate" members—schools that play in a few sports, usually but not always one. One plays three sports in the conference and three more house one sport in the conference. (Note that the NCAA counts men's and women's teams in the same sport as playing two different sports, and also considers swimming and diving to be a single sport.)
|Drake University||Des Moines, Iowa||1881||Private||Bulldogs||Men's tennis||2017||Missouri Valley|
|Eastern Illinois University||Charleston, Illinois||1895||Public||Panthers||Men's soccer
Men's swimming and diving
Women's swimming and diving
|Illinois State University||Normal, Illinois||1857||Public||Redbirds||Men's tennis||2017||Missouri Valley|
|University of Northern Colorado||Greeley, Colorado||1889||Public||Bears||Baseball||2021||Big Sky|
|Valparaiso University||Valparaiso, Indiana||1859||Private||Beacons||Men's swimming[a]||2017||Missouri Valley|
- Valparaiso does not field a diving team.
Former members[change | change source]
No fewer than 22 schools have been full members, but are no longer in the league.
References[change | change source]
- "The Summit League". summitleague.org. Retrieved 2014-07-28.
- Kansas City Athletics (July 1, 2019). "UMKC Athletics Completes New Brand Identity". Press release. http://www.umkckangaroos.com/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=18300&ATCLID=211806301. Retrieved July 1, 2019.
- The Summit League (June 20, 2019). "Summit League welcomes back UMKC". Press release. Archived from the original on June 23, 2019. https://web.archive.org/web/20190623135234/http://thesummitleague.org/general/2018-19/releases/20190620sts1tx. Retrieved June 23, 2019.
- The Summit League (April 11, 2017). "Summit League Adds Drake and Illinois State as Men’s Tennis Affiliate Members". Press release. Archived from the original on April 19, 2017. https://web.archive.org/web/20170419195132/http://www.thesummitleague.org/sports/mten/2016-17/releases/20170410ora34j. Retrieved April 20, 2017.
- The Summit League (July 14, 2020). "Northern Colorado to join The Summit League as a baseball affiliate". Press release. https://thesummitleague.org/news/2020/7/14/northern-colorado-to-join-the-summit-league-as-a-baseball-affiliate.aspx. Retrieved July 17, 2020.
- Valparaiso Athletics (June 12, 2017). "Valparaiso University to Join Summit League in Men’s Tennis, Men’s Swimming". Press release. http://www.valpoathletics.com/news/articles/2016-17/17449/valparaiso-university-to-join-summit-league-in-mens-tennis-mens-swimming/#.WT7raBPyu1s. Retrieved June 12, 2017.