McKendree University Advances to Candidacy Year Two in NCAA Division II Membership Process


(LEBANON, Ill., July 11)—McKendree University learned today that it has cleared the first step in its transition towards full NCAA Division II membership.

On Monday, university officials were informed that McKendree was approved for Candidacy Year Two in the NCAA Division II membership process. Typically, the transition to NCAA Division II membership is handled in a three-year timeline, and Monday's approval capped a rigorous but successful first year in the process.

“We are extremely pleased with today's news from the NCAA regarding our approval for Candidacy Year Two status as we continue our transition towards NCAA membership,” said McKendree director of athletics Dr. Todd Reynolds. “It is good news for our athletic department and it is good news for McKendree University as a whole. Although we have successfully completed the first phase in this process, there is a considerable amount of work to be done. However, I am confident that all the requirements and deadlines necessary to move along in this process will be met in a timely fashion. I would like to thank all those who have contributed to the news we received today. It has truly been a comprehensive effort from our entire campus community."

Nearly one year ago, McKendree was approved for the NCAA Division II process. In that 12-month span, school officials have been hard at work to implement policies and procedures that are asked of potential new members. Among the highlights include the hiring of a full-time compliance officer, the designation of a senior women's administrator, the creation of a compliance handbook and the update of the existing student-athlete handbook. In addition, McKendree also created several new committees in relationship to NCAA Division II issues, most notably a Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC) which is comprised of one student-athlete from each of the institution's 21 sports.

McKendree fulfilled one major goal in the membership process back in October when it was accepted into membership of the Great Lakes Valley College (GLVC). The Bearcats' became the 17th member of the league, which is considered by many as one of NCAA Division II's premier conferences.

The culmination of the Candidacy Year One phase was the completion of a detailed year-end report, which was submitted to the NCAA national office in late May. The report was reviewed by NCAA officials before the organization recommended that McKendree had satisfied its requirements to move into the Year Two process.

If McKendree successfully completes Candidacy Year Two, the institution would be provisional members of NCAA Division II in 2012-13, with full membership projected by the 2013-14 academic year.

The Bearcats wrapped up their final season as members of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and the American Midwest Conference (AMC) during the 2010-11 academic year. McKendree claimed its 11th consecutive AMC President's Cup award as the league's all-sport champion. In addition, Bearcat teams qualified for 12 NAIA national championship events last year.