The Lindenwood University Board of Directors today authorized the administration to begin the application process for NCAA Division II membership.
Board Chairman Jim J. Shoemake said Lindenwood, which currently competes in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), would submit its NCAA application by June 1.
“Lindenwood has made great advancement in recent years and has experienced tremendous growth in academics, enrollment, and facilities,” said President James D. Evans. “While the NAIA is a quality organization and Lindenwood has been a proud member for nearly 40 years, we feel that NCAA Division II is the best fit for our institution in the future."
Athletic Director John Creer said Lindenwood should know by July 1 whether it will be accepted into NCAA candidacy. For two years, Lindenwood would remain a member of the NAIA and Heart of America Athletic Conference. In 2012-2013, the school would be a provisional member of the NCAA. The fourth year, 2013-2014, the NCAA would vote to make Lindenwood an active member.
A committee made up of Lindenwood administrators, coaches, faculty, staff, and alumni began studying a move to NCAA Division II last summer and recommended the switch.
The Lindenwood University athletics department is currently one of the largest in the country, sponsoring 46 programs and giving collegiate athletic opportunities to approximately 1,500 student-athletes. Lindenwood has won 35 national championships since 2002, and regularly finishes among the top NAIA programs in the NACDA Directors’ Cup standings, which judges athletics departments for the overall success of their program.