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Spring Hill College will not advance to active NCAA status

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The Division II Membership Committee of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) notified Spring Hill College (SHC) President Christopher P. Puto, PhD on Friday that, while impressed by SHC’s compliance program and enhancements to its athletics department, it will not recommend to the NCAA Division II Management Council that the Badgers be allowed to advance to full membership. The Membership Committee cited the College’s current accreditation status with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) as the sole reason for its decision.

The recommendation of the Membership Committee must still be reviewed and voted upon by the Division II Management Council, which has the options of either approving or overturning the recommendation of the Membership Committee. If the Management Council approves the Committee’s recommendation regarding SHC, the College has the option of pursuing an appeal of the Management Council’s decision.

“Naturally, we are disappointed with the recommendation of the Membership Committee, however we understand the rationale for the decision,” said President Puto. “As a college, we remain optimistic for a positive outcome through the Management Council’s review process.”

If the committee’s recommendation ultimately stands, Spring Hill College’s 16 varsity athletic programs would continue to play full schedules of NCAA Division II, Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) and Gulf South Conference (GSC) competition during the 2017-18 regular seasons, as these schedules have been finalized. However, teams would not be eligible for conference or NCAA post-season play.

“For the sake of our student-athletes, I am hopeful the Management Council’s review will lead to a decision that allows us to move forward towards full membership,” stated Director of Athletics Jim Hall. “If the Membership Committee’s recommendation is approved, we will carefully consider our options and develop a plan for an appeal of the decision.”

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