The Summit League

The Summit League
The Summit League
The Summit League logo
Established 1982
Association NCAA
Division Division I non-football
Members 10
Sports fielded 19 (men's: 9; women's: 10)
Region Midwestern United States
Former names Association of Mid-Continent Universities (1982–1989)
Mid-Continent Conference (1989–2007)
Headquarters Elmhurst, Illinois
Commissioner Tom Douple (since 2005)
The Summit League locations

The Summit League (or The Summit) is an NCAA Division I college athletic conference which operates in the Midwestern United States. On June 1, 2007, the conference changed its name from the Mid-Continent Conference.


Current membership

Institution Location Founded Type Enrollment Joined Nickname
Indiana University – Purdue University Fort Wayne Fort Wayne, Indiana 1917 Public 14,300 2007 Mastodons
Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis Indianapolis, Indiana 1969 Public 27,184 1998 Jaguars
University of Missouri–Kansas City Kansas City, Missouri 1933 Public 14,499 1994 Kangaroos
North Dakota State University Fargo, North Dakota 1890 Public 14,186 2007 Bison
Oakland University Rochester, Michigan 1957 Public 17,737 1998 Golden Grizzlies
Oral Roberts University Tulsa, Oklahoma 1963 Private 3,417 1997 Golden Eagles
University of South Dakota Vermillion, South Dakota 1882 Public 10,151 2011 Coyotes
South Dakota State University Brookings, South Dakota 1881 Public 12,851 2007 Jackrabbits
Southern Utah University Cedar City, Utah 1897 Public 7,509 1997 Thunderbirds and Lady Thunderbirds
Western Illinois University Macomb, Illinois 1899 Public 13,602 1982 Leathernecks

Southern Utah and Oral Roberts will leave the Summit League in 2012 to move to the Big Sky Conference and Southland Conference, respectively.[1] [2]

Future members

Institution Location Founded Type Enrollment Year Joins Nickname
University of Nebraska at Omaha Omaha, Nebraska 1908 Public 15,448 2012 Mavericks

The University of Nebraska-Omaha has said it would switch from Division II to Division I to join the Summit League in the fall of 2012.[3]

Locations of current Summit League full member institutions.

Associate members

Former members

Institution Years Moved To
University of Akron 1990–1992 Mid-American Conference
University at Buffalo 1994–1998 Mid-American Conference
Centenary College of Louisiana 2003–2011 American Southwest Conference (to join Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference in July 2012)
Central Connecticut State University 1994–1997 Northeast Conference
Chicago State University 1994–2006 Independent (now in Great West)
Cleveland State University 1982–1994 Horizon League
Eastern Illinois University 1982–1996 Ohio Valley Conference
University of Illinois at Chicago 1982–1994 Horizon League
Northeastern Illinois University 1994–1998 Disbanded sports
Northern Illinois University 1990–1994 Horizon League (now in Mid-American Conference)
University of Northern Iowa 1982–1991 Missouri Valley Conference
Missouri State University 1982–1990 Missouri Valley Conference
Troy University 1994–1997 TAAC (now in Sun Belt Conference)
University of Wisconsin–Green Bay 1982–1994 Horizon League
University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee 1993–1994 Horizon League
Valparaiso University 1982–2007 Horizon League
Wright State University 1991–1994 Horizon League
Youngstown State University 1992–2001 Horizon League



The conference was created in 1982 as the Association of Mid-Continent Universities (or AMCU or AMCU-8, pronounced Am-cue), which it was known as until 1989.[5] The conference sponsored football from 1982 until 1984 at the Division II level, and current members North Dakota State, South Dakota State, Southern Utah, and Western Illinois have Division I FCS (formerly known as Division I-AA) football programs.

Mid-Continent Conference logo, 1982–2007

Horizon and ECC transitions

In 1994, charter members Cleveland State University, the University of Illinois at Chicago, and the University of Wisconsin–Green Bay, as well as newer members University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, Northern Illinois University, and Wright State University left the conference to join the Midwestern Collegiate Conference, now known as the Horizon League.

In response, the Mid-Continent absorbed Central Connecticut State University, Chicago State University, the University at Buffalo, Troy State University (now Troy University), and Northeastern Illinois University from the collapsed East Coast Conference. None of these institutions remain in the league.

Missouri-Kansas City, formerly an independent, also joined the Mid-Continent Conference in 1994.

Declining membership

Eastern Illinois moved to the Ohio Valley Conference in 1996, reducing membership to nine programs. Troy State departed for the Trans America Athletic Conference while Central Connecticut went to the Northeast Conference in 1997. Buffalo joined the Mid-American Conference in 1998 while Northeastern Illinois ceased athletic operations at that time. Oral Roberts University and Southern Utah University replaced the former pair while IUPUI and Oakland University moved into the latter duo's spots a year later.

Youngstown State University switched to the Horizon League in 2001, followed by founding member Valparaiso University in 2007, and seven of the ten current Horizon League programs are former Summit League members. Centenary College stepped into Youngstown State's place in 2003, but Chicago State University announced in the spring of 2006 that it would withdraw from the conference to compete as an independent starting in the 2006-07 school year, dropping membership to seven programs.

Renewed expansion

At the Mid-Continent Conference annual Presidents Council meeting in 2006, conference expansion was discussed at length, and Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW), North Dakota State, and South Dakota State were approved for site visits. On August 30, 2006, IPFW accepted an invitation to join the Mid-Continent Conference as a full member starting July 1, 2007.[6] The following day, North Dakota State and South Dakota State also accepted invitations to join the conference.[7][8]

The Summit League has continued its renewed expansion push with the admission of the University of South Dakota. The Coyotes will begin conference play in the 2011–2012 academic year and become eligible for all championships the following season.[9] Centenary College subsequently announced that it will leave the Summit League following the 2010–2011 campaign.[10]

The University of North Dakota had also been openly rumored to have been courted by the Summit League, but uncertainty over the Fighting Sioux nickname in all likelihood prevented UND's admission. Expectations that UND would join the Summit League came to an end on November 1, 2010, as North Dakota instead accepted an invitation to join the Big Sky Conference, along with current Summit League member Southern Utah. The University of South Dakota entered into very brief negotiations to join the Big Sky as well, rather than continuing their plans to join the Summit. However, South Dakota chose instead to remain with the more compact Summit League (along with other Dakota schools, NDSU and SDSU). Additionally the University of Nebraska at Omaha has announced that it will transition to Division I athletics and join the Summit League July 1, 2012. With the departures of Centenary College, to Division III at the end of the 2010-11 athletic year, Southern Utah University and Oral Roberts, for other conferences at the end of the 2011-12 athletic year, the Summit League will continue with nine institutions, all within the Midwest geographical region.[1] The Summit League has not publicly announced its intentions to expand or to remain at 9 schools.

Membership timeline

University of Nebraska at Omaha University of South Dakota South Dakota State University North Dakota State University Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne Centenary College of Louisiana Oakland University Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis Southern Utah University Oral Roberts University University of Missouri–Kansas City Troy University Northeastern Illinois University Chicago State University Central Connecticut State University University at Buffalo, The State University of New York University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee Youngstown State University Wright State University Northern Illinois University University of Akron Western Illinois University Valparaiso University University of Wisconsin–Green Bay Missouri State University University of Northern Iowa University of Illinois at Chicago Eastern Illinois University Cleveland State University


Men's basketball

Men's basketball in the NCAA tournament

Year Team Seed Results
1983 none
1984 none
1985 none
1986 Cleveland State 14* defeated Indiana
defeated Saint Joseph's
lost to Navy
1987 Southwest Missouri State[11] 13 defeated Clemson
lost to Kansas
1988 Southwest Missouri State 13 lost to UNLV
1989 Southwest Missouri State 14 lost to Seton Hall
1990 Southwest Missouri State 9 lost to North Carolina
Northern Iowa 14 defeated Missouri
lost to Minnesota
1991 Wisconsin–Green Bay 12 lost to Michigan State
Northern Illinois 13* lost to St. John's
1992 Eastern Illinois 15 lost to Indiana
1993 Wright State 16 lost to Indiana
1994 Wisconsin–Green Bay 12 defeated California
lost to Syracuse
1995 none
1996 Valparaiso 14 lost to Arizona
1997 Valparaiso 12 lost to Boston College
1998 Valparaiso 13 defeated Ole Miss
defeated Florida State
lost to Rhode Island
1999 Valparaiso 15 lost to Maryland
2000 Valparaiso 16 lost to Michigan State
2001 Southern Utah 14 lost to Boston College
2002 Valparaiso 13 lost to Kentucky
2003 IUPUI 16 lost to Kentucky
2004 Valparaiso 15 lost to Gonzaga
2005 Oakland 16 defeated Alabama A&M**
Lost to North Carolina
2006 Oral Roberts 16 lost to Memphis
2007 Oral Roberts 14 lost to Washington State
2008 Oral Roberts 13 lost to Pittsburgh
2009 North Dakota State 14 lost to Kansas
2010 Oakland 14 Lost to Pittsburgh
2011 Oakland 13 Lost to Texas

* At-large bid
** Opening round game

Conference facilities

School Basketball arena Capacity Football stadium Capacity Baseball stadium Capacity Soccer stadium Capacity
IPFW Allen County War Memorial Coliseum (men)
Hilliard Gates Sports Center (women)
Non-Football School Outdoor Sports Complex Hefner Soccer Complex 2,000
IUPUI IUPUI Gymnasium 2,215 Non-Football School Non-Baseball School Carrol Stadium 12,100
UMKC Municipal Auditorium
Swinney Recreation Center
Non-Football School Non-Baseball School Stanley H. Durwood Soccer Stadium 850
UNO Omaha Civic Auditorium 9,300 Non-Football School; Formerly Al F. Caniglia Field 9,500 Ballpark at Boys Town UNO Soccer Field
North Dakota State Bison Sports Arena 6,000 Fargodome 19,500 Newman Outdoor Field 4,600 Schlanser Track
Oakland Athletics Center O'Rena 4,005 Non-Football School OU Baseball Field 500 OU Soccer Field
Oral Roberts Mabee Center 10,575 Non-Football School J. L. Johnson Stadium ORU Soccer Complex
South Dakota DakotaDome 10,000 DakotaDome 10,000 Non-Baseball School USD Soccer Field
South Dakota State Frost Arena 6,500 Coughlin-Alumni Stadium 15,000 Erv Huether Field Fishback Soccer Park 1,500
Southern Utah Centrum Arena 5,300 Eccles Coliseum 11,000 Thunderbird Park Thunderbird Soccer Field 600
Western Illinois Western Hall 5,139 Hanson Field 17,168 Alfred D. Boyer Stadium 500 MacKenzie Alumni Field 1,000

Future members in grey. Members leaving in pink.

See also


External links

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