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Campbell to Leave A-Sun for Big South

Category: Atlantic Sun Expansion & Realignment, Big South Expansion & Realignment, Featured News

Campbell University athletics will rejoin the Big South Conference in two years, making the move in all but three sports.
Three sources close to the athletic department confirmed the move Tuesday, the same day a press conference was announced touting “an exciting new direction for Campbell University Athletics.”
The Camels will make public their plans to leave the Atlantic Sun Conference at 11 a.m. Thursday in the John W. Pope Jr. Convocation Center. Football, wrestling and women’s swimming will not be affected by the shift.

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  • Those rules have so many addendums to them they are impossible to understand. The Atlantic Sun is in no danger of losing its automatic bid.

  • TLHKnight

    Also, it has come to my attention that Savannah State qualifies as a core member, so there are three independents (since Great West doesn’t qualify as a conference yet) that are core members:

    Savannah State
    UT-Pan American
    Chicago State

    Savannah State is right in the middle of the A-Sun’s geography, so if there is, in fact, a core member issue, you’d have to think they’d be a top candidate.

  • TLHKnight

    B. Administrative: Amend, as follows:

    “ Additional Requirements, Men’s Basketball. The member conference must include seven core institutions. For the purposes of this legislation, *core refers to an institution that has been an active member of Division I the eight preceding years.* Further, the continuity-of-membership requirement shall be met only if a minimum of six core institutions have conducted conference competition together in Division I the preceding five years in men’s basketball. There shall be no exception to the five-year waiting period. Any new member added to a member conference that satisfies these requirements shall be immediately eligible to represent the conference as the automatic qualifier.”

    I starred the important phrase. UNF and Kennesaw don’t count as core members in this case until they have been active D1 members for 8 years.

  • Kennesaw and North Florida both get full D-1 status on July 1, so they’ll be qualified. They’ve also been in the conference since they started competing at the D-1 level, so it’s all fine.

  • TLHKnight


    I think you’re missing the point that the A-Sun doesn’t have 7 core member schools with Campbell leaving. Unless they find that 7th member (because none of the provisional schools like Kennesaw, UNF etc. will qualify by then), they’d need an NCAA waiver to keep their autobid.

  • I would think tht any changes would come a few years down the road when the core group was in place. I dont’ see a mass exodus happening this year or next, so I think the A-Sun will be alright. Also consider that the S-Sun will likely be a home to any other southern region upgrades.

  • Won’t this threaten the A-Sun’s autobid to the men’s basketball tournament?

    As I understand it, a conference needs 7 core member schools, 6 of which have been together for 5 years to be eligible for a men’s basketball autobid. I believe the NCAA does not consider FGCU, Kennesaw, SC-Upstate, or N Florida as core members for several more years, so The Atlantic Sun would be down to six members in the eyes of the NCAA.

    So they have the 6 members that have been together for 5 years, but they don’t seem to have the 7th member. What are their options?

    I see:

    -Centenary, who is looking at D3

    – UNO, who has a budget crisis and might want a conference with lower requirements, and

    – UTPA (Texas-Pan American), who I believe has been in D-1 for a long-time and qualifies as a core member. Not great on travel, but UTPA would love to get out of the Great West, and the invite could be done with the understanding that UTPA will keep looking for more appropriate homes (travel would suck to UTPA for the other A-Sun teams).

  • What will this do to the Atlantic Sun's autobid to the NCAA basketball tourney?

    If I'm correct, a conference needs 7 core member schools, 6 of which have been together for 5 years to be eligible for a men's basketball autobid. The NCAA does not consider FGCU, Kennesaw, SC-Upstate, or N Florida. The Atlantic Sun would be down to six core members – Belmont, Lipscomb, Stetson, Mercer, Jacksonville & ETSU.

    So they've got the 6 members that have been together for 5 years, but they don't have that 7th total member. There have been rumors of Centenary leaving the Summit (probably to D3) and New Orleans leaving the Sun Belt (budget); are either of those to the A-Sun a possibility?

    Otherwise, despite the travel headache it creates, the only present independent that is a core member, as best I can determine, is UT-Pan American. Is there any other school that the A-Sun could feasibly add that counts as a core member? Longwood and NJIT do not.


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