The day has arrived for Point Loma Nazarene University to proudly be known as an active member of the NCAA. Having passed the final step of the NCAA Management Council approval process, PLNU will officially join the NCAA as a full-fledged Division II member on September 1, 2014.
“I am so impressed and proud of the high quality, collaborative work done by several individuals and departments on our campus in achieving this significant milestone,” said PLNU Athletic Director Ethan Hamilton. “PLNU is truly a special place, and the NCAA made regular mention of this. I am very excited for the future experiences of our student-athletes, and look forward to continued opportunities to help them grow in every facet of their life.”
All PLNU athletic teams, 11 in total, are now eligible for the postseason in both the Pacific West Conference and the NCAA, as well as all NCAA individual and team awards.
“The three-year transition process has strengthened our athletic program and prepared us for full participation in NCAA DII,” said PLNU president Bob Brower. “Completing the full admission process to NCAA is an exciting step for PLNU athletics. The PacWest Conference is a leading NCAA DII conference and I’m looking forward to PLNU’s full participation at the NCAA level.
Since the beginning of the transition process, the Sea Lions have had the 2014-15 year in their sights. Despite not having the opportunity to participate in the NCAA playoffs, PLNU thrived across multiple sports at the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) Championships. Eight teams participated in NCCAA postseason play and both the men’s basketball and women’s volleyball teams brought home national titles. PLNU student-athletes also collected 23 All-American honors and 31 NCCAA Scholar-Athlete awards.
2014-15 will also mark the third year for PLNU as a member of the Pacific West Conference, the largest NCAA Division II conference in the West Region. From year-one to year-two, the Sea Lions saw a 44-game turnaround in their team’s PacWest records, as they posted a .570 winning percentage in 2013-14 (131-99). PLNU also improved from ninth to sixth, out of 13 schools, in the PacWest Commissioner’s Cup standings and its student-athletes accumulated a 3.3 grade point average during the academic year.
This September, PLNU will be part of an eight-school class that will bring the NCAA Division to 300 active members. PLNU was joined by fellow Nazarene universities Southern and Trevecca, along with longtime Golden State Athletic Conference rival Azusa Pacific.