Maryville Joins GLVC Athletic Conference


Great Lakes Valley Conference Presidents voted on October 7, 2008, to accept the Faculty Athletics Representatives’ unanimous recommendation that Maryville University be admitted into the conference. Maryville will become a voting member on November 1, 2008, and will begin GLVC competition during fall 2009.

“The Great Lakes Valley Conference is pleased to welcome Maryville University to the league,” said GLVC Conference Commissioner Jim Naumovich. “(Maryville) boasts an outstanding academic and solid athletic program and is well positioned to make the transition from NCAA Division III to Division II. The support of Dr. Lombardi, President, the leadership from Athletic Director Tony Duckworth, the staff, administration and coaches as well as the school’s geographic location in St. Louis, are all positive factors cited by our conference members when considering their application for membership. We look forward to including Maryville in our 2009-10 schedules and wish them the best of luck in the GLVC.”

Tradition and Transformation: Maryville’s Strategic Plan for 2014 provides a blueprint for Maryville’s transformation from one of the finest universities in St. Louis to one of the truly great universities in the Midwest. Reclassifying to NCAA Division II is an important component of the strategic plan and acceptance into the Great Lakes Valley Conference allows Maryville to move this portion of the strategic plan forward.

“We are thrilled with our admission into the Great Lakes Valley Conference,” said Maryville University President Mark Lombardi. “Joining the GLVC is another vital step in the realization of Maryville University’s strategic vision. A top quality education combined with competitive Division II athletics makes Maryville among the outstanding private universities in the Midwest.”

Maryville has been a member of NCAA Division III since 1978, and 2008-2009 will be its final year of affiliation with the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. Over its 30 year history, the Saints have made 13 appearances in NCAA post-season tournaments. Most recently, the women’s basketball 2007-08 team set the NCAA Division III record for most consecutive conference wins with 76; a streak that is still active.

Maryville has 13 intercollegiate varsity teams (baseball, softball, volleyball, men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s soccer, men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s tennis and men’s and women’s cross country). The Saints are in the Exploratory Year One in the reclassification process to NCAA Division II.

“From my perspective, the Great Lakes Valley Conference is the premier NCAA Division II conference in the country,” said Maryville Director of Athletics Tony Duckworth. “The GLVC embodies the balance between academic and athletics excellence which is the core of Division II athletics. Maryville University is extremely excited to be part of this exceptional league.”

The timeline to reclassify to NCAA Division II will be a three year process. After successful completion of the two year exploratory period, Maryville must be invited to enter the provisional year and Maryville’s readiness to become an active member will continue to be
evaluated. At the conclusion of three year process, Maryville must be invited to active Division II membership.

University of Illinois-Springfield joins Maryville as new members along with the current 13 members of the GLVC. Those include: Bellarmine University (Louisville, Ky.), Drury University (Springfield, Mo.), Kentucky Wesleyan (Owensboro, Ky.), Lewis University (Romeoville, Ill.), Northern Kentucky University (Highland Heights, Ky.), Quincy University (Quincy, Ill.), Rockhurst University (Kansas City, Mo.), Saint Joseph’s College (Rensselaer, Ind.), University of Indianapolis (Indianapolis, Ind.), University of Missouri Science and Technology (Rolla, Mo.), University of Missouri-St. Louis (St. Louis, Mo.), University of Southern Indiana (Evansville, Ind.) and University of Wisconsin-Parkside (Kenosha, Wis.).

The GLVC was founded in 1978 and is the third-largest Division II conference in the country. Over 3,500 student-athletes annually compete for 17 conference championships in 10 sports. Maryville University, founded in 1872, is a four-year, private university located in west St. Louis County. Ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of America’s Best Colleges in the Midwest, Maryville University students may choose from 50 academic programs, including degrees at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels. Among recent graduates, 94 percent are employed or attending graduate school. More than 15,000 Maryville alumni work and live in the St. Louis region.

What others are saying….
“Drury University is delighted to welcome Maryville University to the GLVC. They share our belief that offering a broad range of competitive sports to student-athletes enriches their life as well as that of the university.”
Todd Parnell, Drury University President

“Drury University is very excited to have Maryville University join us as a member of the Great Lakes Valley Conference. We have been extremely impressed with Maryville’s commitment to the process of reclassifying to Division II. The vision and leadership of the university and the athletic department is also something that impressed us greatly. We look forward to a longstanding relationship with Maryville and hope for a very respectful rivalry to develop between our institutions. Congratulations on this historic move and welcome to the GLVC.”
Patrick Atwell, Drury University Director of Athletics

“I feel that Maryville University will be an excellent addition to the GLVC. It geographically fits and expands the St. Louis market for the GLVC. Maryville has an excellent academic reputation and fits greatly with the other GLVC schools of academic and athletic balance. The commitment by Maryville leadership will result in wining results on and off the field.”
Dan Schumacher, Lewis University Director of Athletics

“Within the mission of Maryville Athletics, our goal is to give our student-athletes the best experience possible as a part of their co-curricular education. Joining a conference with the prestige and exceptional athletic and academic history of the GLVC enables us as coaches to provide our student-athletes with an experience that is incomparable in all of NCAA DIII and DII. I am truly excited about developing relationships and beginning the great challenges that are ahead of us as a member of the Great Lakes Valley Conference.”
Matt Rogers, Maryville University Head Men’s Basketball Coach

“Speaking as the Faculty Athletic Representative I am excited and thrilled about our future involvement in Division II athletics. I feel it will enhance our diversity in not only our student body but also within our academic programs, creating an expansion of our existing programs
and facilitating growth in new areas of study. I anticipate the Maryville community to be supportive during our transition and to continue to appreciate the hard work and dedication of our student/athletes.”
Jack A. Bennett, Maryville University Faculty Athletic Representative

“I am excited to be a part of this move to the GLVC as we will see much growth within our university through academics and athletic competition.”
Stacey Eagleston, Maryville University Athletics Senior Woman Administrator

“The Great Lakes Valley Conference is icing on the cake in our process of reclassifying to Division II. The GLVC is an outstanding conference with superb competition that will help our programs rise to a new level. Our acceptance to the GLVC is going to add a new level of excitement to our student body and our student-athletes. I am proud to be a part of this process and the Great Lakes Valley Conference.”
Melissa Hurley, Maryville University Head Softball Coach

“Maryville University’s reclassification to NCAA Division II is very exciting. It puts the University and the students in the best possible position to grow academically and athletically.”
Jeff Senior, Maryville University SAAC President

Contact: KatieJo Kuhens @ 529.9312