Young Harris College Accepted Into Full NCAA Division II Membership
YOUNG HARRIS, Ga. – Young Harris College has been granted full membership status in the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s (NCAA) Division II.
YHC President Cathy Cox and Director of Athletics Randy Dunn were notified during a phone call with NCAA representatives that the Mountain Lions will become active Division II members on Monday, Sept. 1, culminating a three-year transition process for the College that began in July 2011 when the NCAA granted the institution candidacy status.
“It is truly a special day for YHC,” said President Cox. “Our entire campus community has worked extremely hard over the past several years to make this goal a reality. We are thrilled to achieve active membership in Division II.”
The NCAA Division II membership process prepares institutions for success as a Division II athletics program. The process consists of a candidacy period and a provisional period in which institutions function like NCAA members including completion of all necessary paperwork, compliance with all rules and regulations, and adherence to recruiting and scheduling guidelines.
“It’s a great achievement for YHC to be accepted as an active NCAA Division II member,” said Dunn. “It was truly a team effort on behalf of the College administration, coaches and student-athletes.”
The membership process also includes opportunities for education, assessment, and growth as institutions integrate the Division II philosophy, strategic positioning platform, and best practices.
“We’ve had plenty of time to embrace the way the division is structured, and we all feel very prepared for the NCAA,” said Women’s Soccer Head Coach and Assistant Director of Athletics for Community Involvement Kathy Brown. “I love being part of the Peach Belt Conference and can’t wait to climb to the top.”
The Mountain Lions will begin their third season as members of the prestigious PBC this fall. YHC is now eligible for all NCAA postseason competition as well as all PBC postseason tournaments.
“We are very excited that Young Harris College successfully completed the membership process and are now full-fledged members of NCAA Division II,” said PBC commissioner David Brunk. “President Cox and Randy Dunn are to be commended and YHC should become the benchmark for any institution moving into the NCAA ranks. Their dedication to meeting and surpassing every standard has been nothing short of inspirational. They will begin their journey as an NCAA institution with every piece in place to allow them to be competitive on the field and leaders in the division.”
Fifteen Mountain Lion teams compete in nine intercollegiate sports: baseball, basketball, competitive cheerleading, cross country, golf, lacrosse, soccer, softball and tennis.
“Division II is the perfect place for YHC’s student-athletes,” said women’s cross country runner Nicole Smith, a sophomore from Ball Ground, Ga. “It’s a good mix of being able to concentrate on academics, compete in your sport and enjoy college life.”
The 2014-2015 athletics year kicks off Thursday, Sept. 4, when the Mountain Lions host a soccer doubleheader at the YHC Soccer and Lacrosse Field. The women will host Christian Brothers University in a 3:30 p.m. contest followed by the men’s match against Nova Southeastern University at 7 p.m.
To find out more about Young Harris College Athletics, visit yhcathletics.com.