PLNU cleared the final step of the NCAA’s Management Council approval process and will officially join the NCAA on Sept. 1 as a full-fledged Division II member.
“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 11 Point Loma athletic teams 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 Div. II,” 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 Div. II conference and I’m looking forward to PLNU’s full participation at the NCAA level.”
The Sea Lions have had the 2014-15 season in their sights since the beginning of the transition process. 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. Point Loma student-athletes also collected 23 All-American honors and 31 NCCAA scholar-athlete awards.
The 2014-15 season will also mark the third year for PLNU as members of the Pacific West Conference, the largest NCAA Division II conference in the West Region. The Sea Lions saw a 44-game turnaround in their team’s PacWest records from year one to year two as they posted a .570 winning percentage in 2013-14 (131-99). Point Loma also improved from ninth to sixth (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.
Point Loma will be part of an eight-school class that will bring the NCAA Division II to 300 active members. PLNU was joined by fellow Nazarene universities Southern and Trevecca, along with longtime Golden State Athletic Conference rival Azusa Pacific.