BRAEDEN RUSSELL | firstname.lastname@example.org
The University of Wisconsin-Parkside will join the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) as a full member in 2018-19, Chancellor Deborah L. Ford and Director of Athletics Andrew Gavin announced to the Ranger student-athletes on Monday.
The move started when Parkside officials accepted an invitation from Dr. Donald Bachand, the President of Saginaw Valley State University and the chair of the GLIAC’s Presidents Council. The invitation was extended with unanimous support from the GLIAC’s membership. A symbolic gesture that is important to a Parkside athletic program that was shown little confidence by the GLVC, their previous conference.
“As we embark on a new era of Ranger Athletics and prepare to celebrate 50 years as a University, what an incredible opportunity to join the nation’s premier Division II conference in 2018-19,” Gavin said. “As a conference committed to student success in and out of competition, the values of GLIAC and its membership align closely with the values of UW-Parkside and our athletics department.” Parkside was shown a vote of no confidence by the GLVC when they were hit with a program wide postseason ban for sanctions that are usually associated with financial bans.
Parkside Makes Puts Students First:
UW-Parkside will officially enter the GLIAC on July 1, 2018 and will immediately enjoy complete membership rights, including eligibility to participate in postseason tournaments and championships and full voting rights. Considering that those guarantees weren’t given to the University following their ban by the GLVC this past season. This shows that Parkside lost faith in the GLVC, but most importantly is trying to do right by their student athletes by joining a conference more open to the Rangers program.
“UW Parkside is a top-notch institution with outstanding leadership,” GLIAC Commissioner Kris Dunbar said. “The athletic teams have had proven success in the past and can continue those traditions in the GLIAC. They will be a strong addition to the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.”
In 2018-19, the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference will feature 12-member institutions from Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and with the addition of UW-Parkside, now Wisconsin, sponsoring 21 NCAA Division II sports. In 2016-17, three GLIAC schools won team national championships and seven different schools finished in the top-60 nationally in the Learfield Directors’ Cup. Including Grand Valley State who won the Division 2 Cup. Parkside finished 185th of 266 schools.
Beginning in 2018-19, the conference will consist of Ashland University, Davenport University, Ferris State University, Grand Valley State University, Lake Superior State University, Michigan Technological University, Northern Michigan University, Northwood University, Purdue University Northwest, Saginaw Valley State University, Wayne State University and the University of Wisconsin-Parkside.
UW-Parkside sponsors 15 sports: baseball, men’s and women’s soccer, basketball, indoor/outdoor track and field, cross country, men’s golf, softball, volleyball and wrestling. They will compete as an independent in wrestling, because it is no longer a GLIAC sponsored sport.
Parkside vs the GLIAC:
Last Season the Men’s basketball team went 3-1 vs the GLIAC with a loss to Northern Michigan, and wins against Northwood, Michigan Tech, and Ferris State University, and will play all those teams again this year. The women’s basketball team went 0-4 against the GLIAC last season losing to Grand Valley State, Saginaw Valley State, Northwood University, and Northern Michigan, and will play Ferris State and Northwood again this year. The men’s baseball team went 1-2 on a series against Grand Valley State this past season. The Softball team went 2-1 against the GLIAC with a 3-0 lose to Wayne State, and 6-1 and 5-4 victories over Grand Valley State and Ashland University respectively, and will play both Wayne State University and Ashland next season.