South Atlantic Conference

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South Atlantic Conference
(SAC)
South Atlantic Conference logo
Established 1975
Association NCAA
Division Division II
Members 12
Sports fielded 18 (men's: 9; women's: 9)
Region Southeastern United States
Headquarters Rock Hill, South Carolina
Commissioner Patrick Britz (since 2008)
Website thesac.com
Locations
South Atlantic Conference locations

The South Atlantic Conference (SAC) is a collegiate athletic conference which operates in the southeastern United States. It participates in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)'s Division II level. The SAC was founded in 1975 as a football-only conference and became an all-sports conference beginning with the 1989–90 season.

The league currently sponsors nine sports for men (football, cross country, soccer, basketball, baseball, lacrosse, outdoor track & field, tennis and golf) and nine sports for women (volleyball, cross country, soccer, basketball, lacrosse, outdoor track & field, softball, tennis and golf).

History[edit]

The distant forerunner of the South Atlantic Conference was the North State Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (NSIAC). The NSIAC was formed when the "Little Six", as it was called, broke from the North Carolina Intercollegiate Athletic Conference in 1930. These charter members included such as Appalachian State Teachers College (now Appalachian State University), Lenoir–Rhyne College (now Lenoir–Rhyne University), Atlantic Christian College (now Barton College), Catawba College, Guilford College, Elon College (now Elon University), and High Point College (now High Point University).

The North State continued to grow over the next 30 years, adding Western Carolina University (1933), East Carolina University (1947) and Pfeiffer College (now Pfeiffer University) (1960). A name change became necessary when the league accepted Newberry College as its first member from the state of South Carolina in 1961. The league took on the name Carolinas Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (CIAC) on May 20th of that year.

The CIAC saw several changes in the following years as East Carolina withdrew from the league in 1962. Appalachian State and Western Carolina followed in 1971 and 1976. All three landed in the Southern Conference (SoCon).

The South Atlantic Conference was founded in 1975 solely as a football conference. The league received its name from a contest in which Kurt Brenneman of Greensboro, North Carolina became the first to submit the SAC-8 moniker.

The SAC-8 consisted of Carson–Newman College (now Carson–Newman University), Catawba College, Elon College, Gardner–Webb College (now Gardner–Webb University), Lenoir-Rhyne College, Mars Hill College (now Mars Hill University), Newberry College', and Presbyterian College. Dr. Fred Bentley, of Mars Hill College, was named league president for its inaugural year, by a vote of the member institutions.

After the first season of play in the SAC-8, the Bears of Lenoir-Rhyne College captured the first football title.

In 1989, the league's 15th year of operation, the South Atlantic Conference became a comprehensive, multi-sport conference. Doug Echols was named the league's first Commissioner. That year the South Atlantic Conference sponsored 10 sports - football, men's and women's basketball, baseball, softball, men's soccer, volleyball, men's golf, men's and women's tennis. Later the conference grew to 14 championship sports by adding women's soccer (1990), men's and women's cross country (1993) and women's golf (1999). In 2013, the sports of men's and women's lacrosse and men's and women's track and field were added, increasing the number of championship sports to 18.

The South Atlantic Conference was composed of the same eight member institutions from 1975–76 until 1988–89, when Wingate College (now Wingate University) replaced Newberry College as the eighth member institution. Newberry College later re-joined the conference in the 1996–97 season.

In July of 1998, Tusculum College was admitted as a member of the league, and Lincoln Memorial University began play in the conference in the 2006-07 academic year. Brevard College was admitted to the SAC as a provisional member in 2007 and a full member in 2008.

In 2008, Echols retired after serving as Commissioner for 19 years and Patrick Britz was hired as the new Commissioner.

In July 2010, Anderson University became the league's 10th member. Three years later in July 2013, Coker College and Queens University of Charlotte joined the conference.[1]

Member schools[edit]

Charter members[edit]

Current members[edit]

Institution Location Founded Enrollment Nickname Colors Joined
Anderson University Anderson, South Carolina 1911 2,900 Trojans           2010
Brevard College Brevard, North Carolina 1934 700 Tornados           2008
Carson–Newman University Jefferson City, Tennessee 1851 2,115 Eagles           1975
Catawba College Salisbury, North Carolina 1851 1,300 Indians           1975
Coker College Hartsville, South Carolina 1908 1,000 Cobras           2013
Lenoir–Rhyne University Hickory, North Carolina 1891 1,800 Bears           1975
Lincoln Memorial University Harrogate, Tennessee 1897 2,579 Railsplitters           2006
Mars Hill University Mars Hill, North Carolina 1856 1,300 Lions           1975
Newberry College Newberry, South Carolina 1856 930 Wolves           1975;
1996
Queens University of Charlotte Charlotte, North Carolina 1857 2,100 Royals           2013
Tusculum College Tusculum, Tennessee 1794 2,053 Pioneers           1998
Wingate University Wingate, North Carolina 1896 2,300 Bulldogs           1989
  • Newberry College left the SAC in 1989 (as a football member), and re-joined in 1996 (as an all-sport member). Wingate replaced Newberry College as the final member for the birth of the all-sport SAC in 1989. See Charter members table.

Former members[edit]

Institution Location Founded Nickname Joined Left Current
Conference
Elon University Elon, North Carolina 1889 Phoenix 1975 1997 Colonial Athletic
(NCAA D-I)
Gardner–Webb University Boiling Springs, North Carolina 1905 Runnin' Bulldogs 1975 2000 Big South
(NCAA D-I)
Presbyterian College Clinton, South Carolina 1880 Blue Hose 1975 2007 Big South
(NCAA D-I)
  • All former members were charter members of the SAC-8 football era, and the SAC all-sport era.

Membership timeline[edit]

 Full member (all sports)   Full member (non-football)   Associate member (football-only)   Associate member (sport) 

Sports[edit]

Conference sports
Sport Men's Women's
Baseball Green tickY
Basketball Green tickY Green tickY
Cross Country Green tickY Green tickY
Football Green tickY
Golf Green tickY Green tickY
Lacrosse Green tickY Green tickY
Soccer Green tickY Green tickY
Softball Green tickY
Tennis Green tickY Green tickY
Track & Field Outdoor Green tickY Green tickY
Volleyball Green tickY

Men's sponsored sports by school[edit]

School Baseball Basketball Cross
Country
Football Golf Lacrosse Soccer Tennis Track
& Field
Outdoor
Total
SAC
Sports
Anderson Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 7
Brevard College Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 9
Carson-Newman Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 8
Catawba College Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 8
Coker College Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 8
Lenoir-Rhyne Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 9
Lincoln Memorial Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 8
Mars Hill Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 9
Newberry College Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 7
Queens Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 7
Tusculum College Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 8
Wingate Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 9
Totals 11 12 12 8 12 9 12 12 9 97

Women's sponsored sports by school[edit]

School Basketball Cross
Country
Golf Lacrosse Soccer Softball Tennis Track
& Field
Outdoor
Volleyball Total
SAC
Sports
Anderson Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 8
Brevard College Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 9
Carson-Newman Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 8
Catawba College Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 8
Coker College Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 9
Lenoir-Rhyne Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 9
Lincoln Memorial Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 9
Mars Hill Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 8
Newberry College Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 8
Queens Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 9
Tusculum College Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 7
Wingate Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 9
Totals 12 12 12 8 12 12 12 9 12 101

Other sponsored sports by school[edit]

School Men Women
Swimming
& Diving
Track
& Field
Indoor
Volleyball Wrestling Equestrian Field
Hockey
Swimming
& Diving
Track
& Field
Indoor
Anderson IND IND IND
Carson-Newman BMC IND BMC IND
Catawba College BMC BMC
Coker College IND IND
Lenoir-Rhyne BMC IND IHSA BMC IND
Mars Hill ASC IND ASC IND
Newberry College IND ECAC
Queens BMC IND BMC IND
Wingate BMC IND BMC IND
  • — D-I sport
  • ASC — Appalachian Swimming Conference
  • BMC — Bluegrass Mountain Conference

Conference stadia and arenas[edit]

School Football[2] Basketball[3]
Stadium Capacity Arena Capacity
Anderson Trojans non-football school Abney Athletic Center 1,500
Brevard Tornados Brevard Memorial Stadium 5,000 Boshamer Gymnasium 1,000
Carson–Newman Eagles Burke–Tarr Stadium 5,500 Holt Fieldhouse 2,000
Catawba Indians Shuford Stadium 4,500 Goodman Gym 3,500
Coker Cobras non-football school Timberlake-Lawton Gymnasium 700
Lenoir–Rhyne Bears Moretz Stadium 8,500 Shuford Memorial Gymnasium 2,770
Lincoln Memorial Railsplitters non-football school Tex Turner Arena 5,000
Mars Hill Lions Meares Stadium 5,000 Stanford Arena 2,800
Newberry Wolves Setzler Field 4,000 Eleazer Arena 1,600
Queens Royals non-football school Curry Arena 2,500
Tusculum Pioneers Pioneer Field 3,500 Pioneer Arena 2,500
Wingate Bulldogs Irwin Belk Stadium 3,000 Cuddy Arena 2,300

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.thesac.com/about/history
  2. ^ 2007 South Atlantic Conference Football Guide
  3. ^ 2007 South Atlantic Conference Basketball Guide

External links[edit]