Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
|Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
|Sports fielded||21 (men's: 10; women's: 11)|
|Former names||Inter-Normal Athletic Conference of Wisconsin (1913-1926)
Wisconsin State Teachers College Conference (1926-1951)
Wisconsin State College Conference (1951-1964)
Wisconsin State University Athletic Conference (1964-1997)
|Commissioner||Gary Karner (since July, 1996)|
The Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) is a college athletic conference that competes in the NCAA's Division III. As the name implies, member teams are located in the state of Wisconsin, although there are three associate members from Minnesota and one from Michigan. All full members are part of the University of Wisconsin System.
In 1913, representatives from Wisconsin's eight normal schools—Superior Normal School (now the University of Wisconsin-Superior), River Falls State Normal School (now the University of Wisconsin-River Falls), Stevens Point Normal School (now the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point), La Crosse State Normal School (now the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse), Oshkosh State Normal School (now the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh), Whitewater Normal School (now the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater), Milwaukee State Normal School (now the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee) and Platteville Normal School (now the University of Wisconsin-Platteville)--met in Madison to organize the Inter-Normal Athletic Conference of Wisconsin. The Stout Institute (now the University of Wisconsin-Stout) joined in 1914, followed by Eau Claire State Normal School (now the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire) in 1917.
The conference evolved with the growing educational mission of its member schools. It changed its name to the Wisconsin State Teachers College Conference in 1926, and the Wisconsin State College Conference in 1951. Finally, in 1964, it became the Wisconsin State University Conference. The conference remained unusually stable over the years; the only change in membership being UW-Milwaukee's departure in 1964.
In 1971, the member schools of the WSUC joined with the University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Wisconsin-Parkside and Carthage College to form the Wisconsin Women's Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. By 1975, UW-Milwaukee, Carroll College, the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and Marquette University had also joined. With the dissolution of the Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for Women in 1982, the member schools joined their male counterparts in either the NCAA or NAIA. By 1993, the non-NCAA Division III members had all dropped out, resulting in the WWIAC having the same membership as the WSUC. Under the circumstances, a merger was inevitable. In 1996, Gary Karner was named commissioner of both the WSUC and the WWIAC. The two conferences formally merged in 1997 to form the current WIAC.
Effective with the 2001-02 academic year, Lawrence University joined the conference in the sport of wrestling. Gustavus Adolphus College (Minn.), Hamline University (Minn.) and Winona State University (Minn.) became members of the conference in the sport of women's gymnastics during the 2004-05 academic year. In 2009-10, the conference added men’s soccer as a sponsored sport with the announcement of Finlandia University (Mich.) as an affiliate member. Lawrence discontinued its affiliation with the WIAC in wrestling.
The ninth oldest conference in the nation, the WIAC celebrated its Centennial year during the 2012-13 academic year. Additionally, the WIAC is the most successful NCAA Division III conference in history, boasting NCAA National Championships in 15 different sports. At the beginning of the 2011-12 academic year, the conference had claimed a nation-leading 92 NCAA National Championships.
To celebrate its Centennial, the conference named All-Time Teams in each sport that is currently or was previously recognized as a "championship" sport within the conference. Furthermore, the WIAC commissioned a commemorative work of art, created by Tim Cortes, and has also created a 2-year calendar in celebration of its Centennial.
The Centennial Celebration is headlined by its Centennial Banquet to be held on August 4, 2012 at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wis. Among the honorees at this event will be the All-Time Team members and the inaugural class to the WIAC Hall of Fame.
|Current Conference||WIAC Sport|
|Finlandia University||Lions||Hancock, Michigan
|1896||Private||500||NCAA D-III Independent (men's)
|Gustavus Adolphus College||Golden Gusties||St. Peter, Minnesota
|Hamline University||Pipers||Saint Paul, Minnesota
|Winona State University||Warriors||Winona, Minnesota
(NCAA Division II)
|University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee||Panthers||Milwaukee, Wisconsin
(NCAA Division I)
Member institutions field men's and women's teams in cross country, basketball, track and field, swimming and diving, and soccer. Men's teams are fielded for baseball, football, ice hockey, and wrestling. Women's teams are fielded for golf, gymnastics, softball, tennis and volleyball.
|School||Football stadium||Capacity||Basketball arena||Capacity|
|UW–Eau Claire||Carson Park||6,500||W. L. Zorn Arena||2,450|
|UW–La Crosse||Veterans Memorial Stadium||10,000||Mitchell Hall||2,880|
|UW–Oshkosh||Titan Stadium||9,800||Kolf Sports Center||5,800|
|UW–Platteville||Ralph E. Davis Pioneer Stadium||10,000||Williams Fieldhouse||2,300|
|UW–River Falls||Ramer Field||4,800||Karges Center||2,000|
|UW–Stevens Point||Goerke Field||4,000||Quandt Fieldhouse||3,281|
|UW–Stout||Don and Nona Williams Stadium||5,000||Johnson Fieldhouse||1,800|
|UW–Superior||Non-Football School||N/A||Mertz Morterelli Memorial Fieldhouse||2,500|
|UW–Whitewater||Forrest Perkins Stadium||13,200||Williams Center||3,000|