|Established||June 18, 1982|
|Division||Division I non-football|
|Members||9 Full (1 Associate)|
|Sports fielded||19 (men's: 9; women's: 10)|
Association of Mid-Continent Universities (1982–1989)|
Mid-Continent Conference (1989–2007)
|Commissioner||Tom Douple (since 2005)|
The Summit League, or The Summit, is an NCAA Division I college athletic conference which operates in the Midwestern United States. On June 1, 2007, the conference changed its name from the Mid-Continent Conference.
Current full members
|Founded||Type||Enrollment|| U.S. News
|University of Denver|| Denver, Colorado
|$403,466,570||2013||Pioneers|| Crimson & Gold|
|Indiana University – Purdue University Fort Wayne|| Fort Wayne, Indiana
|$46,433,698||2007||Mastodons|| Royal Blue & White|
|Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis|| Indianapolis, Indiana
|$709,877,078||1998||Jaguars|| Old Gold & Crimson|
|University of Nebraska Omaha|| Omaha, Nebraska
|$4,550,516||2012||Mavericks|| Crimson & Black|
|North Dakota State University|| Fargo, North Dakota
|$103,000,000||2007||Bison|| Green & Yellow|
|Oral Roberts University|| Tulsa, Oklahoma
|$40,490,533|| 1997 *
|Golden Eagles|| Vegas Gold & Navy Blue|
|University of South Dakota|| Vermillion, South Dakota
|$182,335,563||2011||Coyotes|| Vermillion & White|
|South Dakota State University|| Brookings, South Dakota
|$95,961,474||2007||Jackrabbits|| Blue & Yellow|
|Western Illinois University|| Macomb, Illinois
|$32,134,249||1982 †||Leathernecks|| Purple & Gold|
* - Oral Roberts University was a previous member of the conference from 1997–98 to 2011–12, before re-joining in 2014.
# - "RNP" is an abbreviation for "Ranked Not Published" used by U.S. News & World Report in its rankings of colleges and universities.
† - The Mid-Con did not sponsor women's sports until 1992–93. Before that time, Western Illinois had been a member of the Gateway Collegiate Athletic Conference, which began as a women's-only conference and added football in 1985; WIU was a member of both sides of the conference. When the Gateway merged its women's side into the Missouri Valley Conference, WIU moved its women's sports into the Mid-Con, but has kept its football team in the Gateway (now known as the Missouri Valley Football Conference) to this day.
Current associate members
|Eastern Illinois University||Charleston, Illinois||1895||Public||9,775|| 2005–06sw.dv.
|Panthers||OVC|| swimming and diving,|
Former full members
The Summit League has twenty-one former members.
- - The then-Mid-Continent Conference did not sponsor women's sports until the 1992–93 school year. Cleveland State, UIC, Northern Illinois, Valparaiso, Green Bay, and Wright State were all members of the women's-only North Star Conference until the Mid-Con began sponsoring women's sports, effectively absorbing the NSC.
- - As noted before, the Mid-Con did not sponsor women's sports until 1992–93. Before that time, Eastern Illinois had been a member of the Gateway Collegiate Athletic Conference, which began as a women's-only conference and added football in 1985; EIU was a member of both sides of the conference. When the Gateway merged its women's side into the Missouri Valley Conference, EIU moved its women's sports into the Mid-Con, but kept its football team in the Gateway until it moved its entire athletic program into the Ohio Valley Conference in 1996.
Former associate members
The association was created on June 18, 1982 at the O'Hare Hilton Hotel in Chicago, Illinois as the Association of Mid-Continent Universities (or AMCU or AMCU-8, pronounced Am-cue), which it was known as until 1989. The conference sponsored football from 1982 until 1984 at the Division I-AA level (now Division I FCS), and current members North Dakota State, South Dakota, South Dakota State, and Western Illinois have FCS football programs.
Changes and the addition of women's sports
In the early 1990s, the conference saw its first changes. Southwest Missouri State departed for membership in the Missouri Valley Conference as the University of Akron and Northern Illinois University joined in 1990. Then Wright State University joined in 1991 as Northern Iowa followed Southwest Missouri State to the MVC.
Major changes came to the conference in 1992. First, Akron left for the Mid-American Conference (MAC) and was replaced by another Ohio school, Youngstown State University. More significantly, the Mid-Continent added women's sports by absorbing the North Star Conference (NSC), a women's-only league whose final seven members had all been in the Mid-Continent. All of the final NSC members except for Akron moved their women's sports into the Mid-Continent. At the same time, Eastern Illinois and Western Illinois moved their women's sports into the Mid-Continent when their former women's sports home, the Gateway Conference, merged into the Missouri Valley Conference. A year later, the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee joined the Mid-Continent.
Horizon and ECC transitions
In 1994, charter members Cleveland State University, the University of Illinois at Chicago, and the University of Wisconsin–Green Bay, as well as newer members Wisconsin–Milwaukee, Northern Illinois, and Wright State left the conference to join the Midwestern Collegiate Conference, now known as the Horizon League.
In response, the Mid-Continent absorbed Central Connecticut State University, Chicago State University, the University at Buffalo, Troy State University (now Troy University), and Northeastern Illinois University from the collapsed East Coast Conference. None of these institutions remain in the league.
Missouri-Kansas City, formerly an independent, also joined the Mid-Continent Conference in 1994.
Eastern Illinois moved to the Ohio Valley Conference in 1996, reducing membership to nine programs. Troy State departed for the Trans America Athletic Conference while Central Connecticut went to the Northeast Conference in 1997. Buffalo joined the MAC in 1998 while Northeastern Illinois ceased intercollegiate athletics at that time. Oral Roberts University and Southern Utah University replaced the former pair while Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) and Oakland University moved into the latter duo's spots a year later.
Youngstown State switched to the Horizon League in 2001, and was replaced by Centenary College in 2003. Chicago State University announced in the spring of 2006 that it would withdraw from the conference to compete as an independent starting in the 2006-07 school year. Charter member Valparaiso University then moved to the Horizon in 2007.
At the Mid-Continent Conference annual Presidents Council meeting in 2006, conference expansion was discussed at length, and Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW), North Dakota State, and South Dakota State were approved for site visits. On August 30, 2006, IPFW accepted an invitation to join the Mid-Continent Conference as a full member starting July 1, 2007. The following day, North Dakota State and South Dakota State also accepted invitations to join the conference.
The Summit League has continued its renewed expansion push with the admission of the University of South Dakota. The Coyotes began conference play in the 2011–12 academic year and become eligible for all championships the following season. Centenary College subsequently announced that it would leave the Summit League following the 2010–2011 campaign.
The University of North Dakota had also been openly rumored to have been courted by the Summit League, but controversy over the Fighting Sioux nickname in all likelihood prevented UND's admission. Expectations that UND would join the Summit League came to an end on November 1, 2010, when North Dakota instead accepted an invitation to join the Big Sky Conference. The University of South Dakota entered into very brief negotiations to join the Big Sky as well, rather than continuing their plans to join the Summit. However, South Dakota chose instead to remain with the more compact Summit League (along with other Dakota schools, NDSU and SDSU). As the University of Nebraska Omaha began the transition to Division I athletics in all sports, it joined the Summit League on July 1, 2012. With the departures of Centenary to Division III at the end of the 2010-11 athletic year, and Southern Utah and Oral Roberts for other Division I conferences at the end of the 2011-12 athletic year, the Summit League continued with nine institutions, all within the Midwest geographical region.
The conference unveiled the University of Denver (DU) as its 10th member on November 27, 2012, and the Pioneers joined in July 2013. While Denver is slightly outside The Summit's current Midwestern base, travel issues for the other members were seemingly minimized by the city's status as a major air hub. Then, with Denver among the eight of ten WAC members switching to other conferences, that league was searching for new members, and on February 7, 2013, it was announced that UMKC would be one of six schools joining the WAC for the 2013-14 season, dropping the Summit league back to nine member schools. On May 7, 2013, membership fell to eight schools, when Oakland announced that it was joining the Horizon League. With Oakland's move, eight of the nine then-current Horizon League programs were former Summit League members (the Horizon has since added a second member that was never in The Summit League, Northern Kentucky).
In December, 2013, The Summit League office announced that Oral Roberts University was returning to the conference in all sports, effective July 1, 2014.
Full members Full members (non-football) Associate member (baseball, men's soccer, softball, or swimming and diving)
- Southwest Missouri State adopted its current name of Missouri State University in 2005.
- The two former members that are part of the University of Wisconsin System, namely UW–Green Bay and UW–Milwaukee, now brand themselves for athletic purposes as "Green Bay" and "Milwaukee".
- Troy State adopted its current name of Troy University in 2004.
The Summit League sponsors championship competition in nine men's and ten women's NCAA sanctioned sports. Former full member Eastern Illinois is an associate member for men's and women's swimming and diving and men's soccer.
|Swimming and diving||6||7|
|Track and field (indoor)||6||8|
|Track and field (outdoor)||6||8|
Men's sponsored sports by school
Track & Field
Track & Field
|Denver|| || || || || || || || || || |
|Fort Wayne|| || || || || || || || || || |
|IUPUI|| || || || || || || || || || |
|North Dakota State|| || || || || || || || || || |
|Omaha|| || || || || || || || || || |
|Oral Roberts|| || || || || || || || || || |
|South Dakota|| || || || || || || || || || |
|South Dakota State|| || || || || || || || || || |
|Western Illinois|| || || || || || || || || || |
|Totals|| || || || || || || || || || |
- * = Associate member in soccer and swimming & diving, Eastern Illinois.
Men's varsity sports not sponsored by The Summit League which are played by member schools:
|North Dakota State||MVFC||—||—||—||—||Big 12|
|South Dakota State||MVFC||—||—||—||—||Big 12|
Women's sponsored sports by school
Women's varsity sports not sponsored by The Summit League which are played by member schools:
|Denver||—||Big 12||Big East Conference||RMISA|
|South Dakota State|| United Equestrian Conference &|
National Collegiate Equestrian Association
Men's basketball in the NCAA tournament
|1986||Cleveland State||14*||defeated Indiana|
defeated Saint Joseph's
lost to Navy
|1987||Southwest Missouri State||13||defeated Clemson|
lost to Kansas
|1988||Southwest Missouri State||13||lost to UNLV|
|1989||Southwest Missouri State||14||lost to Seton Hall|
|1990||Southwest Missouri State||9*||lost to North Carolina|
|Northern Iowa||14||defeated Missouri|
lost to Minnesota
|1991||Green Bay||12||lost to Michigan State|
|Northern Illinois||13*||lost to St. John's|
|1992||Eastern Illinois||15||lost to Indiana|
|1993||Wright State||16||lost to Indiana|
|1994||Green Bay||12||defeated California|
lost to Syracuse
|1996||Valparaiso||14||lost to Arizona|
|1997||Valparaiso||12||lost to Boston College|
|1998||Valparaiso||13||defeated Ole Miss|
defeated Florida State
lost to Rhode Island
|1999||Valparaiso||15||lost to Maryland|
|2000||Valparaiso||16||lost to Michigan State|
|2001||Southern Utah||14||lost to Boston College|
|2002||Valparaiso||13||lost to Kentucky|
|2003||IUPUI||16||lost to Kentucky|
|2004||Valparaiso||15||lost to Gonzaga|
|2005||Oakland||16||defeated Alabama A&M**|
Lost to North Carolina
|2006||Oral Roberts||16||lost to Memphis|
|2007||Oral Roberts||14||lost to Washington State|
|2008||Oral Roberts||13||lost to Pittsburgh|
|2009||North Dakota State||14||lost to Kansas|
|2010||Oakland||14||lost to Pittsburgh|
|2011||Oakland||13||lost to Texas|
|2012||South Dakota State||14||lost to Baylor|
|2013||South Dakota State||13||lost to Michigan|
|2014||North Dakota State||12|| defeated Oklahoma |
lost to San Diego State
|2015||North Dakota State||15||lost to Gonzaga|
* At-large bid
** Opening round game
|School||Soccer stadium||Capacity||Basketball arena||Capacity||Baseball field||Capacity||Softball field||Capacity|
|Denver||CIBER Field at the University of Denver Soccer Stadium||2,000||Magness Arena||7,200||Non-baseball school||Non-softball school|
|IPFW||Hefner Soccer Complex||2,000||Hilliard Gates Sports Center||1,800*||Mastodon Field||200||IPFW Softball Field||500|
|IUPUI||Carroll Stadium||12,111||Fairgrounds Coliseum||8,200||Non-baseball school||IUPUI Softball Complex||500|
|North Dakota State||Dacotah Field||2,600||Bison Sports Arena||5,830||Newman Outdoor Field||4,600||Ellig Sports Complex||450|
|Omaha||Al F. Caniglia Field||3,097||Baxter Arena||7,898||Ballpark at Boys Town||N/A|| Westside Field
|Oral Roberts||Case Soccer Complex||1,000||Mabee Center||10,575||J. L. Johnson Stadium||2,418||Non-softball school|
|South Dakota||USD Soccer Field||N/A||DakotaDome||10,000||Non-baseball school||Nygard Field||500|
|South Dakota State||Fishback Soccer Park||1,500||Frost Arena||6,500||Erv Huether Field||600||Jackrabbit Softball Stadium||200|
|Western Illinois||MacKenzie Alumni Field||1,000||Western Hall||5,139||Alfred D. Boyer Stadium||500|| Mary Ellen McKee
|Eastern Illinois||Lakeside Soccer Field||1,000||Soccer-only member|
- IPFW has one game scheduled at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum for the 2014-2015 season.
- List of The Summit League champions
- The Summit League Men's Basketball Tournament
- The Summit League Women's Basketball Tournament
- The Summit League Baseball Tournament
- Association of Mid-Continent Universities football
- "Valpo to join Conference". Green Bay, Wisconsin: The Rochester Sentinel. 19 June 1982. Retrieved 13 July 2013.
- Eastern Illinois men's soccer joins Summit League , The NCAA News, March 26, 2010
- "UMKC Heading to the Western Athletic Conference - UMKC Athletics". Umkckangaroos.com. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
- "Oakland University to Join". Horizon League. May 7, 2013. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
- The Spectrum - www.thespectrum.com
- Press Release. IPFW accepts invitation to join Mid-Continent Conference, Mid-Continent Conference, August 30, 2006.
- Press Release. North Dakota State University accepts invitation to join Mid-Continent Conference, Mid-Continent Conference, August 31, 2006.
- Press Release. South Dakota State University accepts invitation to join Mid-Continent Conference, Mid-Continent Conference, August 31, 2006.
- "University of South Dakota Official Athletic Site - University of South Dakota". Usdcoyotes.com. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
- "Centenary to leave Summit League". July 7, 2009. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
- "North Dakota, Southern Utah joining Big Sky Conference - ESPN". Sports.espn.go.com. November 1, 2010. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
- "Denver Becomes The Summit League's Newest Member" (Press release). The Summit League. November 27, 2012. Retrieved November 27, 2012.
- "The Summit League". The Summit League. June 27, 2013. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
- MSU was known as Southwest Missouri State University until 2005.
- Caniglia Field
- Baxter Arena
- "Omaha 2013-14 Division I Softball". National Collegiate Athletic Association. Retrieved February 6, 2015.
- "South Dakota 2013-14 Division I Softball". National Collegiate Athletic Association. Retrieved February 6, 2015.