Football divisions remain, changes to other sports approved at SBC 2022 spring meetings
Sun Belt conference administrators and coaches wrapped up four days of spring meetings Friday at the Hilton Sandestin Beach in Miramar Beach, Fla. basketball coaches from each of Sun Belt’s 14 member institutions. Representatives from James Madison, Old Dominion, Marshall and Southern Miss, who officially join the conference July 1, attended the meetings.
Attendees included people from the NCAA Division I Transformation Committee, the NCAA National Office, the College Football Playoffs, the Cure Bowl, the Lending Tree Bowl, the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, the Cotton Bowl Athletic Association and Van Wagner, as well as several sponsorship partners.
Awards were presented to five head basketball coaches for significant wins during the 2021-22 season. In women’s basketball, App State’s Angel Elderkin (100th career win), Zenarae Antoine of Texas State (150th career win) and Chanda Rigby of Troy University (400th career win). In men’s basketball, South Alabama’s Richie Riley (100th career win) and Troy University’s Scott Cross (250th career win).
Recommendations from the spring meetings will be reviewed by Sun Belt Presidents and Chancellors at a meeting the first week of June. An announcement with additional information will take place once this meeting is over.
The group heard a presentation from Julie Cromer, DA at Ohio University, Co-Chair of the Transformation Committee and Jenn Fraser, NCAA Division I General Manager, on the work of the Transformation Committee. They provided an update and shared some concepts that the transformation committee is evaluating. Mark Cunningham, Sun Belt’s antitrust lawyer, was also present.
The DAs reaffirmed their commitment to divisional programming in football and that the Sun Belt Football Championship game will be the West Division Champion vs. the East Division Champion. They also approved a recommendation from the volleyball coaches to allow all 14 teams to participate in the November Women’s Volleyball Championship in Foley, AL. The DAs are committed to improving the results of men’s and women’s basketball. They had an in-depth discussion on all the factors that need to be considered and identified a process to position Sun Belt men’s and women’s basketball for greater success. AD approved instant replay for baseball and softball. They also increased the number of broadcasts required by the conference for baseball and softball. The DAs noted the success of Sun Belt baseball and softball and determined that a strategic plan to ensure continued excellence should be developed for both sports. Heading into the 2022 season, its first as a 14-member football conference, the Sun Belt continues to lead the FBS with a .649 winning percentage. The Sun Belt concludes its sports season this week with the Conference Baseball Championship at Riverwalk Stadium in Montgomery, AL.
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