Elon Becomes 5th School To Leave Southern Conference; UTC Among 7 Left In SoCon

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Elon University will leave the Southern Conference and join the Colonial Athletic Association for the 2014-15 academic year. The change in athletics conference affiliation was approved by the Elon Board of Trustees and announced Thursday by President Leo M. Lambert.

College of Charleston announced earlier it was joining CAA. Georgia Southern and Appalachian State are heading for the Sun Belt Conference. Davidson is leaving for the Atlantic 10 Conference.

UTC remains in the Southern Conference with Western Carolina, UNC Greensboro, Citadel, Furman, Wofford and Samford.

"In a time of great change in the collegiate athletics landscape, the Colonial Athletic Association offers a great match with our strategic plans for Elon's future," Lambert said. "The CAA will allow our student-athletes to compete with peers at many excellent universities on the Eastern seaboard. We will have the opportunity to continue competition with fine schools in the Carolinas and Virginia while raising Elon's profile in the large metropolitan areas of the mid-Atlantic and Northeast – areas where many of our students, alumni and prospective students call home."

Wes Elingburg, chair of Elon's Board of Trustees, called the conference change historic. "Elon has a proud history of athletics success and we are excited to share Elon's story with new friends in the Colonial Athletic Association," Elingburg said. "This is an important next step in confirming Elon's position as a university of national prominence."

Officials said, "Elon will make the move to the CAA after more than a decade of success on the field and in the classroom in the Southern Conference. Elon has won 18 Southern Conference regular-season and tournament titles. Twelve Phoenix student-athletes have earned Southern Conference Player of the Year recognition, while Elon head coaches have earned 19 Southern Conference Coach of the Year honors. Nationally, 25 Elon student-athletes have received All-American honors and 25 student-athletes have earned Academic All-American recognition. Since joining the Southern Conference, 17 Elon teams and individuals have made NCAA postseason appearances, while teams and individuals have appeared in national rankings more than 20 times."

"The Colonial Athletic Association will provide the next great challenge in the growth of Elon athletics," said Dave Blank, director of athletics. "By emphasizing continuous improvement with our student-athletes and coaches, Elon has risen to a position of strength in SoCon competition. We are equally proud of the leadership Elon has provided in academic excellence in the conference. The CAA is a great fit at an exciting time in sports at Elon."

Blank said Elon will look to continue existing athletics rivalries and build new ones, especially with CAA members in the Carolinas and Virginia. "We look forward to continuing competition with former SoCon member College of Charleston and with UNC-Wilmington, and to expanding our schedules with competition against James Madison, Richmond and William & Mary, as well as with schools further north."

Colonial Athletic Association Commissioner Tom Yeager said the CAA is thrilled Elon has accepted the offer of membership.

"We have been selectively searching for highly respected institutions that share a common vision of institutional excellence and a commitment to the success of the young men and women participating in our athletic programs," Yeager said. "Elon fits our model and will immediately become a valuable conference partner helping to elevate each individual institution.”


Tennessee, BYU Announce Series In 2019 And 2023

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. --  The University of Tennessee football Vols announced   Thursday   the dates for a future home-and-home series with BYU. The two programs are set to meet in 2019 and 2023. The first-ever game between the Vols and Cougars is slated for  Sept. 7, 2019 , at Neyland Stadium in Knoxville. That game rounds out UT's 2019 non-conference ... (click for more)

Mocs Softball Set To Host Frost Classic This Weekend

 The Chattanooga Mocs softball team is ready to hold their annual Frost Classic tournament at Frost Stadium this weekend with games running from Friday through Sunday. Aside UTC, Fairleigh Dickinson, Northwestern State, Western Michigan, UT Martin and Saint Louis will also be competing. The Mocs (3-6) are scheduled to play five games in three days, all at Frost Stadium, ... (click for more)

St. Elmo Woman, 45, Dies At County Workhouse On Wednesday Night; Investigation Underway

An inmate died at the county workhouse at Silverdale on Wednesday night, and an investigation is underway.   She was identified as  Dana Shunice Palmer, 45, of St. Elmo.   Ms. Palmer was booked into the Hamilton County Jail from the Chattanooga Police Department on Feb. 14 on a public Intoxication charge. She was transferred from the jail to CoreCivic ... (click for more)

Shannon Whitfield Raising Rates At Money-Losing Walker County Landfill; Moratorium Placed On Fracking, Deep Well Drilling, Tiny Homes

New Walker County Sole Commissioner Shannon Whitfield is raising rates at the money-losing Walker County Landfill. The higher charges go into effect on March 1. Mr. Whitfield, during his campaign, said the landfill had been losing about $500,000 per year for many years. He said other area landfills were making a profit, but Walker County was having to subsidize its landfill. ... (click for more)

CVB Should Share Financials With The Home Folks

The recent debate over the Convention and Visitor's Bureau's funding and budget has gotten ugly. A Hamilton County commissioner has asked questions and made comments about the CVB. The director of the CVB has organized a campaign to dismiss the commissioner's questions and comments. The children on the playground are choosing sides and nothing useful seems to be happening. It's ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Ed Chief ‘Embarrassed’

At the start of the school year in September, Tennessee’s Commissioner of Education Dr. Candice McQueen held an “educational summit” with state legislators from embattled Hamilton County. The entire “summit” took a prescribed 90 minutes and was such a dog-and-pony show her strongest statement was, "Create your plan around the right vision, have some metrics and align to the right ... (click for more)