LUBBOCK, Texas (July 28, 2015) – A new era of Lubbock Christian University athletics will get underway this school term, as LCU will compete in their first season as full members of NCAA Division II. The NCAA approved Lubbock Christian University as their newest member of Division II, completing their transition and membership process. Their membership becomes effective on Sept. 1 and all 11 athletic programs are eligible for Heartland Conference and NCAA postseason play.
LCU completed a successful three-year membership process, which began in 2012-2013 school term with a pair of Candidacy Years followed by a Provisional Year. The 2012-2013 school term was LCU’s final season in the NAIA and it was their last season of postseason play. Lubbock Christian spent the past two seasons competing as transitional members in the Heartland Conference and they join Oklahoma Christian as full members this upcoming season.
The Chaparrals and Lady Chaparrals had one of the most successful transition periods over the last two seasons. LCU was not eligible for postseason play, but they were eligible to be involved in the Heartland Conference standings. Of their seven team sports, LCU had all but one team finish in the top three in the the standings over the combined prior two seasons (13 out of 14 team-sport programs). LCU finished in either sole possession or a share of first place six times. Women’s basketball and softball finished atop the standings in each of the past two seasons. Men’s soccer and baseball finished in first place in 2013-2014.
The first official regular season event as full NCAA Division II members is scheduled for Sept. 3, with women’s soccer hosting University of the Southwest (N.M.). Lubbock Christian began athletics as a four-year school in 1970-1971 as a member of the NAIA and went on to claim 14 national championships over a 43-year span. Men’s Cross Country claimed eight consecutive titles during a dynasty from 1990-1997 and also used their running prowess on the track to claim a pair of indoor titles (1991, 1995) and an outdoor title in 1994. Baseball, with over 1,900 wins, produced magical runs in 1983 and 2009 for a pair of titles and also enjoyed 10 trips to the NAIA World Series. Softball, one of LCU’s most recently added programs, claimed a NAIA Championship in 2008 during a Cinderella inaugural season.