COLLEGE: Sul Ross approved for NCAA Division II

ALPINE Sul Ross State will soon be making the jump to NCAA Division II.

On Thursday, the university’s athletic department said in a press release that it received word from the NCAA that they have been approved for Division II athletic competition.

The university will enter a three-year provisional period that will include one more academic year in Division III.

Sul Ross State will join Division II competition as part of the Lone Star Conference in the fall of 2024 and at the end of year three, as long as all membership criteria have been met, will become full members of Division II.

“Our primary goal is to improve enrollment and retention by creating an unforgettable student experience,” Sul Ross President Carlos Hernandez said in the press release. “We know that athletic competition is a driver in the choice students make about higher education.”

Athletic Director Amanda Workman completed the application in January 2023, calling the student-athlete experience at SRSU the rationale for exploring the change.

“We’ll be attracting more students who will be able to continue to participate in sports after high school, and there will be a value add at Sul Ross State,” Workman said in the release. “It makes us more competitive on the field and we believe it will increase enrollment and augment retention efforts. Ultimately, our goal is to have all student-athletes graduate with a degree from SRSU.”

The press release stated that these changes will allow SRSU to award athletic scholarships, increase regional exposure and improve the travel schedule, which will improve the academic experience for student-athletes.

Sul Ross State currently competes in the Division III American Southwest Conference.

The university was a member of the Lone Star Conference from 1950-1976, when it joined the Texas Intercollegiate Athletic Association.

Sul Ross left the TIAA for the ASC in 1996.

SRSU currently competes in the DIII American Southwest Conference and has been invited to join the DII Lone Star Conference. SRSU was a member of the LSC from 1950-1976, when the university joined the Texas Intercollegiate Athletic Association. The university left the TIAA for the ASC in 1996.