Mountain East Conference
The Mountain East Conference (MEC) is a collegiate athletic conference that competes in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II level and officially began competition on September 1, 2013. It consists of 12 schools, mostly in West Virginia with other charter members in Ohio and Virginia.
|Mountain East Conference|
|Members||12 (10 starting 2019-2020)|
|Region||West Virginia, Virginia, and Ohio|
|Headquarters||Bridgeport, West Virginia|
|Commissioner||Reid Amos (since 2012)|
|Mountain East Conference|
|Location of MEC members: current, future, and departing|
The conference is an offshoot of the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WVIAC), another Division II conference that had operated primarily in West Virginia since 1924. In June 2012, the nine football-playing schools in that conference announced plans to break away and form a new all-sports conference. The schools that made the initial announcement were the University of Charleston, Concord University, Fairmont State University, Glenville State College, Seton Hill University, Shepherd University, West Liberty University, West Virginia State University, and West Virginia Wesleyan College. All of these schools were in West Virginia, except for Seton Hill, located in Pennsylvania. According to regional media, the split was "supposedly rooted in different philosophies of progressivism", and also was partially driven by a desire to expand the new conference's footprint outside West Virginia. The divisions in the WVIAC were also rooted in the split between public and private schools, although the departing schools included institutions of both types.
At the time of the original announcement, the nine schools planned to expand to at least 12 members. Before the official launch of the conference on August 20, 2012, the MEC sought to add the WVIAC's other Pennsylvania member, the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown; however, both Seton Hill and Pittsburgh–Johnstown chose to join the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference. The MEC filled out its charter membership with another West Virginia school, Wheeling Jesuit University; two Ohio schools, Notre Dame College and Urbana University; and the University of Virginia's College at Wise (UVa–Wise), located in Southwest Virginia. Wheeling Jesuit was a WVIAC member that had been left out of the original WVIAC split. Urbana and UVa–Wise were members of the Great Midwest Athletic Conference in 2012–13, while Notre Dame was a Division II independent that had housed five of its 22 sports in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. UVa–Wise, which had previously been turned down for WVIAC membership, was transitioning from the NAIA and did not officially become an active D-II member until 2015-16; all of the other charter members were already full D-II members.
At its launch, the MEC had 11 football members, with Wheeling Jesuit being the only non-football school. On February 15, 2013, the NCAA accepted the MEC as its 25th D2 conference. The 2015–16 school year was the first in which MEC teams were eligible for automatic bids to NCAA Division II championships; before then, they were eligible only for at-large bids.
|University of Charleston||Charleston, West Virginia||1888||1,350||Golden Eagles||2013|
|Concord University||Athens, West Virginia||1872||2,850||Mountain Lions||2013|
|Fairmont State University||Fairmont, West Virginia||1865||4,600||Falcons||2013|
|Glenville State College||Glenville, West Virginia||1872||2,000||Pioneers||2013|
|Notre Dame College||South Euclid, Ohio||1922||2,200||Falcons||2013|
|Shepherd University||Shepherdstown, West Virginia||1871||4,400||Rams||2013|
|Urbana University||Urbana, Ohio||1850||1,500||Blue Knights||2013|
|University of Virginia's College at Wise||Wise, Virginia||1954||2,000||Cavaliers||2013|
|West Liberty University||West Liberty, West Virginia||1837||2,500||Hilltoppers||2013|
|West Virginia State University||Institute, West Virginia||1891||3,100||Yellow Jackets||2013|
|West Virginia Wesleyan College||Buckhannon, West Virginia||1890||1,452||Bobcats||2013|
|Wheeling Jesuit University||Wheeling, West Virginia||1954||1,600||Cardinals||2013|
- UVA–Wise will join the South Atlantic Conference starting in the 2019–20 school year.
- Shepherd will join the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference starting in the 2019–20 school year.
|Davis & Elkins College||Elkins, West Virginia||1904||810||Senators||2019|
|Frostburg State University||Frostburg, Maryland||1898||5,215||Bobcats||2019|
On July 5, 2018, the Mountain East Conference announced that Frostburg State University has accepted an offer of membership beginning with the 2019-20 academic year. Full membership will be contingent upon Frostburg State achieving active membership status in NCAA Division II. On August 30, 2018, the MEC announced two additional new members effective in 2019–20. Davis & Elkins College will become a full member, and the University of North Carolina at Pembroke will join in five sports. UNC Pembroke will initially begin MEC competition in men's and women's indoor track & field, women's swimming & diving, and wrestling in 2019, with football to follow in 2020.
Future associate memberEdit
|Institution||Location||Founded||Enrollment||Nickname||Colors||Primary Conference||MEC Sports||Joining|
|University of North Carolina at Pembroke||Pembroke, North Carolina||1887||5,827||Braves||Peach Belt||Football
Indoor track & field (M&W)
Swimming & diving (W)
|2019 (other sports)|
Full member (all sports) Full member (non-football) Associate member (football-only) Associate member (sport)
The MEC sponsored 16 sports in all, eight each for men and women, at its formation. Women's lacrosse became the 17th conference sport for the 2014–15 school year (2015 season). Men's and women's swimming and diving were added as the 18th and 19th conference sports for 2017–18, with the MEC and Great Midwest Athletic Conference (G-MAC) forming a swimming and diving alliance that conducts a joint conference championship meet. The MEC will add men's and women's indoor track & field and wrestling to its sports roster in 2019–20.
|A divisional format is used for baseball and softball.|
|Swimming & Diving|
|Track & Field Outdoor|
Men's sponsored sports by schoolEdit
|West Virginia State||5|
|West Virginia Wesleyan||9|
|Davis & Elkins||8|
- Wheeling Jesuit will add football in 2019.
Women's sponsored sports by schoolEdit
|West Virginia State||5|
|West Virginia Wesleyan||10|
|Davis & Elkins||9|
Other sponsored sports by schoolEdit
Future members Davis & Elkins and Frostburg State in gray.
|Davis & Elkins||G-MAC||G-MAC||IND||G-MAC|
|West Virginia Wesleyan||IND||IND|
- To become an official Mountain East sport in 2019–20.
- Division I sport.
- Although gymnastics is an NCAA sport, acrobatics & tumbling fall outside the scope of NCAA competition.
- Frostburg State men's lacrosse will join the East Coast Conference for 2019–20 and beyond.
- Frostburg State field hockey will compete as an independent for at least 2019–20.
- "A Break Up For WVIAC". Charleston, WV: West Virginia Metro News. June 19, 2012. Retrieved August 21, 2012.
- Stevens, Rich (June 25, 2012). "More than meets eye in breakup of WVIAC". Charleston Daily Mail. Charleston, WV. p. 1. Archived from the original on January 2, 2013. Retrieved August 21, 2012.
- Rine, Shawn (August 20, 2012). "Cards, Toppers Set To Jump Into New League". The Intelligencer & Wheeling News Register. Wheeling, WV. Retrieved August 21, 2012.
- Stevens, Rich (June 25, 2012). "More than meets eye in breakup of WVIAC". Charleston Daily Mail. Charleston, WV. p. 2. Retrieved August 21, 2012.
- "UVa–Wise Accepts Charter Membership in Mountain East Conference". Hazard, KY: WYMT-TV. August 20, 2012. Retrieved August 21, 2012.
- "NCAA Adds Mountain East Conference As Newest DIvision II League" (Press release). Mountain East Conference. February 15, 2013.
- "UVa-Wise to Join South Atlantic Conference in 2019-20". The University of Virginia's College at Wise.
- "Shepherd likely headed to new conference - News, Sports, Jobs - Journal News". www.journal-news.net.
- "Mountain East Conference to welcome Davis & Elkins as full member, UNC Pembroke as associate member". Charleston Gazette-Mail. August 30, 2018. Retrieved September 15, 2018.
- "Frostburg State Set To Join Mountain East Conference" (Press release). Bridgeport, West Virginia: Mountain East Conference. July 5, 2018. Retrieved July 5, 2018.
- "Davis & Elkins To Join MEC; UNC Pembroke To Be Associate Member" (Press release). Bridgeport, West Virginia: Mountain East Conference. August 30, 2018. Retrieved September 16, 2018.
- "Great Midwest, Mountain East Form 2018 Conference Championship Event" (Press release). Great Midwest Athletic Conference. September 14, 2017. Retrieved July 7, 2018.
- "Wheeling Jesuit University to Launch Football Program" (Press release). Wheeling Jesuit Cardinals. Retrieved June 20, 2017.
- "ECC Adds Frostburg State University as Men's Lacrosse Associate Members". Frostburg State University Athletics (Press release). West Babylon, New York: East Coast Conference. December 7, 2018. Retrieved April 25, 2019.