FROM CBD NEWS SOURCE
DENVER—The Western Athletic Conference announced today that an invitation for affiliate membership has been issued to and accepted by North Dakota to join the conference in baseball starting with the 2013-14 academic year.
“We are pleased to announce the addition of North Dakota to our baseball league,” said WAC Interim Commissioner Jeff Hurd. “UND will be a great fit with the other baseball teams in the conference and we believe North Dakota will play a viable role in advancing WAC baseball into the future.”
North Dakota baseball can be traced back to 1889. In 1958, the team officially became part of the Division II North Central Conference until 2009, when the team began its classification to Division I. UND played as an independent in 2009 before joining the Great West Conference in 2010, where it is currently a member.
“We are honored to have been invited to join the Western Athletic Conference in baseball,” UND Director of Athletics Brian Faison said. “This conference affiliation will provide our baseball program with an exciting home for the future.”
North Dakota is coached by Jeff Dodson who officially became the first Division I baseball coach in the history of the University when he was hired on June 20, 2008. He took over a program that spent the previous 50 seasons playing at the Division II level in the NCC. The 2013 season will be his fifth as the program has now wrapped up its transition to Division I baseball.
“I’m thrilled to be going into a league that has a name as prestigious as the WAC,” said UND Head Baseball Coach Jeff Dodson. “This is a great day for UND Baseball.”
The addition will give the WAC a total of 10 teams for baseball as UND will join CSU Bakersfield, Chicago State, Grand Canyon, New Mexico State, Northern Colorado, Sacramento State, Seattle U, Texas-Pan American and Utah Valley in 2014.