Augustana not invited as new member to Summit League

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - The Summit League has opted not to invite Augustana University as a new member.

“The Presidents Council had a robust discussion on membership and opted not to invite any additional members at this time. We will continue to stay focused and strategic as we look toward the future of the League," said Summit League Commissioner Tom Douple.

Augustana says while they are disappointed with the decision they remain committed to its Viking Bold: The Journey to 2030 10-year strategic plan. The university also has a goal to become Division I.

"While we are disappointed in The Summit League’s decision at this time, we recognize the ever-evolving and shifting landscape within intercollegiate athletics. Just as we have grown as a university and athletics department over the past 10 years, we look forward to even more growth this decade," the university said in a statement on Tuesday.

Augustana had applied for membership and been conducting virtual presentations and campus visits with Summit officials this month.

St. Thomas University, a Division Three program out of the Twins Cities, was offered membership into the Summit League in October of 2019. They are currently awaiting an NCAA decision on their appeal to make a transition from Division Three to Division One, something that has never happened before.

Per NCAA rules, a program can not transition up to Division One without having a conference membership in hand.