Maranatha To Withdraw From Northern Athletics Conference
Maranatha Baptist Bible College has formally announced that it will withdraw from the Northern Athletics Conference at the conclusion of the 2012-13 academic year. The NAC Council of Chief Executive Officers accepted the request earlier this week.
"In the six-year history of the NAC, Maranatha has struggled to be consistently competitive among the NAC institutions despite our efforts to improve the strength of our athletic programs," Maranatha Director of Athletics Rob Thompson stated.
Maranatha, located in Watertown, Wis., is a charter member of the NAC, which was formed in the fall of 2006 as a merger of the former Lake Michigan Conference and Northern Illinois-Iowa Conference. The Crusaders were also charter members of the LMC which began competition in 1974.
"God has been very good to us and we are thankful that He has allowed us to do much with sometimes very limited resources," stated Maranatha President, Marty Marriott, Ph.D. "This is a tribute to both the caliber of our coaches and character of our athletes. Maranatha's program is stronger today due to our experiences in the Northern Athletic Conference and the NCAA. We will look forward to continued athletic relationships and competition with select NAC member institutions in nonconference events as we continue to move forward."
Maranatha will continue to offer 11 intercollegiate athletic programs at the NCAA Division III level as an independent member, while also maintaining its dual membership of the National Christian College Athletic Association.
Additionally, during the upcoming academic year, Maranatha will explore the options of aligning with another NCAA III conference in the geographical area.
"Maranatha is committed to maintaining a strong intercollegiate program," said Thompson.
Since the league's inception, Maranatha has been honored with the NAC Sportsmanship Award seven times -- three men's awards and four-straight women's awards.
"We would like to thank Maranatha Baptist Bible College for the values of sportsmanship and positive character displayed by their student-athletes, coaches and community as members of the NAC," said NAC Commissioner G. Steven Larson, Ph.D. "We wish them the best with their intercollegiate athletics programs as they move forward."
The Northern Athletics Conference, a NCAA Division III member conference, consists of 13 private colleges and universities from the shared-border states of Illinois and Wisconsin and sponsors championships in 18 sports. Current members include: Alverno College, Aurora University, Benedictine University, Concordia University Chicago, Concordia University Wisconsin, Dominican University, Edgewood College, Lakeland College, Maranatha Baptist Bible College, Marian University, Milwaukee School of Engineering, Rockford College and Wisconsin Lutheran College.