May 29, 2013

LE MOYNE COLLEGE ANNOUNCES ADDITION OF INDOOR AND OUTDOOR TRACK AS VARSITY PROGRAMS

Syracuse, N.Y. – Le Moyne College Assistant Vice President and Director of Athletics Matt Bassett announced on Wednesday the addition of men’s and women’s indoor and outdoor track as varsity sports, with competition to begin in the 2014-15 academic year. The four programs will create participation opportunities for approximately 30 new student-athletes and are the first new programs at the College since the addition of women’s golf in the 2009-10 academic year.

"We would not have considered this move, at this time, without having the leadership of Coach Scott Love on our campus,” said Bassett. “While we have enjoyed our share of success over the years in our cross country programs, it is clear that we needed to add these programs to assist our current student-athletes, and our future recruits, with the opportunity to pursue a premier Division II experience, which includes NCAA opportunities in all three seasons.”

Second-year men’s and women’s cross country coach Scott Love will serve as the head coach of the four track programs, as well as remaining in charge of the cross country programs. During his eight-year tenure at Nazareth College prior to coming to Le Moyne, Love guided 29 women’s indoor track student-athletes to all-Empire 8 honors and coached two Rookies of the Year and one Sportswoman of the Year, while guiding 27 women’s outdoor track student-athletes to all-Empire 8 accolades and coaching two Sportswomen of the Year. On the men’s side, Love guided 38 men’s indoor track student-athletes to all-Empire 8 honors and coached three Track Athletes of the Meet, one Rookie of the Year and one Sportsman of the Year, while guiding 35 men’s outdoor track student-athletes to all-Empire 8 accolades and coaching three Track Athletes of the Meet and two Rookies of the Year.

“I am very pleased to have a track program added,” said Love. “The team is very excited because we are now able to recruit, train, and compete on a level playing field with other schools in our conference and in Division II. The future is very bright.”

With the addition of the four track programs, the College now sponsors 21 NCAA Division II teams and offers participation opportunities for over 340 students. There are presently 139 active NCAA Division II institutions that sponsor men’s indoor track and field, 162 that sponsor women’s indoor track and field, 180 that sponsor men’s outdoor track and field, and 201 that sponsor women’s outdoor track and field.

The Northeast-10 Conference has a long history of success in indoor and outdoor track, which includes New Haven’s Shannon Gagne being named the 2011 NCAA Division II Indoor Track Athlete of the Year after winning three national championships and the 2011 NCAA Division II Outdoor Track Athlete of the Year after claiming two national championships, while two men’s student-athletes claimed national championships at the 2012 indoor championships. The conference has 10 institutions that currently sponsor men’s and women’s indoor and outdoor track, while Southern New Hampshire University is adding a women’s outdoor track program in the 2015-16 academic year. The institutions already with track programs are Adelphi, American International, Assumption, Bentley, Franklin Pierce, Merrimack, New Haven, Saint Rose, Southern Connecticut State and Stonehill.

The Northeast-10 has traditionally provided significant opportunities for conference members to access NCAA championships. The NE-10 had 42 student-athletes selected to compete at the NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field Championships in Birmingham, Alabama in March. There were 23 men’s competitors from six institutions, while there were 19 women’s competitors from five institutions. The conference had 44 student-athletes selected to compete at last week’s NCAA Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Pueblo, Colorado. On the men’s side, 23 student-athletes from six institutions competed, while 21 student-athletes from seven institutions competed on the women’s side.