|Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association|
|Members||9 + 1 affiliate|
|Region||Midwestern United States|
The Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) is an athletic conference that competes in the NCAA's Division III. The nine teams in the conference are all located in the states of Michigan and Indiana. The Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association was established on March 24, 1888, making it the oldest college athletic conference in the United States.The current members of the MIAA include Adrian College, Albion College, Alma College, Calvin University, Hope College, Kalamazoo College, Olivet College, Saint Mary's College of Notre Dame, Indiana, and Trine University, formerly known as Tri-State University. Olivet and Albion are the only charter members remaining in the conference. Former members include such colleges as Michigan State University, previously Michigan Agricultural College, (1888–1907), Eastern Michigan University, previously Michigan State Normal College, (1892–1926), Hillsdale College (1888–1961), and Defiance College (1997–2000).
The members of the MIAA remained the same from 1961 until 1997 when Defiance College of Ohio and Saint Mary's College of Indiana were invited to join, the first time colleges from outside Michigan were admitted to the conference. Adrian, Albion, Alma, Calvin, Hope, Kalamazoo, Olivet and Saint Mary's have not been members of any other conference. In 2002, the league accepted Wisconsin Lutheran College as an associate member for the purpose of competing only in football. Wisconsin Lutheran College left the MIAA for another conference in 2007. The newest member of the MIAA was accepted in the 2004–05 season, Tri-State University. Tri-State University changed their name to Trine University in 2008.
The conference was established on March 24, 1888. Being the oldest conference in America, the conference has made some drastic changes involving the types of sports that the conference competes in. The number of sports with competition is 22 (11 men and 11 women sports). These sports include cross country, football, golf, basketball, tennis, swimming, baseball, volleyball, softball, indoor track and field, outdoor track and field, lacrosse, and soccer. Some past sports that are no longer in competition include bicycle racing, Indian club juggling, wrestling, archery, and field hockey.
The "Father of the MIAA," was James Heckman of Hillsdale. Heckman promoted the idea of a permanent league after several schools had sponsored successful track and field days from 1884 to 1887. The first delegates met in Jackson on March 17, 1888, to organize the MIAA. A week after the meeting delegates from Albion, Hillsdale, Michigan State and Olivet drew up the MIAA's first constitution.
The schools that were to be a part of the MIAA in 1888 had diverse enrollment numbers. The largest enrollment belonged to Eastern with 714. Albion was listed as 451, Hillsdale 450, Michigan State 314, Olivet 277, Adrian 150, Hope 148, Kalamazoo 143 and Alma with 95 students.Some of the enrollment figures included many students taking work on a high school level. This meant that athletic teams of those years included both high school and college students. A five or six-year career of athletic participation was not unusual at that time.
On May 31, June 1–2, 1888 the first MIAA track and field meet was held at East Lansing, not even three months after the original meeting. The events that were held included the 100- yard dash, 200-yard dash, 880- yard run, high jump, long jump, shot put, hammer throw and mile relay. Some other events that would not normally be at a track and field meet today, were lawn tennis, wrestling, Indian club swing, horizontal and parallel bar performing, bicycle racing, sparring, and tug-of-war. The teams that competed in this event were Hillsdale, Albion, Michigan State, and Olivet. Hillsdale was the first MIAA track champion.
The following year in 1889, the second annual MIAA Field Day was done. At this Field Day Albion and Olivet participated in an exhibition "football match." It was not until 1891 when the first official intercollegiate football game in the MIAA was played with Albion defeating Hillsdale 36–4. Football was not recognized until 1894 as an official league sport.
The following sports came into effect as follows: Baseball, the 440-yard dash, mile run, high hurdles and pole vault in 1889. Football was recognized as an official league sport in 1894. The two mile run and discus in 1912 and the javelin replaced the hammer throw in 1913. Basketball became a league sport in 1911. Cross country was introduced in 1922 while golf was in 1934. Wrestling was introduced in 1969, but then was dropped in 1981. Soccer in 1970 and swimming in 1971.
Contrary to what many would think that sports for women only started in 1978-79 there is evidence that it started much earlier than that. The first Albion college tennis tournament held six years after the league was formed was actually a co-ed event.In 1936, Albion invited all of the MIAA schools to a play day and convention which was the first attempt to organize a women's athletic program for the MIAA. 100 women from all of the colleges in the MIAA participated in events such as archery, tennis, volleyball, basketball, badminton, softball, and swimming. In 1941 the Athletic Federation of Michigan College Women (AFMCW) was established. It later became known as the Women's Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (WMIAA) in 1946.
In 1977 league presidents voted to allow post-season participation by member schools if they were so invited by the NCAA Division III Football Committee (Harburn 4). This ended a seventeen-year ban on post-season competition. Albion's 1977 team was the first team chosen to participate. Many teams during the ban did not have the chance to show off their skills as some teams were even ranked in the Top Ten nationally, because of the NCAA rule prohibiting more than two teams from the same region being selected (Harburn 4). Hillsdale College left the conference in 1960 because they accepted a bid to a postseason football bowl game and were subsequently suspended two years by the conference.
In 1978–79, the league combined into a single structure the administration of the men's and women's athletic programs of the member schools. This meant that women sports would be included.
The MIAA has had its share of many winning seasons, but there are some that may stick out more than others. For example, Kalamazoo College men's tennis has been a part of one that cannot be matched by any other college or university in America. They have won or shared every MIAA Finals championship since 1936, which is 72 consecutive titles (www.miaa.org accessed 5/2/10). The only times they had to share the title was with Hope College in 1962 and 2003. Some other notable championship streaks include Calvin's men cross country 33 years in a row (active); Calvin's women track & field 27 years in a row.
Since 1990, MIAA member colleges have won 18 National Division III championships. The first MIAA national championship was won by Kalamazoo in 1976 when it won the men's tennis championship (Renner 19). The Kalamazoo College Hornets would later win back-to-back championships in 1986 and 1987 (Renner 19) and again in 1991, 1992, and 1993. NCAA Division III history was made in 1991-92 when the MIAA claimed two national championships in basketball with Calvin winning the men's title and Alma with the women's.The league has had 82 individual NCAA national championship performances since 1978.
The league has had many coaches throughout its history. There are always some coaches that stand out from the rest. One coach that stands out from the rest is George Acker of Kalamazoo College. Acker was a Phys. Ed Professor and men's tennis coach for 35 years. His impressive resume includes coaching 7 NCAA Division III Championships and 35 MIAA Championships. An impressive 209-1 MIAA career dual-meet record and an overall 537–231 record (www.kzoo.edu/sports/ahof/sport.html accessed 10/15/08). Acker was the winningest coach in the MIAA. He is followed by John Patnott of Hope College, Tish Loveless (Kalamazoo College), Chester Barnard (Kalamazoo College), and Bob Kent also from Kalamazoo College.
Another such coach was Jare T. Klein of Olivet. As coach of the famed Olivet College Wrestling program, Olivet teams won 10 League Championships (including 9 straight) in 15 Seasons. His team's overall dual meet record during his 29-year coaching tenure was 569 - 119. It appears that Klein may have been a victim to his own success as the MIAA dropped wrestling as a league sport in 1984.
Of course a league will have many rivalries and the MIAA is no different. In a recent interview Jamie Zorbo, head football coach for Kalamazoo College, talked about the tradition of the MIAA and the rivalries. “It is a competitive league; all the teams that are competing have been for a long time and have a lot of history to play for.” “Great rivalries are made including Kalamazoo vs. Hope; Albion vs. Kalamazoo and the Calvin vs. Hope rivalry in basketball. These are just a few of them.” (Zorbo, Jamie. Personal Interview 15 October 2008).
The Calvin vs. Hope rivalry has actually made national news. ESPN recently identified the nation's greatest college basketball rivalries. Calvin–Hope rivalry tops the Division III and is ranked fourth in all college hoops. ESPN covered this game in 2005 and a “fan poll” was conducted after the game where 80% of the voters voted for Calvin-Hope as number one. It was also covered in July 2007 in an ESPN series (http://www.hope.edu/pr/athletics/therivalry/index.html accessed 15 October 2008).
The league currently has nine full members:
|Adrian College||Adrian, Michigan||Bulldogs||1859||Private/Methodist||1,671||19082|
|Albion College||Albion, Michigan||Britons||1835||Private/Methodist||1,568||1888|
|Alma College||Alma, Michigan||Scots||1886||Private/Presbyterian||1,400||1902|
|Calvin University||Grand Rapids, Michigan||Knights||1876||Private/Christian Reformed||3,746||1953|
|Hope College||Holland, Michigan||Flying Dutchmen||1866||Private/Reformed||3,150||1926|
|Kalamazoo College||Kalamazoo, Michigan||Hornets||1833||Private/Non-sectarian||1,436||1896|
|Olivet College||Olivet, Michigan||Comets||1844||Private/United Church of Christ||1,086||18883|
|Saint Mary's College 1||Notre Dame, Indiana||Belles||1844||Private/Catholic||2,658||1997|
|Trine University||Angola, Indiana||Thunder||1884||Private/Non-sectarian||4,104||2004|
|Finlandia University||Hancock, Michigan||1896||550||Lions||2018||football||C2C|
|Defiance College||Defiance, Ohio||Yellow Jackets||1850||Private/United Church of Christ||1,000||1997||2000||HCAC|
|Eastern Michigan University||Ypsilanti, Michigan||Eagles||1849||Public||22,974||1892||1926|| MAC |
|Hillsdale College||Hillsdale, Michigan||Chargers||1844||Private/Non-sectarian||1,200||1888||1961|| G-MAC |
|Michigan State University||East Lansing, Michigan||Spartans||1855||Public||45,520||1888||1907|| Big Ten |
|Institution||Location||Nickname||Founded||Type||Enrollment||Joined||Left||Current conference||MIAA sport|
|Wisconsin Lutheran College||Milwaukee, Wisconsin||Warriors||1973||Private/Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod||765||2002–03||2007–08||NACC||football|
Member teams compete in cross country, football (men only), golf, soccer, volleyball (women only), basketball, swimming, baseball (men only), softball (women only), tennis, lacrosse, outdoor track and field, and indoor track and field. As a women's school, Saint Mary's does not participate in football or baseball.
Kalamazoo College, also known as K College or simply K, is a private liberal arts college founded in 1833 in Kalamazoo, Michigan. The college campus is located immediately east of Western Michigan University. The school was founded by American Baptist ministers, but today it maintains no religious affiliation.
Olivet College is a private Christian college in Olivet, Michigan. Olivet College is affiliated with the United Church of Christ and the National Association of Congregational Christian Churches and stands in the Reformed tradition of Protestantism. The college is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. It was founded in 1844 by missionaries from Oberlin College, and it followed Oberlin in becoming the second coeducational college or university in the United States.
The Houston Cougars are the athletic teams representing the University of Houston. Informally, the Houston Cougars have also been referred to as the Coogs, UH, or simply Houston. Houston's nickname was suggested by early physical education instructor of the university and former head football coach, John R. Bender after one of his former teams, Washington State later adopted the mascot and nickname. The teams compete in the NCAA's Division I and the Football Bowl Subdivision as members of the American Athletic Conference.
The Michigan State Spartans football program (MSU) represents Michigan State University in college football at the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision level. The Spartans are members of the Big Ten Conference. Michigan State has a total of six national championships. The Spartans have also won eleven conference championships, with two in Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association and nine in the Big Ten. The Spartans compete with in-state rival Michigan for the Paul Bunyan Trophy.
The Eastern Michigan Eagles are a college football program at Eastern Michigan University. They compete in Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and the Mid-American Conference. Past names include "Michigan State Normal College Normalites", "Michigan State Normal College Hurons", and "Eastern Michigan Hurons".
The Valparaiso Crusaders is the former name of the athletic teams from Valparaiso University, often referred to as Valpo, in Valparaiso, Indiana, United States. The Crusaders compete in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) at the Division I level and are members of the Missouri Valley Conference in all sports except football, bowling, men's tennis, and men's swimming.
The Western Michigan Broncos are a National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I program representing Western Michigan University (WMU) in college athletics. They compete in the Mid-American Conference in men's baseball, basketball, football, soccer and tennis; and women's basketball, cross-country, golf, gymnastics, soccer, softball, track and field, and volleyball. The men's ice hockey team competes in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference. The Broncos also have a flight team, the SkyBroncos, who have won the National Intercollegiate Flying Association (NIFA) National Championship award five times.
Dale Reese Sprankle was a sports coach and athletic director at both Adrian College and Albion College in Michigan. Over the course of his 35-year career, Sprankle won 23 Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) conference championships in four sports, making him one of the winningest coaches in that conference's history.
The Emporia State Hornets are the athletic teams that represent Emporia State University (ESU). The women's basketball and softball teams use the name Lady Hornets. The university's athletic program fields 15 varsity teams in 11 sports all of whom have combined to win 50 conference championships as well as three national championships. Corky the Hornet serves as the mascot representing the teams, and the school colors are black and gold. Emporia State participates in the NCAA Division II and has been a member of the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA) since 1991.
The Cal State Fullerton Titans are the athletic teams that represent California State University, Fullerton.
Edwin J. Mather was an American football and basketball player and coach. He was selected as an All-Western football player while playing for Lake Forest University in 1909 and went on to a coaching career at Kalamazoo College (1911–1916), Lake Forest (1916–1918), and the University of Michigan (1919–1928).
The Calvin Knights are the Calvin University athletics teams. Calvin University fields are ten men's and eleven women's varsity intercollegiate teams that participate in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association at the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division III level.
The Hillsdale Chargers are the athletic teams that represent Hillsdale College, located in Hillsdale, Michigan, in NCAA Division II intercollegiate sporting competitions. The Chargers are currently members of the Great Midwest Athletic Conference as of 2017. The Chargers had been members of the GLIAC since 1975.
Richard R. "Bud" Daugherty was an American football, basketball, baseball, and track and field coach and college athletics administrator. He served as the head football coach at Jamestown College—now known as the University of Jamestown—in Jamestown, North Dakota from 1916 to 1917, Dakota Wesleyan University in Mitchell, South Dakota from 1919 to 1926, and Albion College in Albion, Michigan from 1927 to 1935, compiling a career college football coaching record of 80–50–8. Daugherty was also the head basketball coach at Dakota Wesleyan from 1918 to 1927 and Albion from 1927 to 1937, tallying a career college basketball coaching mark of 149–114.
Frank L. Joranko was an American football and baseball player and coach. He was the head baseball coach at Albion College from 1973 to 1995, the head football coach from 1973 to 1982, and the athletic director from 1975 to 1991.
The 1901 Michigan Agricultural Aggies football team was an American football team that represented Michigan Agricultural College as an independent during the 1901 college football season. In its first year under head coach George Denman, the team compiled a 3–4–1 record and outscored opponents by a total of 120 to 94. The team played its home games at College Field in East Lansing, Michigan.
The MIAA Men's Basketball Tournament is the annual conference basketball championship tournament for the NCAA Division III Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association. The tournament has been held annually since the NEAC's foundation in 1992. It is a single-elimination tournament and seeding is based on regular season records.
The 1901 Albion football team, sometimes known as the Albion Methodists, was an American football team that represented Albion College in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) during the 1901 college football season. The team compiled a 7–4–1 record. One year earlier, the 1900 Albion team was the MIAA champion with a 6–1–2 record and six shutouts to its credit.
The 1904 Albion football team, sometimes known as the Albion Methodists, was an American football team that represented Albion College in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) during the 1904 college football season. In its first season under head coach Walter S. Kennedy, Albion compiled a 7–0–1 record, held every opponent scoreless, outscored opponents by a total of 206 to 0, and won the MIAA championship. The team's victories included games against two future Division I FBS programs, a 4–0 victory over otherwise undefeated Michigan Agricultural and a 68–0 victory over Michigan State Normal.
The 1894 Albion football team was an American football team that represented Albion College in the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) during the 1894 college football season. Under first-year head coach Walter B. Gage, Albion won the MIAA championship, with victories over Hillsdale and Olivet and a victory over Notre Dame in their Thanksgiving Day game.