Grand Canyon University, the private, Christian University in central Phoenix, accepted an invitation to join the Western Athletic Conference Tuesday. The institution will begin the process of reclassification from NCAA Division II to NCAA Division I status in time for the 2013-14 athletic calendar.
“This is an historic day in the life of Grand Canyon University,” said Brian Mueller, the University’s president and chief executive officer. “We have made a commitment to excellence in athletics, just as we have academically, and that commitment has been recognized by the invitation to join the Western Athletic Conference, a conference with a storied past. NCAA Division I status will raise our university’s profile and illuminate the great things happening at Grand Canyon.”
The men’s basketball program, which won three NAIA National Championships (most recently in 1988) is one of the higher profile sports on campus, and the program’s head coach couldn’t be happier about the move.