A NCAA Division III school is making the jump to Division II, and joining the Great Lakes Valley Conference. Lisle, Illinois’ Benedictine University will become the 16th member of the conference beginning with the 2019-2020 academic year. According to a GLVC news release, the conference formally invited Benedictine to be admitted to the league in October 2017, which then prompted the Benedictine Board of Trustees to approve the University’s submission of an application to reclassify from NCAA Division III to Division II in December. On February 1st, Benedictine successfully submitted application for NCAA Division II membership. Benedictine currently sponsors 19 sports, 17 of which are sponsored by the GLVC.

Benedictine will officially become a GLVC member upon receipt of initiation fees, entitling the institution to voting privileges in 2018-19, and regular season competition beginning in 2019-20 during its second provisional year of the DII membership process. During this time, the Eagles will be eligible to compete in GLVC Championship events that are not tied to an NCAA Championship automatic qualifying bid, as they are ineligible for all NCAA Division II postseason competition. After successful completion of the third and final provisional year of the transition (2020-21), Benedictine will become active members of NCAA Division II, enabling its teams and student-athletes the ability to compete in all GLVC and NCAA Championships.

The GLVC previously had 16 member schools, but dropped to 15 one year ago when Saint Joseph’s College suspended operations. The conference will have 14 schools for the upcoming year with the departure of University of Wisconsin-Parkside. The conference added Southwest Baptist University to the conference a few months ago, and they will also begin competing in the 2019-2020 academic year. Like SBU, Benedictine is a football-playing school.

Lisle, Illinois is 25 miles west of Chicago. The private school has an enrollment of over 5,000.

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