Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Mystique of the Border Conference

The Mystique of the Border Conference

By John Hall
The Daily Magi
September 15, 2043


The Border Conference (officially known as the Border Intercollegiate Athletic Association), was an NCAA-affiliated college athletic conference founded in 1931 that disbanded following the 1961–62 season. Centered in the southwestern United States, the conference formerly included nine member institutions located in the states of Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas.

Charter members playing American football (and years of membership) included:


  • Arizona (1931–1961)
  • Arizona State Teachers'-Flagstaff (now Northern Arizona; 1931–1952)
  • Arizona State Teachers'-Tempe (now Arizona State; 1931–1961)
  • University of New Mexico (1931–1951)
  • New Mexico A&M (now New Mexico State; 1931–1961).

Other members competing in football (and years of membership) included:


  • Texas Technological College (1932–1956) (now Texas Tech)
  • Texas Mines (later Texas Western and now the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP); 1935–1961)
  • Hardin-Simmons (1941–1961)
  • West Texas Teachers’ (later West Texas State and now West Texas A&M; 1941–1961).


Texas Tech holds the most conference championships at seven. Arizona State won six conference championships followed by Arizona (three), Hardin-Simmons (two) and both West Texas State and the Texas State School of Mines hold one each. From 1932-1934, and 1943-1945 no champion was named. There were only two seasons where the title was split and two co-champions were named; 1938, New Mexico and New Mexico State and in 1942 Hardin-Simmons and Texas Tech. The winner of the conference title often received an invite to the Sun Bowl in El Paso, Texas. 

The nine former football-playing members of the Border Intercollegiate Athletic Association are currently affiliated with the following eight conferences (all NCAA Division I FBS unless indicated):


  • Arizona State University and University of Arizona - Pacific-12 Conference
  • Hardin-Simmons University - American Southwest Conference (Division III)
  • University of New Mexico - Mountain West Conference
  • New Mexico State University - Western Athletic Conference
  • Northern Arizona University - Big Sky Conference (Division I FCS)
  • University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) - Conference USA
  • Texas Tech University - Big 12 Conference
  • West Texas A&M University - Lone Star Conference (Division II)

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