Friday, August 9, 2013

The mystique of the National Collegiate Athletic Association

[Image: 500px-NCAA_logo.svg.png]

The mystique of the National Collegiate Athletic Association

By Sakura Honda
The Daily Magi
October 4, 2050


The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) is a nonprofit association of 1,282 institutions, conferences, organizations and individuals that organizes the athletic programs of many colleges and universities in the United States and Canada. It is headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana.

In August 1973, the current three-division setup of Division I, Division II, and Division III was adopted by the NCAA membership in a special convention. Under NCAA rules, Division I and Division II schools can offer scholarships to athletes for playing a sport. Division III schools may not offer any athletic scholarships. Generally, larger schools compete in Division I and smaller schools in II and III. Division I football was further divided into I-A and I-AA in 1978. Subsequently the term "Division I-AAA" was briefly added to delineate Division I schools which do not field a football program at all, but that term is no longer officially used by the NCAA.[3] In 2006, Divisions I-A and I-AA were respectively renamed the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and Football Championship Subdivision (FCS).

Inter-collegiate sports in the US began in 1852 when crews from Harvard and Yale met in a challenge race in the sport of rowing. As rowing remained the preeminent sport in the country into the late-1800s, many of the initial debates about collegiate athletic eligibility and purpose were settled through organizations like the Rowing Association of American Colleges and the Intercollegiate Rowing Association. As other sports emerged, notably football and basketball, many of these same concepts and standards were adopted. Football, in particular, began to emerge as a marquee sport, but the rules of the game itself were in constant flux and often had to be adapted for each contest.

The NCAA dates its formation to two White House conferences convened by President Theodore Roosevelt to "encourage reforms" to college football practices in the early 20th century, which had resulted in repeated injuries and deaths and "prompted many college and universities to discontinue the sport." Following those White House meetings, Chancellor Henry MacCracken of New York University organized a meeting of 13 colleges and universities to initiate changes in football playing rules; at a follow-on meeting on December 28, 1905 in New York, 62 higher-education institutions became charter members of the Intercollegiate Athletic Association of the United States (IAAUS). The IAAUS was officially established on March 31, 1906, and took its present name, the NCAA, in 1910.

Until the 1980s, the association did not offer women's athletics. Instead an organization named the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW) governed women's collegiate sports in the United States. By 1982, however, all divisions of the NCAA offered national championship events for women's athletics and most members of the AIAW joined the NCAA. A year later the 75th Convention took an expansion to plan women's athletic program services. They pushed the women's championship program.

In 1999, the NCAA was sued for discriminating against female athletes under Title IX for systematically giving men in graduate school more waivers than woman to participate in college sports. In National Collegiate Athletic Association v. Smith, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the NCAA was not subject to that law, without reviewing the merits of the discrimination claim.

In 2009, Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada became the NCAA's first non-US member institution. One year later, Mitakihara University in Mitakihara Town, located across the Strait of Georgia on Vancouver Island, became the second.

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