Dixie State Athletics To Go Division I in 2020

Dixie State Athletics To Go Division I in 2020

ST. GEORGE, Utah-Friday afternoon, Dixie State University President Dr. Richard B. Williams confirmed the St. George-based institution has accepted an invitation to have its athletic department join the Western Athletic Conference.

This means the Trailblazers will advance to NCAA Division I in all sports, effective July 2020. Dixie State currently competes in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference of NCAA Division II in all sports.

The announcement was broadcast live on the university’s YouTube page at the Dixie State Student Activities Center on campus.

Those in attendance included former Dixie College basketball star and future NBA All-Star and head coach Lionel Hollins, who served as emcee of the event, Utah Governor Gary Herbert and WAC commissioner Jeff Hurd.

Dixie State University will offically apply for NCAA Division I status in June 2020.

Upon completion of their four-year reclassification process, the Trailblazers will be eligible for NCAA Division I postseason play in the 2024-25 season.

This will mean a possible berth in the wildly popular NCAA Division I men’s basketball tournament (“March Madness”) should the Trailblazers win the WAC men’s basketball tournament at that time.

Dixie State has been competing at the NCAA Division II level since the 2006-07 academic campaign at which point they left behind NJCAA junior college status.

Dixie State currently sponsors 15 intercollegiate athletic programs, including six men’s sports and nine women’s sports.

During this reclassification period, 14 of the Trailblazers’ 15 sports will compete in the WAC.

The glaring exception is football, which will compete as an FCS independent as the WAC does not sponsor football.

At the end of today’s meeting it was confirmed that in 600 days (September 6, 2020) Dixie State’s first Division I college football game in program history will occur against regional rival Southern Utah at Eccles Coliseum in Cedar City.

The Trailblazers have also secured future football games against SUU’s Big Sky Conference rivals, Weber State and Montana State.