NASHVILLE, Tenn. - - To honor Belmont University Athletics' vast achievements over its 20 years as an NCAA Division I member institution, BelmontBruins.com continues its list of the Top 20 moments and accomplishments over the last two decades.
Today, we unveil moment No. 8 - Belmont University accepts an invitation to join the Ohio Valley Conference.
May 13, 2011 will always be a monumental date in the history of Belmont University Athletics. For on that date, Belmont University blazed a new trail for its athletic program, charting a new course in a league steeped in history and full of familiar faces.
As Belmont University President Dr. Robert C. Fisher stepped to the podium before a packed gathering of media members, Belmont community members and guests, he proudly announced that Belmont had accepted an invitation to join the OVC as its 12th member institution, effective July 1, 2012.
“The Ohio Valley Conference is one of the most tradition-rich and respected athletic conferences in NCAA Division I,” Fisher said. “We were honored by the invitation to join such a great family of fine universities, and look forward to establishing new traditions and new friendships.”
“Given Belmont University’s commitment to excellence, both in the classroom and on the playing fields, they are a wonderful fit for the Ohio Valley Conference,” said Beth DeBauche, OVC Commissioner. “I am delighted to welcome them to the Conference. They are a wonderful addition and the right fit for the OVC.”
Commissioner DeBauche's remarks that day proved prescient, as the Belmont-OVC relationship has been a win-win. Belmont student-athletes have benefitted from enhanced competition, natural rivalries, and reduction in travel and missed classes.
“The addition of Belmont University adds great value to our already stable and healthy Conference,” said Dr. Thomas Rakes, recently outgoing University of Tennessee at Martin Chancellor and past Chair of the OVC Board of Presidents.
Belmont University remains Proud to Be in the OVC.