Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference
The Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC), commonly known as the Rocky Mountain Conference (RMC) from approximately 1910 through the late 1960s, is a collegiate athletic conference which operates in the western United States, mostly in Colorado with members in Nebraska, New Mexico, South Dakota, and Utah. It participates in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)'s Division II.
|Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference|
|Members||16 (15 in 2020)|
|Region||Mountain States and Great Plains|
|Former names||Colorado Faculty Athletic Conference (1909–1910)|
Rocky Mountain Faculty Athletic Conference (1910–1967)
|Headquarters||Colorado Springs, Colorado|
|Commissioner||Chris Graham (since 2013)|
Founded in 1909, the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference is the fifth oldest active college athletic conference in the United States, the oldest in NCAA Division II, and the sixth to be founded after the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association, the Big Ten Conference, the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association, the Ohio Athletic Conference, and the Missouri Valley Conference. For its first 30 years, the RMAC was considered a major conference, equivalent to today's NCAA Division I, before seven of its larger members left in 1938 to form the Mountain States Conference, also called the Skyline Conference.
The original name of Colorado Faculty Athletic Conference was changed to Rocky Mountain Faculty Athletic Conference (RMFAC) on May 7, 1910. The presidents assumed control of the league from the faculty in 1967 and changed the name to Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference. The Colorado Athletic Conference dissolved in 1996 with the RMAC absorbing the remaining CAC teams.
- Colorado–Colorado Springs was an affiliate member in 1996–97.
- Dixie State football was an affiliate member from 2016 to 2018.
- Fort Lewis was an affiliate member from 1990 to 1994.
Dixie State announced on January 11, 2019 that it would leave the RMAC after the 2019–20 school year to begin a transition to NCAA Division I, joining the Western Athletic Conference (WAC). Since the WAC does not sponsor football, Trailblazers football will become an FCS independent.
|Lindenwood University||St. Charles, Missouri||1827||11,904||Lady Lions||2013||lacrosse (W)||Great Lakes Valley|
|University of Nebraska at Kearney||Kearney, Nebraska||1905||7,052||Lopers||2014||swimming & diving (W)||Mid-America|
|Oklahoma Baptist University||Shawnee, Oklahoma||1910||2,097||Bison||2016||lacrosse (W);
swimming & diving (M);
swimming & diving (W)
|Oklahoma Christian University||Oklahoma City, Oklahoma||1950||2,479||Eagles & Lady Eagles||2017||swimming & diving (M);
swimming & diving (W)
|Rockhurst University||Kansas City, Missouri||1910||3,000||Hawks||2013||lacrosse (W)||Great Lakes Valley|
|San Francisco State University||San Francisco, California||1899||28,290||Gators||1997||wrestling||California|
- Lindenwood men's and women's swimming & diving was an affiliate member from 2014 to 2016.
- Nebraska–Kearney was a full member in 1989–90 and from 1994 to 2012.
- Rockhurst men's lacrosse lacrosse was also an affiliate member from 2015 to 2018.
- Denver — was an affiliate member in 1996–97.
- Fort Hays State — wrestling was an affiliate member in 2006–2012.
Former affiliate members
A total of 49 different schools have been associated with the RMAC, either through full or associate membership. Of those schools, only Colorado Mines has been with the conference every year since it was founded in 1909.
Full member (all sports) Full member (non-football) Associate member (football-only) Associate member (sport)
- 1909: The Colorado Faculty Athletic Conference was formed on March 6 with four charter members: University of Colorado, Colorado A&M (now Colorado State University), Colorado College and Colorado School of Mines.
- 1910: The league changed its name to the Rocky Mountain Faculty Athletic Conference (RFMAC). The University of Denver and University of Utah join the league, but Colorado College drops out after a fallout with Colorado School of Mines. Membership is at five schools.
- 1914: Colorado College rejoins the RFMAC. Utah State University also joins the league to bring membership up to seven.
- 1917: Montana State University joins the conference.
- 1918: Brigham Young University joins the league as the ninth member.
- 1921: The University of Wyoming joins the conference.
- 1924: Western State College and the University of Northern Colorado join the league, giving the RFMAC 12 members.
- 1937: Colorado, Colorado State, Brigham Young, Utah, Utah State, Wyoming and Denver leave the conference to form the Skyline Conference. The five remaining members of the RFMAC were Colorado College, Colorado Mines, Montana State, Northern Colorado and Western State.
- 1948: Idaho State University joins as the sixth member.
- 1956: Adams State College joins the conference as the seventh member.
- 1958: Idaho State leaves the conference.
- 1959: Montana State leaves the conference, membership is back down to five.
- 1967: The RFMAC changes its name to the current Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC). Eleven schools join the conference in 1967. They were: Emporia State University, Fort Hays State University, Fort Lewis College, the University of Nebraska at Omaha, Pittsburg State University, the University of Southern Colorado (now Colorado State University-Pueblo), Southern Utah State University, Regis University, Washburn University, Western New Mexico University and Westminster College of Utah. Colorado College is not included in this new league. The new league divided into two divisions: Mountains and Plains.
- 1968: New Mexico Highlands University joins the RMAC.
- 1969: New Mexico Highlands leaves the RMAC due to financial aid restrictions.
- 1972: For economic reasons, the two divisions were split into two separate conferences. The Mountain Division kept the RMAC name while the Plains Division became known as the Great Plains Athletic Conference. The two allied conferences worked under the name of the Mountain and Plains Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MPIAA). RMAC membership stood at eight with Adams State, Colorado Mines, Fort Lewis, Regis, Southern Utah State, Western New Mexico, Western State and Westminster. Northern Colorado ended up leaving the association to become an independent.
- 1974: New Mexico Highlands rejoins the RMAC as the ninth member.
- 1975: Mesa State College becomes the 10th member of the RMAC.
- 1976: The MPIAA was dissolved for economic reasons and the two conferences went their separate ways. Colorado State University-Pueblo switched conferences and joined the RMAC as its 11th member.
- 1978: The RMAC beings sponsoring women's championships.
- 1979: Westminster drops athletics and as a result leaves the RMAC, leaving the league with 10 members.
- 1983: Regis leaves the RMAC to become an independent, leaving the league with nine teams.
- 1986: Southern Utah State left the league, dropping membership to eight.
- 1988: New Mexico Highlands withdraws from the conference to shrink the membership to seven schools.
- 1989: Chadron State College, Fort Hays State University, Kearney State College (now University of Nebraska at Kearney) and Wayne State College announce intentions to join.
- 1990: Wayne State College and Kearney State College withdraw their interest in joining the league. Western New Mexico and Colorado State University-Pueblo announce that they are leaving the RMAC. Fort Lewis announces their intention to leave, however they stay on as an associate member of the conference. New Mexico Highlands rejoins the RMAC.
- 1992: The RMAC becomes affiliated with the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) at the Division II level.
- 1994: Fort Lewis once again became a full member of the RMAC. Nebraska-Kearney also was voted into membership.
- 1996: Colorado Christian University and Metropolitan State College join the RMAC. Regis and Colorado State University-Pueblo rejoin the league. All four are full members. Also, the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and the University of Denver join the RMAC as affiliate and associate members, respectively. The RMAC, now comprising fourteen schools, splits into two seven-team divisions.
- 1997: Denver left to move up to Division I. Colorado-Colorado Springs became a full member. San Francisco State joined the RMAC as an associate member in wrestling only.
- 2006: Fort Hays State left the RMAC for the MIAA (FHSU did remain in the RMAC as an associate member in wrestling). Western New Mexico rejoined the conference, keeping membership at 14 schools.
- 2007: Grand Canyon University joined the RMAC as an associate member only in wrestling. Montana State University Billings joined the RMAC as an associate member for women's golf and men's and women's tennis.
- 2008: Texas-Permian Basin and the University of the Incarnate Word joined the RMAC as associate members for swimming only. Grand Canyon added men's and women's swimming to its RMAC membership.
- 2009: Northern State University and Minnesota State University Moorhead joined the RMAC as associate members in swimming.
- 2012: Nebraska-Kearney left the RMAC to join the MIAA. Black Hills State University moved up from the NAIA to NCAA Division II and joined the RMAC to keep the number of full members at 14. Fort Hays State wrestling left once the MIAA began sponsoring that sport. Minnesota State Moorhead and Northern State women's swimming left when their full-time home of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference began sponsoring the sport.
- 2013: California Baptist University became an RMAC associate in three sports—men's and women's swimming, plus wrestling. Two schools joined for women's lacrosse only—Lindenwood University and Rockhurst University. Grand Canyon and Incarnate Word ended their RMAC associate memberships and started transitions to NCAA Division I; Grand Canyon moved to the Western Athletic Conference and Incarnate Word joined the Southland Conference, with the latter's swimming teams joining the league now known as the Coastal Collegiate Sports Association. UT–Permian Basin moved its swimming teams to the single-sport New South Intercollegiate Swim Conference.
- 2014: South Dakota School of Mines and Technology joined the RMAC.
- 2015: Westminster College (Utah) rejoined the RMAC. Rockhurst added men's lacrosse to its RMAC membership. Oklahoma Baptist University joined in women's lacrosse, plus men's and women's swimming.
- 2016: Western New Mexico left for the Lone Star Conference, dropping the RMAC's full-time membership to 15. Two schools joined as associate members: Dixie State University in football, and Maryville University in men's lacrosse.
- 2017: Maryville men's lacrosse left the RMAC when its primary home of the Great Lakes Valley Conference began sponsoring the sport. Oklahoma Christian University became an associate in men's and women's swimming.
- 2018: Dixie State became an all-sports RMAC member. California Baptist ended its RMAC associate memberships to move to Division I; both swimming teams joined CBU's new home of the WAC, while wrestling became an independent. After Rockhurst's affiliation contract with the RMAC in men's lacrosse expired, that team joined the school's other sports in the GLVC; women's lacrosse remains in the RMAC, as the GLVC sponsors lacrosse only for men. The RMAC dropped men's tennis as a conference sport.
- 2019: Dixie State announced it would leave the RMAC to join Division I and the WAC in 2020.
|Swimming & Diving|
|Track & Field Indoor|
|Track & Field Outdoor|
Men's sponsored sports by school
|Black Hills State||5|
|New Mexico Highlands||5|
|South Dakota Mines||7|
|San Francisco State||1|
Women's sponsored sports by school
|Black Hills State||8|
|New Mexico Highlands||7|
|South Dakota Mines||6|
- RMAC History
- University of Southern Colorado (1975-2003)
- Judd, Brandon (January 11, 2019). "Dixie State to move up to Division I, join Western Athletic Conference in 2020-21". Deseret News. Salt Lake City. Retrieved January 22, 2019.
- "Western State Colorado University - SDSM&T approved as 15th member of the RMAC". Gomountaineers.com. 2014-01-20. Retrieved 2015-07-18.
- Morton, Aaron (February 11, 2014). "Westminster looks to make move to the NCAA Division II ranks". Deseret News.
- Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference. "Westminster approved to become member of NCAA Division II". August 4, 2015.