St. Thomas University (Minnesota) will be receiving an invitation to join the Summit League according to The Star Tribune. This move likely thwarts the short term bid by tiny Sioux Falls based Augustana College to join the Summit League.
St Thomas is a Division III school and will require an NCAA waiver to make the jump. If approved by the NCAA, they will join the Summit League in 2021. They were a member of the MIAC (Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Association) but were so dominant there that they were expelled from the league this past season. They currently offer men’s sports in baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, soccer, tennis and track & field. They offer women’s sports in baseball, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, tennis, track & field, volleyball and beach volleyball.
— Star Tribune Sports (@StribSports) October 4, 2019
The University of St. Thomas is located in St. Paul Minnesota and enrolls nearly 10,000 students, making it Minnesota’s largest private, non-profit university. Their school colors are purple and gray and the athletic teams are called the Tommies.
The addition of the University of St. Thomas was the best option for the Summit League with a wobbly Western Illinois University on the financial ropes. Earlier this year, UMKC received an invitation to join the Summit League to replace the departing Fort Wayne. This move adds stability to the Summit League and brings in a solid, proven athletic program in St. Thomas – even though they are currently a high-level Division III program.
This takes Summit League membership to 10 teams after the departure of Fort Wayne and the addition of UMKC. Should Western Illinois exit, Augustana could possibly fill the void. In the interim, they may be limited to the conference of the last resort, the WAC. The WAC also just added Tarleton State, ugh.