College Spotlight: MEC, G-MAC Athletics Seasons in Review
The 2013-14 Division-II College Athletics season saw many great moments across the area.
The season began with lots of questions after the breakup of the WVIAC. Fairmont State, Glenville State and West Virginia Wesleyan accepted offers to become new members of the Mountain East Conference. In turn, Alderson Broaddus, Davis & Elkins and Salem International agreed to join the Great Midwest Athletic Conference. It was a big change for fans across the area, and one that many feel as though didn't need to happen. Nonetheless, both parties went their separate ways and created new rivalries.
Alderson Broaddus kicked off a brand new football season for the first time in more than 80 years. The Battlers also introduced us to their new digs -- the Performance Stadium. The multi-million-dollar facility is the new home to ABU's football, soccer and lacrosse teams.
Fairmont State began the local college basketball season with the most hype. Falcons Head Coach Jerrod Calhoun brought in a dynamic recruiting class, featuring several players who received Division-I offers as well. Fairmont State's top moment of the year was when they knocked off the West Liberty Hilltoppers. The Falcons hadn't beaten West Liberty since 2008, resulting in a court-storming of fans after the game.
West Virginia Wesleyan also enjoyed yet another outstanding softball season. The Lady Bobcats advanced to the NCAA Super Regional in West Chester, Pa., only to fall to West Chester in a win-or-go-home deciding game. Wesleyan Head Coach Steve Warner also received the Mountain East Conference Coach of the Year.
The future of both conferences remains bright. The G-MAC plans to add several more schools in the coming years, while the Mountain East will continue to build on its core members, along with the unparallel success of the West Liberty men's basketball program. One thing is for certain, the changes made in terms of conference affiliation among the area schools will only become a thing of the past. This is the present and future of college athletics, like it or not.