Posted: 8/31/17

TAMIU Joining Lone Star Conference in 2019-20


TAMIU Dustdevil  Mascot
The Dustdevils are making a move to the Lone Star Conference.  

The Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) Department of Athletics announced its formal acceptance to join the Lone Star Conference this week. The University joins the conference in the fall of 2019.

TAMIU is one of eight schools accepting invitations after the Lone Star Conference Council of Presidents voted unanimously this summer to offer full membership to the University of Arkansas Fort Smith, Dallas Baptist University, Lubbock Christian University, Oklahoma Christian University, Rogers State University, St. Edward’s University, St. Mary’s University, and TAMIU 

TAMIU President Dr. Pablo Arenaz commented, “We have enjoyed a long and meaningful relationship with the Heartland Conference, and now look forward to the next step in our Dustdevil Athletics Program’s growth and development.  We are tremendously proud of our student-athletes and their accomplishments to date, and eager to move forward through this transition period and become part of the Lone Star Conference.”

The expansion will make the Lone Star Conference a 19-member league with 13 members in Texas, three in Oklahoma, two in New Mexico, and one in Arkansas. With 19 members, the Lone Star Conference will become the biggest conference in NCAA Division II.  The Lone Star Conference, founded in 1931, the Lone Star Conference started as a five-member conference of Texas-based schools 

Director of Athletics Griz Zimmermann said, “The opportunity to join the Lone Star Conference is much more than an opportunity for our athletic program but a tremendous opportunity for our University. Joining the largest conference in Division II offers a great opportunity to showcase the City of Laredo, our University, and the accomplishments of our Student-Athletes on a new level.”

TAMIU will join Angelo State, Cameron, Eastern New Mexico, Midwestern State, Tarleton State, Texas A&M-Commerce, Texas A&M-Kingsville, Texas Woman’s, UT Permian Basin, West Texas A&M University, and Western New Mexico University to form the expanded conference 

Lone Star Conference Commissioner Jay Poerner said, “This is an exciting time for the Lone Star Conference. The addition of these eight schools makes the Lone Star Conference the largest and most dynamic conference in NCAA Division II. These 19 institutions will represent the very best in Division II through a shared commitment to excellence in academics, athletics and student-athlete development, I am thankful to the leadership of the Lone Star Conference Council of Presidents for its guidance in leading this expansion effort.”

Adding the eight institutions marks the Lone Star Conference’s first expansion since UT Permian Basin and Western New Mexico joined the conference in 2016.  It has had 38 institutions compete as members over its 86-year history.

The Lone Star Conference conducts conference championships in 17 sports (eight men and nine women). Men's championships include football, cross country, basketball, baseball, indoor track and field, outdoor track and field, golf and tennis. Women's titles are determined in volleyball, soccer, cross country, basketball, softball, indoor track and field, outdoor track and field, tennis and golf.

TAMIU will continue play in the Heartland Conference throughout the transition, with the last season being 2018-19.

TAMIU joined the Heartland Conference in 2008 and has experienced a multitude of success, making 40 Heartland Conference Tournament appearances, seven Heartland Conference Championships, and five NCAA Tournament appearances.

Zimmermann observed, “We have had success in the Heartland Conference and have grown our program to new levels since 2008, this opportunity will allow us to continue our growth and build on our previous success.”

To learn more about the Lone Star Conference, visit www.lonestarconference.org.


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