FGCUAthletics.com
CCSA Announces Conference Expansion
Thursday, August 29, 2013 | by TheCCSA.com
FGCU has won five straight Coastal Collegiate Swimming Association titles.
FGCU has won five straight Coastal Collegiate Swimming Association titles.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (TheCCSA.com) – The Coastal Collegiate Swimming Association (CCSA) is pleased to announce the additions of the University of the Incarnate Word, the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and the New Jersey Institute of Technology beginning with the 2013-14 campaign.

“On behalf of the CCSA institutions and our student-athletes, we are proud to welcome three outstanding universities to our membership,” said CCSA Executive Director Ted Gumbart.  “UMBC, New Jersey Institute of Technology and the University of the Incarnate Word each help strengthen the overall performance of the CCSA, and all promote programs that value the full student-athlete experience.  We look forward to building a great relationship with each of our new teams, and bragging often about their achievements in the classroom and in the pool.”

Incarnate Word will compete in both men’s and women’s swimming, while UMBC and NJIT will compete in men’s swimming, becoming the fifth, sixth and seventh members of the CCSA’s men’s program.

FGCU, which only has a women's swimming and diving program, claimed its fifth consecutive CCSA title last year, capturing 13 of a possible 20 first-place finishes en route to recording five program and conference records. The Eagles - who had 28 members named to the CCSA All-Academic Team this past season - return several key members from that championship squad, including reigning Swimmer of the Year Emma Svensson (Upsala, Sweden/Celsiusskolan).

The UIW men’s program is entering its seventh season of competition while the women’s program enters their 12th year.  The UMBC swimming program enters its 28th season of competition in 2013-14, and has won a total of 19 conference championships in its history, having competed previously in the East Coast Conference, Northeast Conference and America East Conference.  NJIT is entering its fifth season competing at the Division I level after becoming championship-eligible in 2009.  The Highlanders’ swimming program began in 1967-68 and has competed at the Division I, II and III levels.

“Becoming a member of the CCSA has completed one more piece of the Division I reclassification puzzle and solidified the opportunities for our swim and dive teams,” said UIW Director of Athletics Mark Papich.  “Having a home conference for competition provides a great benefit to our student-athletes both during and after our transition to Division I.”

“We appreciate the opportunity that the CCSA is extending to our men’s program,” stated UMBC Director of Athletics Tim Hall.  “This move allows our swimmers the chance to compete and contend for a championship at the highest level.”

“We are very excited to have our swimming program join the CCSA and its member institutions,” added NJIT Director of Athletics Lenny Kaplan.  “It will provide new competitive horizons for our student-athletes and, in turn, to earn recognition for their accomplishments.”

The 2013-14 CCSA season begins in September and the CCSA Championships are set for Feb. 20-22, 2014 in Knoxville, Tenn.