BURNABY, B.C. -- Simon Fraser University was approved Friday as the first non-U.S. member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), the school said in a release.
Beginning with the 2011-12 season, after a two-year transition period, all of SFU's Clan varsity teams will compete in the NCAA's Division II in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference.
The Division II membership committee approved SFU's application during a meeting at NCAA headquarters in Indianapolis.
"This is a first for a Canadian university, and it reflects SFU's long history of competing in U.S. varsity associations and conferences," SFU president Michael Stevenson said in a release.
"It means a high level of competition and challenge for our athletes."
SFU currently has 19 Clan teams competing in the small-college National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics in the U.S. and Canadian Interuniversity Sport. Men wrestling, now competes in both NAIA and CIS.
The Great Northwest Athletic Conference has nine full-member schools in Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Montana, and four football-only members in Washington, California, Utah and Oregon.