The ever-growing Division III membership spurs creation of task force to examine its future.
February 19, 2002 GENEVA, N.Y.—Susan Bassett, athletics director at William Smith College, has been appointed by the NCAA Division III Presidents Council to serve on a task force of college presidents and athletics directors that will help determine the future of NCAA Division III athletics. Division III athletics is the largest division of the national association and it is expected to grow by nearly 13 percent over the next few years potentially reaching 450 members. The task force will help determine how to best manage the seemingly unwieldy number.
The task force—that will meet for the first time in March—has been divided into an oversight committee and subgroups that will examine such aspects as legislative issues, organizational changes, budget issues, championship access, playing and practice seasons, financial aid, and recruiting and eligibility. The task force hopes to create a better structure to receive input from the governance structure as well as the general membership. They intend to provide a comprehensive update to its members at the NCAA Convention held in Anaheim, Calif., in January 2003.
Bassett is vice chair of the NCAA Division III Management Council and member since 1999. She has been William Smith athletics director since 1995. Bassett is the only representative on the 34-person task force from the Finger Lakes area. Other task force members from upstate New York include Karen L. Johnson, of Alfred State, and Muriel A. Howard, of Buffalo State.
“We look forward to the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead for Division III,” said Bassett. “This is a critical time to examine the membership structure and weigh the priorities and needs of the organization. I am privileged and excited to be part of the process.”
Bassett holds a bachelor’s degree in physical education from Ithaca College and a master’s degree in physical education from Indiana University. She served as assistant director of athletics, aquatics director, and head men and women’s swimming coach at Union College from 1987 through 1995. Bassett was the head coach of swimming at William Smith from 1980 through 1987.
Hobart and William Smith Colleges are coordinate, private, liberal arts institutions, located in Geneva, N.Y. Hobart College for men and William Smith College for women share faculty, facilities, and curriculum, but maintain separate dean's offices, athletics programs, student governments, and traditions. Hobart and William Smith field 21 intercollegiate varsity teams. Over the past 30 years, the Colleges have captured 20 national championships and dozens of conference championships.
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