Record Number of Colleges Add NCAA Football Teams In 2013

by Travis Normand

IRVING, Texas (July 9, 2013) – The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame (NFF) highlighted today that 12 new college football teams will take the field for the first time this season, including a record number of nine schools entering the NCAA in 2013.

See the entire press release HERE 

The following is an excerpt from the press release that I especially wanted to highlight. [Emphasis Added]

East Tennessee State University (ETSU) represents another program moving quickly to add football. After dropping the sport in 2003, ETSU administrators realized the absence had created a void, and they announced this spring that they would bring the sport back at the FCS level, retaining College Football Hall of Fame coach Phillip Fulmer as a consultant.  They quickly found a home in the Southern Conference, and Carl Torbush, who previously headed FBS programs at Louisiana Tech and North Carolina, recently accepted the head coaching job.

Here is a list of the 12 programs launching in 2013:

  1. Alderson Broaddus University (Philippi, W.Va.): NCAA Division II, Independent
  2. Berry College (Mount Berry, Ga.): NCAA Division III, Southern Athletic Association
  3. Florida Tech (Melbourne, Fla.): NCAA Division II, Gulf South Conference
  4. Hendrix College (Conway, Ark.): NCAA Division III, Southern Athletic Association
  5. Houston Baptist University (Houston, Texas): NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision, (Developmental season in 2013, joining the Southland Conference in 2014)
  6. Mercer University (Macon, Ga.): NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision, Pioneer Football League (joining the Southern Conference in 2014)
  7. Oklahoma Baptist University (Shawnee, Okla.): NAIA, Central States Football League
  8. Reinhardt University (Waleska, Ga.): NAIA, Mid-South Conference
  9. Southwestern University (Georgetown, Texas): NCAA Division III, Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference
  10. Stetson University (DeLand, Fla.): NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision, Pioneer Football League
  11. University of North Carolina at Charlotte (Charlotte, N.C.): NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision, Independent (starting in 2013 and subsequently joining the Football Bowl Subdivision and Conference USA in 2015)
  12. Warner University (Lake Wales, Fla.): NAIA, Independent (2013)
Here is a list of the 11 programs that are scheduled to launch between 2014-2016:

  1. College of Idaho (Caldwell, Idaho): NAIA, Applying to the Frontier Conference (2014)
  2. George Fox University (Newberg, Ore.): NCAA Division III, Northwest Conference (2014)
  3. Limestone College (Gaffney, S.C.): NCAA Division II, Independent (2014)
  4. Missouri Baptist University (Saint Louis, Mo.): NAIA, Mid-States Football Association (2014)
  5. Paine College (Augusta, Ga.): NCAA Division II, Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (2014)
  6. Southeastern University (Lakeland, Fla.): NAIA, Conference TBA (2014)
  7. East Tennessee State University (Johnson City, Tenn.): NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision, Southern Conference (2015, with a full conference schedule in 2016)
  8. Kennesaw State University (Kennesaw, Ga.): NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision, Conference TBA (2015)
  9. Lyon College (Batesville, Ark.): NAIA, Conference TBA (2015)
  10. Finlandia University (Hancock, Mich.): NCAA Division III, Conference TBA (Date TBA)
  11. University of New Orleans (New Orleans, La.): NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision, Southland Conference (Date TBA)
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6 thoughts on “Record Number of Colleges Add NCAA Football Teams In 2013

    • While I understand what you mean, I also would point out that “relevant” is a subjective term.

      IF you are referring to the BCS (or soon-to-be playoff), then you are probably right. At least in the grand scheme of things (assuming they don’t ruin someone’s strength of schedule).

      However, hopefully some of them can be “relevant” within their division and/or conference sooner, rather than later.

      I guess that only time will tell.

  1. I’m skeptical. I’m sure some of these schools will decide against it after a few seasons of empty seats and high cost for equipment, coaches and facilities. It would be interesting to track all of them and give an update at the end of each year (if you are inclined).

    As far as being significant, I don’t think any of them will be for 25 or 30 years. It seems like there are too many schools already with programs trying to break into the “significant” realm, like North Texas and Sam Houston State.

    But again, I’m skeptical. 🙂

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