Newman gains full member status in country’s top NCAA DII conference


Newman University was officially accepted as a full member of the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) on July 1, 2022. After spending three seasons as associate members of the conference, the Newman Jets and Rogers State University as new additions to the MIAA, joining 12 other member institutions.

Newman Director of Athletics Joanna Pryor said the news was the culmination of a lot of effort and a long-held dream.

“Membership into the MIAA has been something that Newman University Athletics has had an interest in for a decade. We are extremely honored and excited to be accepted into full membership of the MIAA. Our coaches and student-athletes have worked very hard for this over the past last three years. We are up for the challenge and ready to represent Newman University and the MIAA both on and off the field.”

After a vote by member presidents in June, the Jets were accepted to full membership.

Newman is MIAA’s ONLY private institution 

President Kathleen Jagger believes the MIAA provides challenges and great opportunity for the university. “Newman is proud and excited to become a full member of the Division II MIAA conference, one in which striving for excellence both on and off the field, court, or other performance location is expected. “Although we are the only private school in the conference, we welcome the competition from other larger conference schools, and are confident we can live up to the MIAA conference standards.”

“This opportunity is consistent with one of the primary focuses of our new strategic plan, providing an exceptional student experience to foster student success. Since nearly 40% of our undergraduate students are intercollegiate athletes, the athletic experience constitutes a major emphasis for many of our students in the degree of difference they experience,” Jagger said.

She added, “Newman is grateful for the support of the MIAA administration, Mike Racy and his staff, and for the thoughtful consideration given us by leadership of other conference schools.” Racy is the MIAA commissioner.

MIAA Commissioner Perspective

“The MIAA CEO Council’s action (in June) culminated two years of study and discussion about membership and the strategic direction of the MIAA as the preeminent regional conference in NCAA Division II,” said Racy.

“Newman’s and Rogers State’s geographic fit for current MIAA members, their broad sports offerings and our shared philosophy and values of NCAA Division II intercollegiate athletics make both institutions great additions to the MIAA family. We are excited to welcome NU and RSU as new members, and to identify Wichita and Tulsa as new communities with MIAA institutions.”

Newman’s MIAA connection

Fourteen Newman sports participate for MIAA championships. Women’s bowling will participate as an associate member of the Great Lakes Valley Conference.

The Jets have competed as an associate member in MIAA wrestling since 2013. Thirteen more sports began competing in the MIAA in 2019-20. 

The MIAA is one of the nation’s oldest conferences and one of the most successful in NCAA Division II. The conference dates all the way back to 1912. The MIAA has its own streaming network called The MIAA Network.