RICHMOND, Va. — Another college athletic association is threatening to pull a tournament out of North Carolina unless the state repeals HB2, however, University of North Carolina – Wilmington’s upcoming tournaments are spared from that decision.
The Colonial Athletic Association Council of Presidents and Athletic Directors voted Wednesday to move the 2017 CAA Women’s Golf Championship, scheduled for Southport in April 2017, unless the law is repealed or voided before Jan. 10 of that year.
The NCAA and ACC recently announced their decisions to pull championship games and tournament play from the Tar Heel State because of the legislation. The CAA last week had announced it was monitoring the situation.
“On behalf of its full member institutions, the conference will send a letter to the governor of North Carolina expressing its strong opposition to the discriminatory principles of the law adopted by HB2 and calling for its immediate repeal,” a release from the association on Friday states.
However, the leadership group did reaffirm its commitment to hold the 2016 CAA Volleyball Championship at the University of North Carolina – Wilmington in November.
“In accordance with CAA championship hosting policies, the Seahawks earned the right to host the championship based on winning the conference title a year ago,” the release states. “
In addition, Elon University and UNCW will be allowed to host any rounds of the 2016 CAA Men’s and Women’s Soccer Championships if their teams finish with records that would award them home games in the series.
In regard to UNCW, the baseball championship site was determined through a bid process and voted on by the conference’s Athletic Directors. The volleyball championship site was determined based on a new conference bylaw that awards the championship to the previous season’s regular-season champion or tournament champion if there is a tie for the regular-season title.
The CAA notes that its decision on Wednesday to keep immediately upcoming games where they were planned is similar to decisions made by the NCAA and other Division 1 conferences.
Though the threat of pulling the 2017 Women’s Golf Championship out of North Carolina looms, conference leadership took no action on the men’s and women’s tennis championships set for Elon University in April, nor the baseball championship set for UNCW in May.
Instead, the conference noted it will monitor the situation of HB2 and “revisit its position on the women’s golf championship and all scheduled on-campus North Carolina based championships during a Jan. 10, 2017 meeting of the CAA Council of Presidents.”
CAA Commissioner Joe D’Antonio supported the conference’s position, saying “diversity and inclusion are such important principles at all 10 of our full member institutions.”
“Our decisions express the desire of our conference to stand up against discriminatory practices, while also making sure that the student-athletes of the CAA, as well as all people that take part in our championships are provided with a tremendous experience in a fair and non-discriminatory environment,” D’Antonion said. “ Going forward we will continue to closely monitor all aspects of this situation and make additional future decisions with the best interests of our student-athletes, as well as with the commitment of our institutions to diversity and inclusion, in mind.”