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Lone Star Conference History

Long known as a leader in intercollegiate athletics, the Lone Star Conference™ (LSC) is an innovative athletics conference that aims to provide a superior competitive experience for member institutions and to allow for comprehensive development of student-athletes through academic services and life skills programming.  The LSC continues to build upon its proud history while aiming to be recognized as the premier NCAA Division II conference in the nation.

The league’s mission is to foster student participation and success among member institutions in NCAA Division II intercollegiate athletics as an integral part of each institution’s total educational program. The LSC shall pursue student-athlete development with highest regard to the principles of academic excellence, graduation success, sportsmanship, ethical conduct, resourcefulness, community service, gender equity, and diversity.

The LSC - founded on April 25, 1931 - has developed from a five-team conference of Texas-based schools to an 18-member league that spans four states (Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Arkansas). With 18 members, the LSC is the largest conference in NCAA Division II.

The league continues to assist its member institutions in the maintenance of intercollegiate athletic programs that are compatible with the highest standards of education and competitive sports.

Throughout the league's 90-year history, various institutions have competed under the LSC banner. Today, only Texas A&M-Commerce (then East Texas State) remains from the original group formed in 1931 when North Texas State, Southwest Texas State, Sam Houston State and Stephen F. Austin withdrew from the old Texas Intercollegiate Athletic Association.

The membership alignment has changed over the years, with current members added from 1954 to 2019. Texas A&M-Kingsville (formerly Texas A&I) joined in 1954, and Angelo State in 1968.

Conference membership remained within the Texas borders until 1984 when Eastern New Mexico was admitted. Since then, the LSC has included members from Arkansas and Oklahoma.

Cameron (1988, 1996) was added near the outset of an expansion phase, while Texas Woman's (1989) and previous member West Texas A&M (1986, 1993) joined the league soon after.

Midwestern State was admitted early in 1995. Harding reconnected with the league as an affiliate member in track and field from 2013-15, and McMurry was an affiliate member in indoor and outdoor track and field and football in 2014.

In 2016, UT Permian Basin and Western New Mexico were added to the league, while Lubbock Christian joined as an affiliate member in indoor and outdoor track and field that same year.  Oklahoma Panhandle State was an affiliate member in football in 2016.

DBU was an affiliate member in indoor and outdoor track and field in 2019.

On July 1, 2019, the LSC added eight schools as DBU, Lubbock Christian, Oklahoma Christian, St. Edward’s, St. Mary’s, Texas A&M International, Arkansas-Fort Smith and UT Tyler joined the league.

Past members of the LSC include Trinity, Houston, Lamar, Howard Payne, Sul Ross State, McMurry, Harding, Ouachita Baptist, Central Oklahoma, East Central (Okla.), Northeastern State (Okla.), Southeastern Oklahoma, Southwestern Oklahoma, Abilene Christian, Incarnate Word, and Tarleton State.

While the LSC has maintained a long-standing tradition of competitive athletic programs for its members, many teams and individuals have gone on to distinguish themselves on the national stage. Entering 2021-22, LSC member institutions have collected 76 NCAA team national championships since the league joined the Division II membership in 1981.

During the 2021-22 academic year, the LSC is celebrating its 90th anniversary recognizing the incredible achievements of student-athletes, coaches and administrators that have made the league one of the oldest and most respected collegiate athletic conferences in Division II.

The LSC conducts conference championships in 18 sports (nine men and nine women). Men's championships include football, soccer, cross country, basketball, baseball, indoor track and field, outdoor track and field, golf, and tennis. Women's titles are determined in volleyball, soccer, cross country, basketball, softball, indoor track and field, outdoor track and field, tennis, and golf.

The conference office is in Richardson, Texas, a northern suburb of Dallas. Jay Poerner serves as Commissioner, with assistance from Melanie Robotham (Championships and Communications), Danielle Anderson (Compliance and Internal Operations), Brandon Tripp (Digital Media and Communications) and Christy Martiny (Business).

Updated 7/16/21