Laurinburg, NC- St. Andrews University Director of Athletics Glenn Batten announced Thursday that the school will add men's and women's track and field as varsity sports beginning in the 2013-14 school year.
First year Knights head cross country coach Bill Cason will assume coaching responsibilities for the team.
"We're very excited about adding men's and women's track and field as our newest interscholastic sports," Batten said.
Coach Cason is very experienced in starting new programs as he started the track and field programs at UNC Wilmington and Guilford College. "This is a tremendous opportunity for us to enhance the athletic experience for our students while also strengthening our Athletic Department and institution. "I am very excited and proud to have the honor of re-establishing St. Andrews track and field programs," Cason said. "I feel it will be a tremendous benefit for the Knights cross country runners to be able to train and race year round. I anticipate a lot of interest from the very start. Recruiting will be focused on middle and long distance runners who will also run cross country."
"One of the great advantages that track and field competition offers is that our students will have the opportunity to advance to NAIA national championship competitions not just as teams, but as individuals," Cason says, "Our athletes will have the opportunity to compete against not only NAIA programs, but in high quality meets that include colleges and universities from NCAA Division I conferences including the ACC. SEC, C-USA and Sun Belt."
The St. Andrews track and field teams will compete in competitions during the spring semester. The sport is one of 15 sponsored by the Appalachian Athletic Conference.
Other schools sponsoring track and field with AAC affiliation are Bryan College (TN), Milligan College (TN), Tennessee Wesleyan, Montreat College (NC), SCAD (GA) and Union College (KY).