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Utah Valley officially enters the WAC
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Utah Valley University is officially part of the Western Athletic Conference.

It is a basketball dominated WAC, but one that, for the first time in its sports program history, puts the Wolverines in an automatic qualifier for NCAA tournaments in all sports.

"Today, we are elated to place Wolverine athletics officially under the WAC banner," UVU President Matthew S. Holland said. "As members of a conference with such a strong and storied tradition, we will benefit academically even as we build new successes athletically — bringing a broad new enthusiasm to our campus and community. We are proud of our success and tenure in the Great West Conference and anticipate the momentum gained there will translate to future success in the WAC."

UVU began its move to AQ status in 2003. In 2009, UVU ended seven years of provisional status and was officially recognized as a full NCAA Division I member.

The 2013-14 WAC includes Idaho (all but football), New Mexico State, Seattle, Utah Valley University, CS Bakersfield, Chicago State, Missouri – Kansas City and UT-Pan American.

Vince Otoupal will begin his tenure as UVU's new director of athletics – the third in the school's athletic history – on July 15.

"We are excited for Utah Valley to be an official member of the WAC," WAC Commissioner Jeff Hurd said. "Utah Valley is the fastest-growing public university in the state of Utah and is projected to become the largest school in the state. UVU's upside and potential are energizing. The school has a strong academic foundation and state-of-the-art facilities that we hope to use for future WAC championships."

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