|Formerly||Montana Collegiate Conference (1920-35)|
|No. of teams||9 (6 full, 3 associate)|
|Region||Western United States|
The Frontier Conference is a college athletic conference affiliated with the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA). The conference was founded in 1934. Member institutions are located in the northwestern United States, in the states of Idaho, Montana, and Oregon.
The Montana Small College Conference (MSCC) was established in 1934 by the five smaller schools (Montana Technological University, the University of Montana Western, Montana State University–Northern, Intermountain Union College and Billings Polytechnic Institute) in the state. After a few seasons, the MSCC was renamed as the Montana Collegiate Conference (MCC) in 1936, with the additions of Montana State University Billings and Carroll College joining, as well as the merger of International Union and Billings Poly to become Rocky Mountain College. After nearly three decades, the conference reestablished itself under its current moniker in November 1966, containing the same six schools until 1974. The University of Providence (then the College of Great Falls) joined that year, however would only stay for a decade. MSU Billings left for the first incarnation of the Great Northwest Athletic Conference in 1988, leaving the Frontier at five members for another decade. The conference opened up outside of Montana for the first time in 1998, with schools from Idaho (Lewis–Clark State College) and Utah (Westminster College) joining. Great Falls re-joined in 1999. Dickinson State University joined in 2012, only to leave in 2014 to join the North Star Athletic Association (NSAA). Westminster (Utah) left for the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II ranks and re-joined the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) in 2015. Lewis–Clark State left for the Cascade Collegiate Conference as a full member in 2020.
The Frontier Conference has 5 full members with football, 1 full member without football, and 3 football-only affiliate members. University of Providence does not field a football team. College of Idaho, Eastern Oregon and Southern Oregon are the football-only affiliates.
The Frontier currently has six full members, half are private schools:
|Carroll College||Helena, Montana||1909||Catholic
(Diocese of Helena)
|Montana State University–Northern||Havre, Montana||1929||Public[b]||1,207||Lights &
|Montana Technological University||Butte, Montana||1889||Public[b]||2,694||Orediggers||1934|
|University of Montana Western||Dillon, Montana||1893||Public[b]||1,336||Bulldogs||1934|
|University of Providence[c]||Great Falls, Montana||1932||Catholic
|Rocky Mountain College[e]||Billings, Montana||1878||various[f]||894||Battlin' Bears||1936|
The Frontier currently has three affiliate members, only one of them is a private school:
|College of Idaho||Caldwell, Idaho||1891||Presbyterian
|Eastern Oregon University||La Grande, Oregon||1929||Public||3,743||Mountaineers||2008|
|Southern Oregon University||Ashland, Oregon||1872||5,696||Raiders||2012|
The Frontier will have one new affiliate member, which will also be a private school:
|Arizona Christian University||Glendale, Arizona||1960||Nondenominational||820||Firestorm||2023||football||Golden State (GSAC)|
The Frontier had four former full members, only one was a private school:
|Dickinson State University||Dickinson, North Dakota||1918||Public||2,572||Blue Hawks||2012||2014||North Star (NSAA)|
|Lewis–Clark State College||Lewiston, Idaho||1893||4,500||Warriors &
|Eastern Montana College[c]||Billings, Montana||1927||4,600||Yellowjackets||1933||1980||various[e]||Great Northwest (GNAC)[d]|
|Westminster College||Salt Lake City, Utah||1875||Nonsectarian||3,108||Griffins||1998||2015||Rocky Mountain (RMAC)[d]|
Full member (all sports) Full member (non-football) Associate member (football-only)
The Frontier Conference sponsors athletic competition in men's and women's basketball, men's and women's cross country, men's football, men's and women's indoor and outdoor track and women's volleyball.
Montana Western won the NAIA national title in Division I Women's basketball, in 2019.
Rocky Mountain won the national title in men's basketball, NAIA Division I, in 2009.
Montana State-Northern won the national title in women's basketball, NAIA Division II, in 1993.
Carroll reached the semi-finals in men's basketball in 2005, as did Lewis-Clark State in women's basketball in 2001.
Carroll has won the NAIA national championship six times: four straight, from 2002 to 2005, also in 2007 and 2010, and has been runner-up twice.
Southern Oregon won the NAIA national championship in the 2014 season.
Montana Tech was the national runner-up in 1996.
Montana State-Northern has won six wrestling titles: 1991, 1992, 1998-2000, 2004, and was runner-up in 1990, 1993, and 2002.
Montana Western was co-champion in 1994.
In 2014, the University of Great Falls was second and Montana State-Northern took third at the NAIA national wrestling championship.
College of Great Falls (now University of Providence) was the 1973 Men's NAIA National Bowling Champion.