|Missouri Valley Conference|
|MVC, The Valley|
|Members||10 (12 in 2022)|
|Region||Midwestern United States|
|Headquarters||St. Louis, Missouri|
|Commissioner||Jeff Jackson (since 2021)|
The Missouri Valley Conference (also called MVC or simply "The Valley") is the third-oldest collegiate athletic conference in the United States. Currently, its members are located in the midwestern United States.
The MVC was established in 1907 as the Missouri Valley Intercollegiate Athletic Association or MVIAA, 12 years after the Big Ten, the only Division I conference that is older. It is the third oldest college athletic conference in the United States, after the Big Ten Conference and the NCAA Division III Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA). The MVIAA split and most of the larger schools formed a conference that retained the MVIAA name and ultimately became the Big Eight Conference in 1928. The smaller MVIAA schools (Drake, Grinnell and Washington University in St. Louis), plus Oklahoma A&M (now Oklahoma State University–Stillwater, which joined the Big Eight in 1957), were joined by Creighton to form the MVC, which retained the old MVIAA's administrative staff. The Big Eight merged with four Texas schools of the Southwest Conference to form the Big 12 Conference in 1996.
To this day, it has never been definitively established which conference was the original and which was the spinoff, though the Big Eight would go on to become the more prestigious of the two. During the Big Eight's run, both conferences claimed 1907 as their founding date, and the same history through 1927.
MVC teams held a 74–27 non-conference record during the 2006–07 college basketball season, including a record of 44–1 at home. The Valley finished in the top six of the RPI and ahead of a BCS conference for the second consecutive year, while also garnering multiple NCAA bids for the ninth straight year and 12th of 14.
The MVC has not sponsored football since 1985, when it was a hybrid I-A/I-AA (now FBS and FCS, respectively) conference. However, five members have football programs in the Missouri Valley Football Conference (MVFC) (known as the Gateway from 1985 to 2008) of Division I FCS, and two others compete in another FCS conference, the Pioneer Football League. The Missouri Valley Conference shares its name with the MVFC, and all three conferences operate from the same headquarters complex in St. Louis; however, the three are separate administratively.
After weeks of speculation, Wichita State announced on April 7, 2017, that it would leave the conference to join the American Athletic Conference starting with the 2017–18 season. The conference announced it extended an invitation to Valparaiso University on May 9, 2017; and on May 25, the MVC announced that Valparaiso would officially join the following July 1.
The most recent changes to the core MVC membership were announced during the 2021–22 school year. On September 28, 2021, the MVC and Belmont University jointly announced that the school would leave the Ohio Valley Conference for the MVC effective July 1, 2022. Then, on November 16, Loyola University Chicago announced it would leave the MVC at the same time, joining the Atlantic 10 Conference. On the same day Loyola announced its departure, CBS Sports reported that the MVC was actively pursuing further expansion, having entered into talks with the University of Missouri–Kansas City (known athletically as Kansas City), Murray State University, and the University of Texas at Arlington (UT Arlington). The report indicated that the latter two were considered the strongest candidates, but that all three were likely to receive invitations in the coming months. On January 7, 2022, the MVC announced that Murray State would officially join the conference on July 1 of that year. UT Arlington would soon remove itself from the list of candidates by announcing a 2022 move to the Western Athletic Conference.
Shortly before Murray State was officially announced as an incoming MVC member, Matt Brown of the Extra Points college sports blog reported that the MVC was also in membership discussions with the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC), a current member of the Horizon League. On the same weekend that Murray State's arrival was officially announced, MVC officials made a site visit to UIC. Brown's sources indicated that an invitation to UIC was likely. Brown noted that with the MVC losing Loyola, league officials believed that maintaining a presence in the city was a top priority, stating (emphasis in original):
Throughout this process, multiple administrators at MVC institution stressed the importance of getting access to new urban areas to recruit more students, not just athletes. With so many schools depending heavily on Chicago, and especially Chicago's suburbs, for enrollment, continuing to have a presence in the city was seen as a major priority.
On January 22, 2021, Matt Norlander of CBSSports.com reported that UIC's July 2022 entry to the MVC was "a done deal", with his sources indicating that the MVC wanted to announce the move before the Conference Commissioners Association held its annual meeting in Naples, Florida in early February. UIC's entry was officially announced on January 26.
Departing members are highlighted in red.
|Bradley University||Peoria, Illinois||1897||1948,
|Drake University||Des Moines, Iowa||1881||1907,
|University of Evansville||Evansville, Indiana||1854||1994||Private||2,526||Purple Aces|
|Illinois State University||Normal, Illinois||1857||1981||Public||20,706||Redbirds|
|Indiana State University||Terre Haute, Indiana||1865||1976[b]||Public||13,584||Sycamores|
|Loyola University Chicago||Chicago, Illinois||1870||2013||Private||16,437||Ramblers|
|Missouri State University||Springfield, Missouri||1905||1990||Public||26,000 ||Bears
|University of Northern Iowa||Cedar Falls, Iowa||1876||1991||Public||12,273||Panthers|
|Southern Illinois University||Carbondale, Illinois||1869||1975||Public||11,695||Salukis|
|Valparaiso University||Valparaiso, Indiana||1859||2017[c]||Private||4,500||Beacons[d]|
|Belmont University||Nashville, Tennessee||1890||2022||Private||8,700||Bruins||OVC|
|University of Illinois Chicago||Chicago, Illinois||1946||Public||30,539||Flames||Horizon|
|Murray State University||Murray, Kentucky||1922||10,495||Racers||OVC|
Note: In the case of spring sports, the year of joining is the calendar year before the start of competition.
|University of Arkansas at Little Rock||Little Rock, Arkansas||1927||2013–14||Public||13,167||Trojans||Sun Belt
(OVC in 2022)
|Dallas Baptist University||Dallas, Texas||1898||2013–14||Private||5,545||Patriots||Lone Star
(NCAA Division II)
|Southern Illinois University Edwardsville||Edwardsville, Illinois||1957||2021–22[a]||Public||14,000||Cougars||OVC||men's soccer|
|Stony Brook University[b]||Stony Brook, New York||1957||2016–17||Public||24,594||Seawolves||America East||women's tennis|
|Butler University||Indianapolis, Indiana||1855||1932||1934||Private||4,667||Bulldogs||Big East|
|University of Cincinnati||Cincinnati, Ohio||1819||1957||1970||Public||42,421||Bearcats||The American|
(Big 12 in 2023)
|Creighton University||Omaha, Nebraska||1878||1928,
|University of Detroit[b]||Detroit, Michigan||1877||1949||1956||Private||5,450||Titans||Horizon|
|Grinnell College||Grinnell, Iowa||1846||1918||1939||Private||1,688||Pioneers||Midwest|
(NCAA Division III)
|University of Houston||Houston, Texas||1927||1951||1959||Public||39,820||Cougars||The American|
(Big 12 in 2023)
|University of Iowa||Iowa City, Iowa||1847||1907||1908||Public||30,328||Hawkeyes||Big Ten|
|Iowa State College[c]||Ames, Iowa||1858||1907||1928||Public||29,887||Cyclones||Big 12|
|University of Kansas||Lawrence, Kansas||1865||1907||1928||Public||29,462||Jayhawks||Big 12|
|Kansas State College[d]||Manhattan, Kansas||1863||1913||1928||Public||23,863||Wildcats||Big 12|
|University of Louisville||Louisville, Kentucky||1798||1963[e]||1975||Public||19,743||Cardinals||ACC|
|Memphis State University[f]||Memphis, Tennessee||1912||1968||1973||Public||23,031||Tigers||The American|
|University of Missouri||Columbia, Missouri||1839||1907||1928||Public||33,805||Tigers||SEC|
|University of Nebraska||Lincoln, Nebraska||1869||1907,
|New Mexico State University[g]||Las Cruces, New Mexico||1888||1970||1983||Public||18,497||Aggies||WAC|
(C-USA in 2023)
|North Texas State University[h]||Denton, Texas||1890||1957||1975||Public||35,694||Mean Green||C-USA|
(The American in 2023)
|University of Oklahoma||Norman, Oklahoma||1890||1919||1928||Public||30,303||Sooners||Big 12|
(SEC in 2025)
|Oklahoma A&M College[i]||Stillwater, Oklahoma||1890||1925||1956||Public||21,419||Aggies/Cowboys[j]||Big 12|
|Saint Louis University||St. Louis, Missouri||1818||1937||1974||Private||13,785||Billikens||Atlantic 10|
|University of Tulsa||Tulsa, Oklahoma||1894||1935||1996||Private||4,165||Golden Hurricane||The American|
|Washburn University||Topeka, Kansas||1865||1935||1942||Public||7,303||Ichabods||MIAA|
(NCAA Division II)
|Washington University in St. Louis||St. Louis, Missouri||1853||1907||1942||Private||14,070||Bears||UAA|
(NCAA Division III)
|West Texas State University[k]||Canyon, Texas||1910||1972||1986||Public||7,843||Buffaloes||Lone Star|
(NCAA Division II)
|Wichita State University||Wichita, Kansas||1895||1949||2017||Public||14,495||Shockers||The American|
This list does not include current full member Valparaiso. As noted above, the Beacons, then known as the Crusaders, played women's soccer in the MVC from the 1996 to 1998 fall seasons (1996–97 to 1998–99 school years).
|University of Arkansas at Little Rock||Little Rock, Arkansas||1927||1998–99||1999–2000||Public||13,167||Trojans||Sun Belt
(OVC in 2022)
|Belmont University||Nashville, Tennessee||1890||2000–01||2000–01||Private||6,374||Bruins||OVC
(SoCon for men's soccer;
joining MVC as full member in 2022)
|University of Central Arkansas||Conway, Arkansas||1907||2010–11||2018–19||Public||13,863||Bears||ASUN||men's soccer|
|Drury University||Springfield, Missouri||1873||1999–2000||2004–05||Private||5,474||Panthers||GLVC
(NCAA Division II)
|Eastern Illinois University||Charleston, Illinois||1895||1996–97||2010–11||Public||11,651||Panthers||OVC
(Summit for men's soccer)
|University of Hartford||Hartford, Connecticut||1877||2014–15||2015–16||Private||6,935||Hawks||America East[a]||men's tennis[b]|
|University of Maryland, Baltimore County||Catonsville, Maryland||1966||2014–15||2015–16||Public||13,908||Retrievers||America East||men's tennis[c]|
|Southern Methodist University||University Park, Texas||1911||2000–01||2004–05||Private||12,000||Mustangs||The American||men's soccer|
|Stony Brook University||Stony Brook, New York||1957||2014–15||2016–17||Public||24,594||Seawolves||America East
(CAA in 2022)
|Texas Christian University||Fort Worth, Texas||1873||2000–01||2000–01||Private||9,518||Horned Frogs||Big 12||men's soccer[e]|
|University of Tulsa[f]||Tulsa, Oklahoma||1894||2000–01||2004–05||Private||4,165||Golden Hurricane||The American||men's soccer|
|Vanderbilt University||Nashville, Tennessee||1873||1997–98||2005–06||Private||12,714||Commodores||SEC||men's soccer[g]|
|Western Kentucky University||Bowling Green, Kentucky||1906||1997–98||2007–08||Public||21,048||Hilltoppers||C-USA||men's soccer[h]|
Full members (non-football) (Full members) Assoc. members (football only) Assoc. member (other sports)
The Missouri Valley Conference sponsors championship competition in seven men's and ten women's NCAA sanctioned sports. Dallas Baptist is an affiliate for baseball, Little Rock is an affiliate for swimming and diving, and Stony Brook is an affiliate in women's tennis.
The most recent change to the roster of sports was the dropping of men's tennis after the 2016–17 school year due to a lack of participating teams. Two of the four full conference members that sponsored the sport in that season no longer play men's tennis in the MVC. Southern Illinois dropped both men's and women's tennis, and Wichita State joined the American Athletic Conference. Affiliate member Stony Brook dropped men's tennis after the 2016–17 season. The two remaining MVC men's tennis schools from 2016 to 2017, Drake and Illinois State, joined the Summit League for that sport, and incoming MVC member Valparaiso also joined the Summit League in men's tennis.
|Swimming & Diving||
|Track and field (indoor)||
|Track and field (outdoor)||
|Golf||Soccer||Track & Field
|Track & Field
Men's varsity sports not sponsored by the Missouri Valley Conference which are played by Valley schools:
Future members Belmont, Murray State, and UIC in gray; departing member Loyola in pink.
|School||Football||Rifle[a]||Swimming & Diving||Tennis||Volleyball||Wrestling|
|Golf||Soccer||Softball||Swimming||Tennis||Track & Field
|Track & Field
Women's varsity sports not sponsored by the Missouri Valley Conference which are played by Valley schools:
|School||Soccer stadium||Capacity||Basketball arena||Capacity||Softball field||Capacity||Baseball field||Capacity|
|Belmont||E. S. Rose Park||300||Curb Event Center||5,085||Cheryl Holt Field||300||E. S. Rose Park||750|
|Bradley||Shea Stadium||3,800||Peoria Civic Center (men)
Renaissance Coliseum (women)
|Petersen Hotels Field||1,000||Dozer Park||7,500|
|Drake||James W. Cownie Soccer Complex||2,000||Knapp Center||7,152||Ron Buel Field||500||Non-baseball school|
|Evansville||Arad McCutchan Stadium||2,500||Ford Center (men)
Meeks Family Fieldhouse (women)
|James & Dorothy
|650||Charles H. Braun Stadium||1,200|
|UIC||Flames Field||1,000||Credit Union 1 Arena||8,000||Flames Field||500||Curtis Granderson Stadium||2,000|
|Illinois State||Adelaide Street Field||1,000||Redbird Arena||10,200||Marian Kneer
|1,050||Duffy Bass Field||1,200|
|Indiana State||Non-soccer school||Hulman Center||10,200||Price Field At
Eleanor Forsythe St. John
|Loyola Chicago||Loyola Soccer Park||500||Joseph J. Gentile Arena||4,963||Loyola Softball Park||500||Non-baseball school|
|Missouri State||Betty and Bobby Allison South Stadium||1,000||JQH Arena||11,000||Killian Softball Stadium||1,200||Hammons Field||7,986|
|Murray State||Cutchin Field||250||CFSB Center||8,600||Racer Field||500||Johnny Reagan Field||800|
|UNI||Cedar Valley Soccer Complex||N/A||McLeod Center||7,018||Robinson-Dresser
|Southern Illinois||Lew Hartzog Complex||500||Banterra Center||8,339||Charlotte West Stadium||502||Itchy Jones Stadium||2,000|
|Valparaiso||Brown Field||5,000||Athletics–Recreation Center||5,000||Valpo Softball Complex||N/A||Emory G. Bauer Field||500|
|Dallas Baptist||Baseball-only member||Horner Ballpark||2,000|
|SIU Edwardsville||Ralph Korte Stadium||4,000||Men's soccer-only member|
The Missouri Valley Conference Men's Basketball Tournament is often referred to as Arch Madness, in reference to the Gateway Arch at the tournament's present location of St. Louis, Missouri, and a play on "March Madness". The women's tournament is currently promoted as Hoops in the Heartland.
|Season||Men's Champion||Women's Champion|
|1977||Southern Illinois||No Tournament|
|1979||Indiana State||No Tournament|
|1983||Illinois State||Illinois State|
|1985||Wichita State||No Tournament|
|1987||Wichita State||Southern Illinois|
|1990||Illinois State||Southern Illinois|
|1992||Missouri State||Missouri State|
|1993||Southern Illinois||Missouri State|
|1994||Southern Illinois||Missouri State|
|1997||Illinois State||Illinois State|
|1998||Illinois State||Illinois State|
|2001||Indiana State||Missouri State|
|2006||Southern Illinois||Missouri State|
|2014||Wichita State||Wichita State|
|2020||Bradley||Canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic|
NB: Missouri State was known as Southwest Missouri State until August 2005.
National team titles by institution
School – Number – NCAA Championships
NCAA Championships as of March 2013
(*-Titles won by schools in Division II/College Division prior to their moving to Division I in the late 1960s or early 1970s.)
Football poll, Helms and AIAW titles are not included in the NCAA Championship count.
Men's basketball attendance
The Valley is well known for having some of the most dedicated fanbases in all of college basketball, with several members regularly selling out their large arenas on a nightly basis throughout the year. Former member (Creighton) had the sixth highest attendance for Division I in 2012–13 while Bradley, Illinois State, Missouri State, and Indiana State were all among the NCAA's top 100 teams in home attendance.
In 2010–11, 2011–12, and 2012–13, the Valley maintained its position as the eighth ranked conference in average attendance.
The Valley made history in March 2007 with record attendance for four days at St. Louis' Scottrade Center as 85,074 fans turned out to watch the five sessions of the tournament. The two sellout crowds of 22,612 for the semifinals and final of the 2007 State Farm Tournament set an all-time attendance record for basketball at the arena and also gave The Valley the distinction of having the largest championship crowd for any of the 30 NCAA conference tournaments in 2007.
Football champions by year
Since at least 1993, the MVC has produced an in-house package of sports as part of the MVC Network. Since 1996, these telecasts have produced, in part, by Bally Sports Midwest (formally Fox Sports Midwest). These games are distributed to regional sports networks including Bally Sports Midwest, Bally Sports Kansas City, Bally Sports Indiana and NBC Sports Chicago. Until the 2020-21 season, these telecasts also aired on Fox College Sports. Outside of regional networks these telecasts were also available on ESPN3 until the 2018-19 season. These telecasts are now available on ESPN+. The MVC Network is home to the first two rounds of Arch Madness, the nickname for the MVC men's basketball tournament.