NCAA Division III independent schools are four-year institutions that compete in college athletics at the NCAA Division III level, but do not belong to an established athletic conference for a particular sport. These schools may however still compete as members of an athletic conference in other sports. A school may also be fully independent, and not belong to any athletic conference for any sport at all. The reason for independent status varies among institutions, but it is frequently because the school's primary athletic conference does not sponsor a particular sport.

Full independents

Departing members are highlighted in pink.

Current members

Institution Location Founded Affiliation Enrollment Nickname Joined Football? Future
primary
conference
Asbury University Wilmore, Kentucky 1890 Christian 1,054 Eagles 2021 No TBA
Bob Jones University Greenville, South Carolina 1927 Nondenominational 2,916 Bruins 2020 No TBA
Lyon College Batesville, Arkansas 1872 Presbyterian
(PCUSA)
700 Scots 2022 Yes SLIAC
Maranatha Baptist University Watertown, Wisconsin 1968 Baptist 1,169 Sabercats 2013 No None
Trinity Washington University[a] Washington, D.C. 1897 Catholic
(SNDdeN)
2,100 Tigers 2007;
2015[b]
No None
Notes
  1. ^ This institution is a women's college, therefore it does not compete in men's sports.
  2. ^ Trinity Washington left the Independent ranks after the 2011–12 school year; before re-joining, effective in the 2015–16 school year.


Former members

Institution Location Founded Affiliation Enrollment Nickname Joined Left Football? Current
primary
conference
Mississippi University for Women[a] Columbus, Mississippi 1884 Public 2,479 Owls 2017 2022 No St. Louis (SLIAC)
Nebraska Wesleyan University Lincoln, Nebraska 1887 United
Methodist
1,600 Prairie Wolves 1982[b] 2016[b] Yes American Rivers (ARC)
Warren Wilson College Swannanoa, North Carolina 1894 Presbyterian
(PCUSA)
650 Owls 2020 2022 No Coast to Coast (C2C)
Notes
  1. ^ MUW discontinued its athletics program after the 2002–03 school year.
  2. ^ a b Nebraska Wesleyan was also a member of the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) from 1969–70 to 2015–16, therefore it held dual membership with the NAIA and the NCAA.

Football

Departing members are highlighted in pink.

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Future conference
Eastern University Eagles St. Davids, Pennsylvania 1952 Private 3,300 MAC (2023)
Hilbert College Hawks Hamburg, New York 1957 Private 1,100

Field hockey

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Medaille College Mavericks Buffalo, New York 1937 Private 3,925 AMCC
Meredith College Avenging Angels Raleigh, North Carolina 1891 Private 1,990 USA South
Southern Virginia University Knights Buena Vista, Virginia 1867 Private 1,106 USA South

† - Women's college, therefore not competing in men's sports.

Golf

Men

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Christopher Newport University Captains Newport News, Virginia 1961 Public 5,186 Coast to Coast
University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire Blugolds Eau Claire 1916 Public 10,043 WIAC

Women

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Christopher Newport University Captains Newport News, Virginia 1961 Public 5,186 Coast to Coast
Mount Mary University Blue Angels Milwaukee, Wisconsin 1913 Private 1,209 Coast to Coast

† - Women's college, therefore not competing in men's sports.

Potential future independent

Hartford started a transition from NCAA Division I in 2021–22, and will join the D-III Commonwealth Coast Conference—which sponsors golf only for men—in July 2023.

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Future primary conference
University of Hartford Hawks West Hartford, Connecticut 1877 Private 6,792 Commonwealth Coast (2023)

Ice hockey

Further information: NCAA Division III independent schools (ice hockey)

Men

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Albertus Magnus College Falcons New Haven, Connecticut 1925 Private 1,961 GNAC
Anna Maria College Amcats Paxton, Massachusetts 1946 Private 1,500 GNAC
Rivier University Raiders Nashua, New Hampshire 1933 Private 2,520 GNAC
State University of New York at Canton Roos Canton, New York 1906 Public 3,205 NAC

Women

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Anna Maria College Amcats Paxton, Massachusetts 1946 Private 1,500 GNAC
Hilbert College Hawks Hamburg, New York 1957 Private
(Catholic)
1,100 AMCC
Rivier University Raiders Nashua, New Hampshire 1933 Private 2,520 GNAC
Worcester State University Lancers Worcester, Massachusetts 1874 Public 5,724 MASCAC

Lacrosse

Men

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Whittier College Poets Whittier, California 1887 Private 1,540 SCIAC

Rowing

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Gordon College Fighting Scots Wenham, Massachusetts 1889 Private 2,109 Commonwealth Coast
Nazareth College Golden Flyers Pittsford, New York 1924 Private 3,140 Empire 8


Swimming & diving

Men

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Coe College[a] Kohawks Cedar Rapids, Iowa 1851 Private 1,355 American Rivers
Gordon College[b] Fighting Scots Wenham, Massachusetts 1889 Private 2,109 Commonwealth Coast
Johns Hopkins University Blue Jays Baltimore, Maryland 1876 Private 20,174 Centennial
Loras College[a] Duhawks Dubuque, Iowa 1839 Private 1,550 American Rivers
Luther College[a] Norse Decorah, Iowa 1861 Lutheran 2,573 American Rivers
Nebraska Wesleyan University[a] Prairie Wolves Lincoln, Nebraska 1887 Private 1,600 American Rivers
Simpson College[a] Storm Indianola, Iowa 1860 Private 1,966 American Rivers
Southern Virginia University Knights Buena Vista, Virginia 1867 Private 1,106 USA South

Women

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Coe College[a] Kohawks Cedar Rapids, Iowa 1851 Private 1,355 American Rivers
Gordon College[b] Fighting Scots Wenham, Massachusetts 1889 Private 2,109 Commonwealth Coast
Johns Hopkins University Blue Jays Baltimore, Maryland 1876 Private 20,174 Centennial
Loras College[a] Duhawks Dubuque, Iowa 1839 Private 1,550 American Rivers
Luther College[a] Norse Decorah, Iowa 1861 Lutheran 2,573 American Rivers
Mills College[c] [d] Cyclones Oakland, California 1852 Private 1,345 Coast to Coast
Nebraska Wesleyan University[a] Prairie Wolves Lincoln, Nebraska 1887 Private 1,600 American Rivers
Simpson College[a] Storm Indianola, Iowa 1860 Private 1,966 American Rivers
Southern Virginia University Knights Buena Vista, Virginia 1867 Private 1,106 USA South

† - Women's college, therefore not competing in men's sports.

Notes
  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Coe College, Loras College, Luther College, Nebraska Wesleyan University, and Simpson College compete in an invitational held by the American Rivers Conference but it is not an official sport sponsored by the conference so the colleges are functional independents.
  2. ^ a b Gordon College compete in the New England Intercollegiate Swimming & Diving Association Championship which is not recognized by the NCAA therefore these colleges are considered independents.
  3. ^ Mills College will merge with Northeastern University on July 1, 2023 thus the athletics department will be discontinued.
  4. ^ Mills College competes in the Liberal Arts Conference Championship which is not recognized by the NCAA therefore Mills is considered an independent.

Tennis

Men

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Cairn University Highlanders Langhorne, Pennsylvania 1913 Private 2,200 CSAC
State University of New York at Oswego Lakers Oswego, New York 1861 Public 8,909 SUNYAC

Track & field (indoor)

Men

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Alfred State College Pioneers Alfred, New York 1908 Private 3,500 AMCC
Gwynedd Mercy University Griffins Gwynedd Valley, Pennsylvania 1948 Private 2,017 Atlantic East
Immaculata University Mighty Macs Immaculata, Pennsylvania 1940 Private 1,043 Atlantic East
Marywood University Pacers Scranton, Pennsylvania 1915 Private 2,470 Atlantic East
McMurry University War Hawks Abilene, Texas 1923 Private 1,430 ASC
Wentworth Institute of Technology Leopards Boston, Massachusetts 1904 Private 3,728 Commonwealth Coast

Women

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Alfred State College Pioneers Alfred, New York 1908 Private 3,500 AMCC
Gwynedd Mercy University Griffins Gwynedd Valley, Pennsylvania 1948 Private 2,017 Atlantic East
Immaculata University Mighty Macs Immaculata, Pennsylvania 1940 Private 1,043 Atlantic East
Marywood University Pacers Scranton, Pennsylvania 1915 Private 2,470 Atlantic East
McMurry University War Hawks Abilene, Texas 1923 Private 1,430 ASC
Wentworth Institute of Technology Leopards Boston, Massachusetts 1904 Private 3,728 Commonwealth Coast

Track & field (outdoor)

Men

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Wentworth Institute of Technology[a] Leopards Boston, Massachusetts 1904 Private 3,728 Commonwealth Coast
Notes
  1. ^ Wentworth Institute of Technologycompetes in the Commonwealth Coast Conference Championship which is not recognized as a varsity sport by the conference thus Wentworth Tech is considered an independent.

Volleyball (indoor)

Men

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Pratt Institute Cannoneers Brooklyn, New York 1877 Private 4,829 Coast to Coast
University of California, Santa Cruz Banana Slugs Santa Cruz, California 1965 Public 19,700 Coast to Coast

Wrestling

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Hunter College Hawks New York City, New York 1870 Public 21,309 CUNYAC
Keystone College Giants La Plume, Pennsylvania 1868 Private 1,600 CSAC

Emerging sports for women

Acrobatics & tumbling

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
East Texas Baptist University Tigers Marshall, Texas 1912 Private 1,714 ASC
University of Mary Hardin–Baylor Crusaders Belton, Texas 1845 Private 2,713 ASC

Rugby

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Colby-Sawyer College Chargers New London, New Hampshire 1837 Private 1,043 GNAC
Marywood University Pacers Scranton, Pennsylvania 1915 Private 2,470 Atlantic East
Norwich University Cadets Northfield, Vermont 1819 Military 2,300 GNAC
University of New England Nor'easters Biddeford, Maine 1831 Private 8,085 Commonwealth Coast

Triathlon

Institution Team Location Founded Type Enrollment Primary conference
Central College Dutch Pella, Iowa 1853 Private 1,575 American Rivers
Coe College Kohawks Cedar Rapids, Iowa 1851 Private 1,355 American Rivers
Millikin University Big Blue Decatur, Illinois 1901 Private 2,118 CCIW
North Central College Cardinals Naperville, Illinois 1861 Private 2,490 CCIW

See also