Map of full NCAA Division II Independent schools

NCAA Division II independent schools are four-year institutions that compete in college athletics at the NCAA Division II 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

Division II was created in 1973, at a time when the NCAA included dozens of independent members, plus members of conferences who played as independents in one or more sports. The trend toward consolidating the NCAA membership into conferences began in the late 1970s, and within a decade the number of independent programs declined dramatically. The lists below include only the small number of programs still functioning on an independent basis in recent years.

Current members

Institution Location Founded Affiliation Enrollment Nickname Joined Colors Future
conference
University of Puerto Rico at Bayamón[a] Bayamón, Puerto Rico 1971 Public 3,022 Cowboys ?      
University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez[a] Mayagüez, Puerto Rico 1911 Public 12,126 Bulldogs ?    
University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras[a] San Juan, Puerto Rico 1903 Public 13,226 Gallitos &
Jerezanas
?    
Salem University[b] Salem, West Virginia 1888 Private
(For-profit)
991 Tigers 2010;
2016[c]
   
Notes
  1. ^ a b c Full member of the Liga Atlética Interuniversitaria de Puerto Rico.
  2. ^ For the 2023-24 athletic season, Salem entered into a non-conference scheduling agreement with the Mountain East Conference for baseball, men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s soccer, softball, and women’s volleyball.[1]
  3. ^ Salem left the Independent ranks after the 2012–13 school year; before re-joining in the 2016–17 school year.

Former members

This list is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items. (February 2024)
Institution Location Founded Affiliation Enrollment Nickname Joined Left Colors Current
conference
Bluefield State University[a] Bluefield, West Virginia 1895 Public
(HBCU)
1,246 Big Blue 2013 2023     Central (CIAA)
Emory & Henry College Emory, Virginia 1836 Private 1,250 Wasps 2021 2022     South Atlantic (SAC)
Oakland City University Oakland City, Indiana 1885 Private 2,350 Mighty Oaks 2006 2020       River States (RSC)[b]
Notes
  1. ^ Formerly known as Bluefield State College until 2023.
  2. ^ Currently an NAIA athletic conference

Men's sponsored sports by school

Departing members in pink.

School Baseball Basketball Cross
country
Soccer Tennis Track
& field
outdoor
Volleyball Wrestling Total
IND
sports
UPR Bayamón Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 5
UPR Mayagüez Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 6
UPR Río Piedras Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 5
Salem Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 7

Women's sponsored sports by school

Departing members in pink.

School Basketball Cross
country
Soccer Softball Tennis Track
& field
outdoor
Volleyball Total
IND
sports
UPR Bayamón Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 5
UPR Mayagüez Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 5
UPR Río Piedras Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 5
Salem Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY 7

Other sponsored sports by school

School Men Women
Swimming
& diving
Water
polo
Swimming
& diving
Water
polo
Salem CC WWPA CC WWPA

Baseball independents

See also: List of NCAA Division II baseball programs

Does not include all-sports independent teams that sponsor the sport (Salem), since they have been listed before.

Current members

Institution Location Nickname Primary
conference
Bluefield State University Bluefield, West Virginia Big Blue CIAA
Virginia State University Ettrick, Virginia Trojans CIAA

Football independents

See also: List of NCAA Division II football programs

Does not include all-sports independent teams that sponsor the sport, since they have been listed before. Shorter will move its football program to its full-time home of Conference Carolinas once that league begins sponsoring football in 2025.

Current members

Institution Location Nickname Primary
conference
Northeastern State University[2] Tahlequah, Oklahoma RiverHawks MIAA
Shorter University Rome, Georgia Hawks Carolinas

Soccer independents

See also: List of NCAA Division II men's soccer programs and List of NCAA Division II women's soccer programs

Does not include all-sports independent teams that sponsor the sport (UPR Bayamón and Salem men's soccer and UPR Bayamón, UPR Río Piedras and Salem women's soccer), since they have been listed before.

Current members

Institution Location Nickname Primary
conference
(M) (W)
Allen University Columbia, South Carolina Yellow Jackets SIAC Green tickY
Bluefield State University Bluefield, West Virginia Big Blue CIAA Green tickY
Edward Waters University Jacksonville, Florida Lady Tigers SIAC Green tickY
Shaw University Raleigh, North Carolina Bears CIAA Green tickY Green tickY
Virginia State University Ettrick, Virginia Trojans CIAA Green tickY Green tickY

Lacrosse independents

See also: List of NCAA Division II lacrosse programs

Does not include all-sports independent teams that sponsor the sport, since they have been listed before. Dominican (CA) will move their men's lacrosse program to the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference beginning in the 2025 season.[3]

Current members

Institution Location Nickname Primary
conference
(M) (W)
Dominican University of California San Rafael, California Penguins PacWest Green tickY Green tickY
Virginia State University Ettrick, Virginia Trojans CIAA Green tickY Green tickY

Wrestling independents

See also: List of NCAA Division II wrestling programs

Does not include all-sports independent teams that sponsor the sport (Salem and UPR Mayagüez), since they have been listed before.

Current members

Institution Location Nickname Primary
conference
American International College Springfield, Massachusetts Yellow Jackets Northeast-10
Grand Valley State University Allendale, Michigan Lakers GLIAC

Other sports

Golf

Does not include all-sports independent teams that sponsor the sport, since they have been listed before.

Institution Location Nickname Primary
conference
(M) (W)
Bluefield State University Bluefield, West Virginia Big Blue CIAA Green tickY
Daemen University Amherst, New York Wildcats ECC Green tickY
Thomas Jefferson University
(Jefferson)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Rams CACC Green tickY
Post University Waterbury, Connecticut Eagles CACC Green tickY
Roberts Wesleyan University Chili, New York Redhawks ECC Green tickY
St. Thomas Aquinas College Sparkill, New York Spartans ECC Green tickY

Rowing

Does not include all-sports independent teams that sponsor the sport, since they have been listed before.

Institution Location Nickname Primary
conference
Assumption University Worcester, Massachusetts Greyhounds Northeast-10
University of Charleston Charleston, West Virginia Golden Eagles MEC
Franklin Pierce University Rindge, New Hampshire Ravens Northeast-10
Thomas Jefferson University (Jefferson) Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Rams CACC
Mercyhurst University Erie, Pennsylvania Lakers PSAC

Swimming & diving

Does not include all-sports independent teams that sponsor the sport, since they have been listed before.

Institution Location Nickname Primary
conference
(M) (W)
Roberts Wesleyan University North Chili, New York Redhawks ECC Green tickY Green tickY

Tennis

Does not include all-sports independent teams that sponsor the sport (all of them in men's & women's tennis), since they have been listed before.

Institution Location Nickname Primary
conference
(M) (W)
Bluefield State University Bluefield, West Virginia Big Blue CIAA Green tickY
Colorado State University Pueblo Pueblo, Colorado ThunderWolves RMAC Green tickY
Johnson C. Smith University Charlotte, North Carolina Golden Bulls CIAA Green tickY
Shaw University Raleigh, North Carolina Bears CIAA Green tickY
Virginia State University Petersburg, Virginia Trojans CIAA Green tickY

Sports not sponsored by D-II

See also: List of NCAA Division II institutions with sports not in D-II

Institution Location Nickname Primary
conference
Sport
Barry University Miami Shores, Florida Buccaneers SSC[a] Beach volleyball
Bluefield State University Bluefield, West Virginia Big Blue CIAA Acrobatics & tumbling
Women's wrestling
California State University, Los Angeles Los Angeles, California Golden Eagles CCAA Beach volleyball
Carson–Newman University Jefferson City, Tennessee Eagles SAC Beach volleyball
Catawba College Salisbury, North Carolina Catawba Indians SAC Beach volleyball
Chaminade University of Honolulu Honolulu, Hawaii Silverswords PacWest Beach volleyball
Coker University Hartsville, South Carolina Cobras SAC Men's volleyball
Colorado Mesa University Grand Junction, Colorado Mavericks RMAC Beach volleyball
Concordia University–Irvine Irvine, California Eagles PacWest Beach volleyball
Eckerd College St. Petersburg, Florida Tritons SSC[a] Beach volleyball
Erskine College Due West, South Carolina Flying Fleet Carolinas Beach volleyball
Florida Southern College Lakeland, Florida Moccasins SSC[a] Beach volleyball
Hawaii Pacific University Honolulu, Hawaii Sharks PacWest Beach volleyball
Limestone University Gaffney, South Carolina Saints SAC Men's volleyball
Lincoln Memorial University Harrogate, Tennessee Railsplitters SAC Beach volleyball
Men's volleyball
Maryville University Town and Country, Missouri Saints GLVC[b] Men's volleyball
McKendree University Lebanon, Illinois Bearcats GLVC Beach volleyball
Missouri University of Science and Technology
(Missouri S&T)
Rolla, Missouri Miners GLVC[b] Men's volleyball
Oklahoma Christian University Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Eagles & Lady Eagles LSC Women's bowling
Palm Beach Atlantic University West Palm Beach, Florida Sailfish SSC[a] Beach volleyball
Saint Leo University St. Leo, Florida Lions SSC[a] Beach volleyball
Southwest Baptist University Bolivar, Missouri Bearcats GLVC Beach volleyball
Spring Hill College Mobile, Alabama Badgers SIAC Beach volleyball
University of Tampa Tampa, Florida Spartans SSC[a] Beach volleyball
Texas A&M University–Kingsville Kingsville, Texas Javelinas LSC Beach volleyball
Thomas More University Crestview Hills, Kentucky Saints G-MAC Men's volleyball
Tusculum University Tusculum, Tennessee Pioneers SAC Men's volleyball
Vanguard University Costa Mesa, California Lions PacWest Beach volleyball
Wayne State College Wayne, Nebraska Wildcats NSIC Beach volleyball
  1. ^ a b c d e f The Sunshine State Conference adds beach volleyball in the 2024–25 school year.
  2. ^ a b The Great Lakes Valley Conference adds men's volleyball in the 2025–26 school year.

See also

References

  1. ^ "MEC Announces 2023-24 Non-Conference Scheduling Agreement with Salem". mountaineast.org. 2023-08-11. Retrieved 2023-09-19.
  2. ^ "MIAA makes changes to Football lineup" (Press release). Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association. November 20, 2023. Retrieved November 20, 2023.
  3. ^ "Dominican University of California to Join RMAC Men's Lacrosse League" (Press release). Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference. November 20, 2023. Retrieved April 13, 2024.