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Old Dominion Athletic Conference
DivisionDivision III
Members14 full (15 in 2022), 1 associate
Sports fielded
  • 24
    • men's: 11
    • women's: 13
RegionSouth Atlantic
Former namesVirginia College Conference
HeadquartersForest, Virginia
CommissionerBrad Bankston

The Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) is an NCAA Division III athletic conference. Of its 14 member schools, all but one are located in Virginia; the other full member is in North Carolina. The conference also has two associate members in North Carolina and Virginia


Old Dominion Athletic Conference
Location of ODAC members:
departing, and
ODAC logo from 1976 to 2010
ODAC logo from 1976 to 2010

The conference was founded in May 1975 as the Virginia College Conference.[1] On January 1, 1976, the name was changed to the Old Dominion Athletic Conference. The 1976–77 season was the first in which championships were offered. In 1982–83, women's sports were added. In 1981, Catholic University joined the conference after leaving Division I's Colonial Athletic Association. In 1988, Virginia Wesleyan was added as a member, and, in 1990, Guilford became the first member located outside D.C. and Virginia. Maryville College was an all-sports member in the 1980s. In 1989 Catholic left the conference to become a charter member of the Capital Athletic Conference, returning in 1999 as a football-only member.[2] The next school to leave the conference was Mary Baldwin College, which left in 1999 to join the Atlantic Women's Colleges Conference.

In 2010 the ODAC announced the addition of Shenandoah University to its full-time membership, with its first full year of involvement during the 2012–13 academic year.[3]

The league office moved its physical location from Salem, Virginia, to Forest, Virginia, just outside centrally located Lynchburg, and contracted with Jim Ward Design for its new marks.[4]

On March 3, 2015, Sweet Briar College announced it was to close (cease operations) at the end of the 2015 summer session.[5] However, on June 20, 2015, the Virginia Attorney General announced a mediation agreement that will keep Sweet Briar College open for the 2015–16 academic year.[6] Sweet Briar reactivated its sports teams in the 2015-16 season and remained a full member of the ODAC.

On September 29, 2015, it was announced that Catholic University would withdraw in 2017 as associate member to join the new football league at the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference.[7]

In June 2017, it was announced that Ferrum College would become the 15th full-time member of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference after it moved from the USA South Conference.

Southern Virginia University, which joined the ODAC as a football only member in 2019, announced in December of that year that it will be leaving both the ODAC and Coast to Coast Athletic Conference to join the football-sponsoring USA South Athletic Conference as a full member.[8]

The conference has hosted Division III championships in football and men's basketball, both of which were held in Salem, Virginia. D-III softball has also used Salem as a championship host along with Division III women's lacrosse and volleyball on several occasions. Since 1993 - the conference and city have hosted over 80 Division III national championships.

It was announced on November 17, 2020 that Emory & Henry College will leave the ODAC and begin it's transition to Division II in July 2021 and compete in the South Atlantic Conference in 2022.[9]

The most recent change in conference membership was announced on March 8, 2021, that Averett University will leave the USA South and join it's former USA South counterpart Ferrum College in the ODAC as a full member in 2022.[10]

Member schools


Institution Location Nickname Founded Type Enrollment Football? Joined
Bridgewater College Bridgewater, Virginia Eagles 1880 Private 1,690 Yes 1976
Eastern Mennonite University Harrisonburg, Virginia Royals 1917 Private 998 No 1976
Ferrum College Ferrum, Virginia Panthers 1913 Private 1,500 Yes 2018
Guilford College Greensboro, North Carolina Quakers 1837 Private 2,682 Yes 1991
Hampden–Sydney College^ Hampden Sydney, Virginia Tigers 1775 Private 1,120 Yes 1976
Hollins University†% Roanoke, Virginia *None* 1842 Private 816 No 1982
University of Lynchburg Lynchburg, Virginia Hornets 1903 Private 2,500 No 1976
Randolph College Lynchburg, Virginia WildCats 1891 Private 522 No 1982
Randolph–Macon College Ashland, Virginia Yellow Jackets 1830 Private 1,146 Yes 1976
Roanoke College Salem, Virginia Maroons 1842 Private 2,100 No 1976
Shenandoah University Winchester, Virginia Hornets 1875 Private 2,800 Yes 2012
Sweet Briar College Sweet Briar, Virginia Vixens 1901 Private 530 No 1982
Virginia Wesleyan University Virginia Beach, Virginia Marlins 1961 Private 1,446 No 1989
Washington and Lee University Lexington, Virginia Generals 1749 Private 2,200 Yes 1976

† - Women's college, therefore not competing in men's sports.
^ - Men's college, therefore not competing in women's sports.
% - Hollins University does not have an athletic nickname.

Future members

Institution Location Nickname Founded Type Enrollment Joining
Averett University Danville, Virginia Cougars 1859 Private/Non-sectarian 2,719 2022

Associate members

Institution Location Nickname Founded Type Enrollment Joined Primary conference ODAC sport(s)
Greensboro College Greensboro, North Carolina Pride 1838 Private 1,250 2011-12 USA South women's swimming

Former members

Institution Location Nickname Founded Type Enrollment Joined Left Current conference
Catholic University Washington, D.C. Cardinals 1887 Private 3,469 1981 1989 Landmark
Emory & Henry College Emory, Virginia Wasps 1836 Private 1,000 1976 2021 Independent
in 2021-22
South Atlantic Conference
(DII) in 2022-23
Maryville College Maryville, Tennessee Scots 1819 Private 1,176 1980 1988 USA South
Mary Baldwin College Staunton, Virginia Fighting Squirrels 1842 Private 2,542 1984 1992 USA South

Former associate members

Institution Location Nickname Founded Type Enrollment Joined Left ODAC sport(s) Current conference
in former ODAC sport(s)
Catholic University Washington, D.C. Cardinals 1887 Private 3,469 1999 2017 Football NEWMAC
Notre Dame of Maryland University Baltimore, Maryland Gators 1873 Private 4,878 2011-12 2015-16 Women's swimming None
(Dropped swimming)
Southern Virginia University Buena Vista, Virginia Knights 1867 Private 1,106 2019-20 2020-21 Football USA South

Membership timeline

This timeline is expressed with color bars.

Averett UniversitySouthern Virginia UniversityFerrum CollegeShenandoah UniversityNotre Dame of Maryland UniversityGreensboro CollegeGuilford CollegeVirginia Wesleyan CollegeMary Baldwin CollegeSweet Briar CollegeRandolph CollegeHollins UniversityThe Catholic University of AmericaMaryville CollegeWashington and Lee UniversityRoanoke CollegeRandolph–Macon CollegeLynchburg CollegeHampden–Sydney CollegeEmory and Henry CollegeEastern Mennonite UniversityBridgewater College

Purple denotes football playing member.
Green denotes non-football playing member.
Red denotes associate member (football-only).
Blue denotes associate member (swimming only).


See also: Old Dominion Athletic Conference Men's Basketball Tournament

The conference sponsors championships in the following sports:

Conference sports
Sport Men's Women's
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Cross Country
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Field Hockey
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY
Track and field (indoor)
Green tickY
Green tickY
Track and field (outdoor)
Green tickY
Green tickY
Green tickY


  1. ^ "Virginia Colleges form Conference; 1976 Action Set". The Bee (Danville, Virginia). May 20, 1975. p. 8.
  2. ^ "D3 football Catholic returns to ODAC". July 7, 1999. Retrieved February 17, 2012.
  3. ^ "Shenandoah University to Join the ODAC". ODAC. September 29, 2010. Retrieved November 15, 2010.
  4. ^ "ODAC Unveils New Set of Logos". ODAC. October 13, 2010. Retrieved November 15, 2010.
  5. ^ Nick Anderson and Susan Svrluga (March 3, 2015). "Sweet Briar College to close because of financial challenges". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 21, 2015.
  6. ^ Karin Kapsidelis (June 20, 2015). "Agreement reached to keep Sweet Briar open - Richmond Times-Dispatch: Virginia News And Politics". Retrieved June 21, 2015.
  7. ^ "NEWMAC Adds Eighth Football Member Catholic University". NEWMAC (published April 8, 2015). September 19, 2015. Retrieved October 1, 2015.
  8. ^ "Southern Virginia Set to Join USA South" (Press release). Southern Virginia University Athletics. December 11, 2019. Retrieved December 11, 2019.
  9. ^ "Emory & Henry College to Join South Atlantic Conference; Will Begin Competition in 2022-23" (Press release). South Atlantic Conference. November 17, 2020. Retrieved November 28, 2020.
  10. ^ "Averett University to Join the ODAC as a Full-Time Member". ODAC. March 8, 2021. Retrieved March 9, 2021.