College Athletics' Voice
NCAA serves nation's colleges and universities
Progress and growth have become familiar companions for the National Collegiate Athletic Association during its first 74 years as the major governing organization for intercollegiate athletics in the United States.
A call for stricter control of college football by President Theodore Roosevelt because of the violence in the game brought together 13 institutions in 1905, formulating the original communications base for college athletics.
This initial body called itself the Intercollegiate Athletic Association and was officially constituted March 31, 1906. In 1910, the name was changed to the National Collegiate Athletic Association.
Seven progressive decades have molded this original 13-member body into a membership today of more than 860 colleges, universities, conferences and affiliated organizations.
Administration and rules interpretation occupied early efforts of the organization. Shortly after World War II, the NCAA adopted legislative and executive powers, changing its function into one dealing with virtually all issues concerned with intercollegiate athletics.
Many things have become associated with the NCAA during its colorful history. Highest priority goes to the service it provides to more than 860 members, acting as the true "voice" of college athletics today.
Each January, the NCAA membership comes together at the annual Convention to review, propose and
amend legislation. The Convention presents the opportunity for the nation's institutions of higher learning to speak and act on athletic matters at the national level.
Acting in the best interests of its membership, the NCAA strives to perform these specific functions among its many other responsibilities:
• Conducts 43 annual National Collegiate Championships in 19 sports for three separate divisions. Three championships (Division I, Division II and Division III) are held in baseball, basketball, cross country, golf, lacrosse, soccer, swimming, tennis, outdoor track and wrestling. Two championships (Division I and Divisions II-III) are staged in gymnastics and ice hockey. Fencing, rifle, skiing, indoor track, volleyball and water polo hold single National Collegiate Championships, while football is contested in Divisions I-AA, II and III. The National Collegiate Championship dates back to 1883 in tennis; and during this 76-year history, more than 85,000 student-athletes have competed in these events, with more than 11,000 earning the coveted title of "National Collegiate Champion."
• Maintains 13 rules committees to formulate, copyright and publish rules of play for the government of collegiate sports. Members of these and many other committees are elected by representatives of member institutions at the annual Convention.
• Publishes "official guides" annually for nine sports through the NCAA publishing department.
• Collects, compiles and distributes the official statistics of college football, basketball and baseball through its NCAA statistics service.
• Conducts studies as a means of developing solutions to athletic programs.
• Represents the membership in legislative and regulatory matters on the state and Federal levels.
• Annually selects the College Athletics Top Ten and the Theodore Roosevelt ("Teddy") Award—the Association's highest honor.
• Administers an honors program which annually awards 80 postgraduate scholarships to recognize outstanding senior student-athletes who have excelled in the classroom as well as athletics. This scholarship is for $2,000. The program has provided $1,264,000 to 1,104 recipients since its inception in the 1964-65 academic year.
• Promotes and participates in international sports planning and competition through membership in the United States Olympic Committee, Amateur Basketball Association of the USA, Track and Field Association of the USA, and the United States Baseball, Gymnastics and Wrestling Federations, as well as through NCAA-sponsored competition with Japan.
• Maintains more than 70 full-time staff members at its national headquarters in Mission, Kansas, under the supervision of Executive Director Walter Byers.