FRANKFORT, Ky.-Kenn Rashad of HBCUsports.com reported last month Kentucky State University is looking into the possibility of becoming a division 1 program and joining the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC). Kentucky State’s university president Dr. M. Christopher Brown II gave a statement regarding the possible move up, “There have been conversations. No decision has been made. The University is weighing the opportunity,” He also stated that, “There are strengths to remaining in the SIAC and exciting opportunities in shifting to the MEAC.”
President Brown’s comments leave the door open for students and alumni of the program to be excited and look forward to the possibility of being in the most-predominant HBCU conference in the country. The MEAC conference holds some of the biggest HBCU names across the country including Howard University, Florida A&M University, and South Carolina State University, among others. Along with that, moving to the MEAC conference would allow Kentucky State to receive more attention on a national level as an up and comer in the HBCU world. This attention will help to increase enrollment and help to generate revenue across all sports helping to build the school’s reputation and live their motto of “Upward, Onward, Forward.”
Kentucky State does have to be cautious about this situation, however, because if not executed properly, this whole move could blow up their face. Moving up to the division 1 level brings an increase in level of competition in each sport.
The athletic director along with President Brown must seriously evaluate if Kentucky State is ready to compete consistently at the division one level. The school also has to consider with the move to division one, the school has to abide by new rules and standards set by the NCAA. These standards could hinder the amount of revenue generated by the school. The school has to consider the allotment of scholarships and how that will most likely increase throughout each sport. They must consider upgrades to the facilities which is already in progress as of last year when Kentucky State upgraded their football stadium with brand new turf.
Kentucky State has time to consider the possibilities of moving to division one as the process to become a full member takes anywhere from three to four years to complete. There are some tough evaluations and decisions that need to be made by the athletic department and President Brown. Students and Alumni fans will just have to wait and see what steps the school takes next.