OVC Concludes Spring Meetings

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – The Ohio Valley Conference concluded its annual Spring Conference meetings last Friday in Nashville. The event ran from May 30 to June 3.


After not hosting the in-person event since 2019, attendees (which included the league’s three newest schools in Lindenwood, Little Rock and Southern Indiana; the trio officially joins the conference on July 1) heard various speakers, discussed and voted. OVC business articles and planned for the 2022-23 academic year, which will mark the 75th anniversary of the founding of the OVC.


The OVC Board of Presidents reviewed an action point developed by the Board of Athletic Directors earlier in the spring, detailing transitioning schools eligible for OVC championships and its policy for awarding its automatic NCAA (AQ) qualifier if a transitioning school wins the championship. The adopted policy states that if a transitioning school wins an OVC Championship, QA will be awarded to the highest remaining seed in that round of a tournament bracket. Council unanimously supported the recommendation.


The Board has agreed to continue to participate in live and pre-recorded video on the experimental bench rule for the sports of men’s and women’s basketball (it was first used in Conference competitions during the 2021 season -22). The Board also approved the use of an experimental rule from the Men’s Basketball Rules Committee to allow conferences to take all five second-half media timeouts on the first dead-ball situation under the 17, 14, 11 , 8 and 4 minutes mark; the rationale is to help the flow of the game so that commercial breaks are not taken when teams use their allotted timeouts.


For the sport of football, the group continued its programming work for the partnership between the OVC and the Grand Sud which begins in the 2023 season. Among the points discussed were the 2023 football calendar and the parameters of the 2024 calendar.

The group reviewed production numbers for the school year which saw nearly 800 events broadcast on ESPN+, including OVC Championships and all men’s and women’s football and basketball games. Members agreed to increase the requirements for broadcast numbers contests in the future.


Members discussed OVC branding standards, reviewed previous standards, and approved policy updates and an implementation timeline for the future. An updated uniform logo policy was included, at a minimum one signage or logo on the playing surface at each venue.
The Board supported a motion to establish a community service award to honor the outstanding contributions of OVC student-athletes in their communities. Previously, the Conference honored community contributions with other awards, but did not have an award strictly for community service.


Allocations for the three cabinets (Championships, Competition; Governance, Administration and Student-Athlete Experience) within the OVC governance structure were shared with the membership.


It has been announced that the chair of the Council of Presidents next year will be Dr Jay Morgan of Morehead State University, while the chair of the Council of Athletics Directors for 2022-23 will be the Eastern Illinois. Tom Michael.


Locations for a variety of future OVC Championships were discussed, including rotation for Cross Country and Track and Field Championships. More information on upcoming championship dates/locations will be available soon.

During the meetings, attendees heard from Dave Schnase, Vice President of Academic and NCAA Membership Affairs. He provided an update on the Division I Transformation Committee, the Image and Likeness of Name (NIL), the impact of the NCAA Transfer Portal and the sale of data.
Attendees heard from Quinn Eaton (Murray State) and Meghan Donovan (Eastern Illinois), members of the OVC’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), about issues affecting student-athletes. Among the items they highlighted were OVC SAAC Diversity and Inclusion Day, Mental Health Awareness Week and the continuation of the Hoops for Heroes initiative at the OVC Basketball Championship. . Among SAAC’s priorities was a request for further engagement and empowerment of its activities on campus. After discussion, the Board unanimously approved that, at a minimum, each OVC Athletic Director will attend one SAAC meeting on campus each academic year as a show of support.


The group received an in-depth presentation from Todd Petr, former NCAA Director General of Research and Founder and Project Manager of Total Analytics Performance. His presentation detailed the academic performance of OVC student-athletes in addition to student-athlete transfer trends for both Division I and OVC.


Additionally, participants participated in an exercise with Springboard International Associate Dr. Milan Larson. An esteemed expert in organizational culture for over 30 years, Larson has helped the group identify strategies and techniques to adapt and thrive in times of change.


The week ended with the annual League Honors Brunch, which honored the OVC’s Male and Female Athletes of the Year (Eastern Illinois’ Dustin Hatfield and Lindsey Carlson), the winner of the Steve Hamilton Sportsmanship Award (Grace Powderly of Southeastern Missouri) and saw former Southeastern Missouri Volleyball. coach and administrator Cindy Gannon is inducted into the conference Hall of Fame.

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