Big news coming out of Charlotte.
The CIAA has announced it will move eight of its 10 championships outside of the state of North Carolina. That includes the football championship, as first reported by HBCU Gameday, but excludes the men’s and women’s basketball championships, due to “time constraints.”
Here is the conference’s release in full:
Charlotte, NC () – In a meeting held by the 12 members of the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Board of Directors, a decision was reached to immediately relocate 8 of the 10 North Carolina-based conference championships. Due to time constraints, particularly as they relate to contractual obligations, the 2017 CIAA Women’s and Men’s Basketball Tournament will remain in Charlotte as relocation would not be in the best interest of the membership and its student-athletes at this time.
The CIAA’s transition, beginning with the relocation of 8 championships, is the first step in demonstrating that the conference does not support laws which prevent communities from effectively protecting student-athletes and fans. For the 2017 Basketball Tournament, the CIAA will focus its resources to enhance the student-athlete experience in-venue with collaborative efforts aligning with the Charlotte community to highlight diversity, inclusion, youth education, and leadership. The Board will continue its discussion on hosting future championships in North Carolina and whether the tournament will remain after 2017.
The CIAA Board recognizes that a single decision cannot offer a complete solution to a law that prevents communities from effectively protecting student-athletes and fans attending championships and events. The conference intends to increase its educational efforts to eliminate biases that exclude or marginalize any human being, regardless of one’s race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, or physical disability. The Board’s decision allows the conference to fight against any measures which prevent the fulfillment of its mission to foster inclusive cultures for its student-athletes. With the student-athlete experience in mind, the conference is committed to protecting all of its championship events.
Official announcements from the CIAA regarding new championship locations will be forth coming.