By Southeastern University
Southeastern University's athletics department continues to grow. Duane Aagaard, SEU's director of athletics, announced April 4 the addition of men's and women's cross country to its varsity sports. Both sports are scheduled to begin in the fall of 2012 and will compete in the NAIA's Sun Conference.
"Cross country will be a great addition to the Southeastern University athletics department," Aagaard said. "I have tremendous respect for distance runners; their mental discipline serves as a great resource for a life committed to growing in Christ."
The expansion now moves the Fire from 11 to 13 varsity teams, combining with SEU's announcement of beginning men's tennis and women's softball back in January. Those two sports are also scheduled to begin official competition this upcoming fall. The move also bolsters The Sun Conference, as all 11 existing members will now offer men's and women's cross country as varsity sports.
"I can't wait to see Southeastern cross country runners training across Lakeland, running around Lake Hollingsworth, Lake Mirror, and downtown," added Aagaard.
SEU will immediately look to hire a director of cross country, who will be responsible for overseeing the everyday operations of both programs.
"On behalf of The Sun Conference, congratulations and well done, Southeastern," Sun Conference Commissioner Mark Pope said. "As a committed runner for over 40 years, I can tell you that cross country is truly a sport that will stay with you for life.
"You will also find an added benefit is the high level of scholarship that usually accompanies a cross country team."
Both cross country programs will carry competitive roster sizes for the upcoming season.
Potential coaching candidates and students athletes interested in participating in cross country are encouraged to contact Duane Aagaard at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 863-667-5046.