ABAC's athletic director says the college is looking at the possibility of matching its athletic program to its growing status as a state college and four-year institution.
Athletic Director Alan Kramer said the school may consider transitioning from the National Junior College Athletic Association to the NAIA or even NCAA.
ABAC has six current sports -- golf, women's soccer, men’s and women’s tennis, softball, and baseball. What about other competitive sports such as basketball, a men's soccer team and even cross country? Why are these popular college sports not offered at ABAC?
According to the Kramer, "Any newly added sports would require an increase in athletic fees or a significant increase in enrollment."
In order to have a better and a broader athletic program at ABAC, the student government as well as the administration would have to come together and increase the school's commitment, both philosophically and financially.
Kramer added, "There are many factors to consider when adding new sports to ABAC such as: economics, Title IX, teams to compete against in the conference, teams to compete against in the region and nation, traditions, facilities, competitiveness, recruitment success, social, student interest, etc."
Cross country would be the easiest to add for the upcoming seasons because of how relatively inexpensive it is. Cross country is also a growing sport in popularity.
Eighty-five cross country teams in the NJCAA competed in the United States in 2004-05 with 695 athletes. In 2011-12 there were 125 teams with 1102 athletes.
Teams that compete in our conference of the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Association in Region XVII include Darton, South Georgia, Gordon, Chattahoochee Tech and North Georgia Tech.
Four-year schools that run cross-country include Valdosta St., Georgia, Florida, Georgia Tech and Georgia Southern to name a few.
Were the student body to create and show interest in new sports, that would bring about diversity and a positive change and growth at ABAC, some college leaders believe. Doing so would make ABAC a more recognized college.