August 11, 2009 PRINT Bookmark and Share

Huntsville's CCHA Bid Denied

Chargers' Program Left in Doubt as AD Says It's Time to Regroup

CHN Staff Report

The CCHA Council, comprised of athletic administrators and faculty athletic representatives, has voted by acclamation to deny Alabama-Huntsville's application to become a member of the conference.

“The league completed its due diligence of the application for membership submitted by the University of Alabama in Huntsville with careful consideration and discussion of various issues,” CCHA Commissioner Tom Anastos said. “At this time we have chosen to maintain our membership at its current level.”

“The CCHA will remain focused on maintaining and strengthening our existing members to ensure the conference’s continued success and long-term viability.”

Alabama-Huntsville faces the prospect of being a team without a conference next season. Its current conference, College Hockey America, is in its last season of play, with four teams. The other three programs in the conference — Niagara, Robert Morris and Bemidji State — have all since found new homes.

Meanwhile, the CCHA reduces to 11 teams next season, after Nebraska-Omaha decided to switch as part of this offseason's most dramatic news. That switch enabled Bemidji State to be accepted to the WCHA with UNO, starting in 2010-11.

Consequently, many believed UAH's acceptance into the CCHA would naturally follow from that. But it was never a foregone conclusion, due to monetary and competitive factors — as evidenced by today's announcement.

This leaves UAH in a dilemma.

"I have no comment at this time," Huntsville athletic director Jim Harris said. "We're going to regroup a little bit."

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