Sun Belt Conference to sponsor men’s soccer beginning in fall 2022

Sponsorship will begin fall 2022
CCU soccer.
CCU soccer.(Coastal Carolina Athletics)
Published: Apr. 6, 2022 at 3:01 PM EDT
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NEW ORLEANS, LA – The Coastal Carolina men’s soccer team in conjunction with the Sun Belt Conference announced Wednesday, April 6, that the Chanticleers will return to Sun Belt Conference play as the league will sponsor men’s soccer beginning in fall 2022.

“We are excited about the new membership configuration of Sun Belt men’s soccer and look forward to competing once again in our home conference, Vice President of Intercollegiate Athletics and University Recreation Matt Hogue said. “New rivalries are sure to develop and old ones renewed in what will surely be one of the nation’s top college soccer conferences.”

Nine teams will comprise Sun Belt Conference men’s soccer; three of the new Sun Belt members (as of July 1) James Madison, Marshall, and Old Dominion will join Coastal Carolina, Georgia Southern, and Georgia State. In addition, Kentucky, South Carolina, and West Virginia will compete as affiliate members for men’s soccer only. The Sun Belt Conference previously sponsored men’s soccer from 1976-1995 and from 2014-2020.

“We are very excited that the Sun Belt has reinstated men’s soccer,” head coach Shaun Docking said. “With the additional affiliate members, it is going to be one of the top conferences in the country.”

The Sun Belt Conference men’s soccer membership will boast some of the sport’s most accomplished programs. The nine teams have combined for more than 100 all-time NCAA Tournament appearances.

“These elite programs will lend instant credibility and help establish the Sun Belt as one of the nation’s premier men’s collegiate soccer conferences,” said Sun Belt Conference Commissioner Keith Gill. “They each bring their unique traditions and histories of excellence. We welcome them and look forward to a bright future on the pitch.”

Marshall claimed the 2020 NCAA Championship, becoming the first unseeded team to accomplish the feat in nearly 15 years. South Carolina is one of just 24 programs all-time to make 20 or more NCAA Tournament appearances, finishing as national runners-up in 1993.

In the month of September, Coastal Carolina will open conference play on the road at West Virginia. October will see the Chanticleers host Marshall, South Carolina, and ODU while traveling to Georgia State, Kentucky, and JMU. CCU will wrap up Sun Belt play against Georgia Southern in November.

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