St. Thomas' MIAC future possibly at peril due to years of dominance on the field

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The University of St. Thomas could be getting kicked out of their athletic conference for being too good at certain sports, like football.

All 13 members of the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference held a meeting Thursday to discuss the issue. St. Thomas, one of the founding members of the MIAC, said it has no plans of moving, but it may not have a choice if the other schools vote to change rules that would disqualify them.

Presidents from the MIAC schools discussed changing league bylaws, which would eject St. Thomas. The university has been part of the Division III conference since the early 1970s.

“This is a time and a culture where if you don’t win on the field, you find another way to oust an opponent and get rid of them,” said Bob Sansevere, a KQRS Morning Show host.

Sansevere has followed the history of the MIAC and says several of the other schools in the conference are bothered by the Tommies’ success in football and other sports.

“If you can’t beat them, bylaw them,” Sansevere said.

The commissioner of the MIAC would only confirm to FOX 9 the Presidents met Thursday for a discussion on philosophy, competition and membership, saying, in part, “The Presidents of all 13 MIAC institutions attended and agreed to continue discussions at future meetings. No action was taken and no further details will be provided at this time.”

Students at St. Thomas say they enjoy the long-time rivalries with schools like St. John’s University and don’t think it’s necessary to change tradition.

Rock Cates is a senior on the baseball team.

“I think it’s kind of funny,” he said. “My friends and I have been talking about it. It’s like, if you can’t beat them, kick them out of the conference. We’ve been playing together for however long the conference has been going on, so I think it’s kind of silly.”

FOX 9 reached out to the other schools in the conference and only a Hamline University replied. Hamline said it had no comment.