Now, all that has changed -- sort of.
North Greenville, a Baptist-backed university in the sleepy community of Tigerville, S.C., has agreed to a scheduling alliance with the South Atlantic Conference in football beginning in 2011.
While the Crusaders are not full-fledged members of the SAC and will not be eligible for the conference title, the agreement will run through 2014.
North Greenville has had trouble scheduling Division II opponents of late and played only seven D-II games in 2009. In order to qualify for the NCAA Division II playoffs, teams must play a minimum of eight games against D-II competition.
“We are indeed excited to be a part of the South Atlantic Conference through a football alliance with the conference schools,” said North Greenville President Dr. Jimmy Epting. “It is an excellent conference and we appreciate the opportunity to participate in football with such quality institutions."
The agreement also gives SAC teams another regional opponent and can help them cut down on travel costs. SAC football programs include Brevard (N.C.) College, Carson-Newman, Catawba, Lenoir-Rhyne, Lincoln Memorial, Mars Hill, Newberry, Tusculum and Wingate.