The Richmond Register


June 4, 2014

OVC: EKU’s Benson, Sandy named to OVC positions

MADISON COUNTY — During the Ohio Valley Conference Spring Meetings, which concluded May 30 in Brentwood Tenn., Eastern Kentucky University President Michael Benson was selected as Chair of the Board of Presidents and EKU Athletics Director Mark Sandy was chosen the Chair of Athletics for 2014-15.

During the week-long meetings, the OVC Board of Presidents approved an extension to OVC Commissioner Beth DeBauche contract, which is now a five-year rolling contract that runs through the 2018-19 academic year. DeBauche was named the conference’s seventh full-time commissioner on July 26, 2009.

Other items of business during the meetings include a guiding philosophy on future membership, the announcement of a “Rainy Day Fund” for the Basketball Enrichment Plan, a format change for the OVC Women’s Basketball Championship, a plan to review targeting calls at halftime of league football games, the establishment of an “Award of Excellence” for outstanding OVC Digital Network productions, a modification of league policy to require member institutions to have the ability to web stream in order to host championship events.

n The league voted to change the format for the OVC Women’s Basketball Tournament beginning with the 2015 championship.

Rather than the current double-bye format that the league has been using since 2011, the tournament will now be seeded in a traditional 1-8 format. The No. 1 seed will play the No. 8 seed, two will play seven, etc. during the first round of the tournament.

n It was determined as a guiding membership philosophy, that the Ohio Valley Conference will not consider any institution for membership that is not currently a member of Division I.

n The League announced the establishment of a “Rainy Day Fund” in conjunction with the Basketball Enrichment Plan. The plan, established three years ago, distributes revenue earned through victories in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship back to schools for use to enhance the sport of men’s basketball and was put in place to help continue to grow the sport of men’s basketball due to unprecedented recent success in the sport.

The Rainy Day Fund will help support the plan in years when there are no NCAA victories (the OVC has won at least one NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament game in four of the last six seasons). The OVC Board of Presidents will set aside money for the Rainy Day Fund beginning with the upcoming fiscal year (2014-15).

n In light of the NCAA’s recently released process for reviewing targeting plays when instant replay is not available, the conference will establish a process for reviewing targeting calls at halftime of league football games beginning with the 2014 season.

n With the continued success of the 2-year-old OVC Digital Network, which produces free high-definition webcasts — 600-plus events with more than 250,000 viewers last year, and more than 800 events and 350,000-plus viewers this year — the league has established an Award of Excellence program to honor outstanding productions from each of the league’s member institution.

The league also modified its policy to now require member institutions to have the ability to web-stream from a venue in order to host an OVC Championship, beginning with the 2015-16 school year.

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