Norse row into Division 1

0 0 1 346 1976 Elder HS 16 4 2318 14.0 Normal 0 false false false EN-US JA X-NONE /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:”Table Normal”; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent:””; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:12.0pt; font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Cambria; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;} “It’s a great start,” said Fox Sports writer and my brother, Joel Beall, about the Northern Kentucky University basketball team in its first season as a division one team. The Norse finished 11-15, which is deceiving because they played some big time schools early in the year and started 0-6. They did however finish 9-9 in the conference. Former NKU basketball great and teacher at Elder High School, Andy Listerman said, “I am not surprised by their success this season.” This is credited to being in the powerhouse D2 conference, the Great Lakes Valley Conference (GLVC). This year Belmont left the Atlantic Sun. Their departure left an opening for a team to jump in. NKU took the opportunity. It’s a big step for a team to go from D2 to D1 and nobody knew what to expect from NKU from their takeoff in the Atlantic Sun. Like I said before, 9-9 in their first year playing D1 is nothing short of spectacular. Listerman also spoke about head coach, Dave Bezold. He spoke of how he was the assistant when he played for the team in ’96-’97 and how good a recruiter this man is. It’s going to be tough for him to grab recruits due to post-season eligibility rules. A transfer from D2 to D1 takes a few years for the team to be eligible. These leads me to say that the Norse of NKU are the strongest local team out of Xavier and Cincinnati. You’re probably thinking this is an absurd statement, but if you think about it, NKU went 9-9 in the conference. UC has been playing horrid as of late and finished 9-9 in the Big East. Xavier also is having a down year, going 9-7 in the Atlantic 10 and most likely will not go on to the NCAA tournament. As a first year team, NKU didn’t let their fans down. “It’s a great accomplishment, finally making it D1, it’s also getting more students to look into their academics as well as sports” senior Nick Beard said. Beard is going on to play baseball at NKU on scholarship. This kind of exposure is exactly what NKU needed to get out word that they mean business. Don’t be surprised to see some strong squads in all athletic fields in the future for the Norse. As a local sports fanatic, it’s hard not to root for the underdog team finally making it to the big show of D1 athletics. I wish the best of luck to NKU and to the future of what is truly a strong, up and coming University.