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College Cycling Teams - Bike Racing at the College and University Level

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Although many colleges and universities have cycling at the club level, there are only 15 full-fledged varsity cycling teams in the United States. These are teams that operate under the auspices of the school's athletic deparment and receive institutional support, including salaries for coaches and managers and a budget for travel and entry fees. Depending on the level of competition, (i.e., NCAA Division I, II, etc.) some even provide scholarships for student cyclist athletes. The following schools feature cycling as a varsity sport:

1. Brevard College -- North Carolina

Brevard College

Location: Brevard, NC - in the Blue Ridge Mountains
Enrollment: 700
Mascot: Tornados
Interesting Fact: U.S. News ranks Brevard among the top comprehensive colleges in the South, and among the best schools in the country in terms of students' first year experiences. Brevard College’s Cycling Team has won the past three Division II Collegiate Mountain Bike Championships and the area is absolutely loaded with top-notch singletrack.

2. Centenary College -- Louisiana

Centenary College of Louisiana

Location: Shreveport, Louisiana
Enrollment: 840
Mascot: Gents/Ladies
Interesting Fact: Centenary is the smallest school that competes in Division I athletics.

3. Cumberland University - Tennessee

Cumberland University

Location: Lebanon, Tennessee
Enrollment: 1350
Mascot: Bulldogs
Interesting Fact: Cumberland University’s cycling team claimed 7th place overall at the 2007 National Collegiate Cycling Association (NCCA) Mountain Bike National Championships.

4. Fort Lewis College -- Colorado

Fort Lewis Skyhawks

Location: Durango, Colorado
Enrollment: 3900
Mascot: Skyhawks
Interesting Fact: Fort Lewis College has perhaps the strongest collegiate cycling program in the nation, bringing home national titles in Mountain Biking (1994-1996, 2000-2001, 2003-2004, 2006-2007); the Division II Road Championship (2000); and Cyclocross (2003-2005).
Cycling page: Ft. Lewis Cycling

5. King College -- Tennessee

Location: Bristol, TN
Enrollment: 1700
Mascot: Tornados
Interesting Fact: King College launched its varsity cycling program in the fall of 2009. The squad is currently recruiting riders and has scholarship money available for qualified cyclists.

"We will focus on road racing initially, though our conference is looking to initiate a cyclocross competition this year," says Coach Dan Kreiss. "If that goes ahead and we have interested riders we may pursue that as well."

King College is located in a part of the country where there is a concentration of schools with varsity cycling squads. Brevard, Mars Hill, Union, Milligan, Lees McRae, Lindsey Wilson, Pfeiffer and Warren Wilson are all within a couple of hours of King.

6. Lees-McRae College -- North Carolina

Carla Swart Lees-McRae
Lees-McRae Sports Information

Location: Banner Elk, North Carolina
Enrollment: 900
Mascot: Bobcats
Interesting Fact: Lees-McRae Bobcats have captured three consecutive Division I national championships in cyclocross and are in the thick of competition for an overall national crown. VeloNews called cyclist Carla Swart (pictured) the best female American collegiate rider ever.

7. Lindenwood University - Missouri

Lindenwood Lions

Location: St. Charles, Missouri
Enrollment: 14,500
Mascot: Lions
Interesting Fact: Cycling became a varsity sport at Lindenwood in 2007. Riders compete in the Midwest Collegiate Cycling Conference, sanctioned by USA Cycling.

8. Lindsey Wilson College -- Kentucky

Lindsey Wilson

Location: Columbia, Kentucky
Enrollment: 1800
Mascot: Blue Raiders
Interesting Fact: Lindsey Wilson's cycling squad took third in 2008 in the Division I cyclocross championships, and the school is currently building its own BMX course. The program has been highly successful, with eight individual national championships and two national team titles. Among current riders is Weston Pope, a two-time BMX world champion.

Additionally, if you want to go for a college scholarship, Lindsey Wilson may be your best bet. The school is among the most well-funded programs in the nation, offering scholarships to over 40 cyclists in any given year.


9. Marian University - Indiana

Marian College - Anna Sklorenko
Marian College

Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
Enrollment: 2,050
Mascot: Knights
Interesting Fact: Marian has a particularly strong track cycling program, with a thick string of individual and team championships going back to 1992. Marian riders have captured 11 national collegiate track cycling championships in 14 years including the last three straight. Individuals who have competed for Marian College cycling have won 41 national championships in individual or team events since Marian College’s first national championship competition in 1992.

Marian College became Marian University on July 1, 2009.

10. Mars Hill College -- North Carolina

Mars Hill College

Location: Mars Hill, North Carolina, outside Asheville.
Enrollment: 1500
Mascot: Lions
Interesting Fact: Mars Hill's location in the Blue Ridge Mountains offers some excellent riding. Area climbs feature colorful names reflecting the interesting local character, including "The Wall” “Elevator Shaft” and the most challenging, "Little Tinker Bell,” which is not quite the happy experience as it sounds like. Mars Hill is a member of the South Atlantic Conference.

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