Lake Michigan Conference

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The history of the Lake Michigan Conference
The Lake Michigan Conference started out as the Wisconsin Conference of Independent Colleges (WCIC) founded in 1974, for men’s intercollegiate athletic programs in Wisconsin. The league’s charter members included:

Blackhawk Technical College (Janesville, WI)
Cardinal Stritch College (Milwaukee, WI)
Edgewood College (Madison, WI)
Gateway Technical College-Kenosha (Kenosha, WI)
Gateway Technical College-Racine (Racine, WI)
Maranatha Baptist Bible College (Watertown, WI)
Marian College (Fond du Lac, WI)
Northwestern College (Watertown, WI)
St. Francis de Sales College (Milwaukee, WI)

Within the next three years, four schools would leave the league (Blackhawk, Gateway-Kenosha, Gateway-Racine, and St. Francis), and Milwaukee School of Engineering would join the WCIC. At the end of 1981, Edgewood would leave the league, but return in 1990.

In 1981, Trinity Christian College (Palos Heights, IL), an out-of-state school would join the league. With this addition, the conference administrators sought out a new name for the conference, deciding on the “Lake Michigan Conference” in reference to the schools’ proximity to the Great Lake. The following year, Lakeland College (Sheboygan, WI) and Concordia College (Mequon, WI; changed to Concordia University in Fall of 1989) would be added to the mix. After a short stint, Trinity College left the LMC, and was replaced by Wisconsin Lutheran College (Milwaukee, WI) in 1987.

The women’s programs were in the Wisconsin Independent Colleges Women’s Athletic Conference (WIC-WAC). In its existence from 1975-1989, the conference members at some time included:

Beloit College (Beloit, WI)
Cardinal Stritch College* (Milwaukee, WI)
Concordia College* (Mequon, WI)
Edgewood College  (Madison, WI)
Lawrence University (Appleton, WI)
Lakeland College* (Sheboygan, WI)
Maranatha Baptist Bible College* (Watertown, WI)
Marian College* (Fond du Lac, WI)
Milton College (Milton, WI)
Mount Mary College* (Milwaukee, WI)
Milwaukee School of Engineering* (Milwaukee, WI)
Ripon College (Ripon, WI)
Silver Lake College* (Manitowoc, WI)
St. Norbert College (DePere, WI)
Wisconsin Lutheran College* (Milwaukee, WI)
    *-Members in 1988-89.

The LMC men’s programs and WIC-WAC women’s programs wanted to exist in the same conference. In the 1989-90 school year, all the remaining members of the WIC-WAC were invited to join the LMC. In 1995 the conference lost Northwestern College when it combined its campus with Martin Luther College in New Ulm, Minnesota. At the end of the 1996-97 school year the LMC would become a NCAA III member conference losing three of its members (Cardinal Stritch, Mount Mary, and Silver Lake) who chose not the join the NCAA. Alverno College became a full member of the league in the 2004-05 academic year, as did Dominican University in 2005-06. At that time the LMC consisted of nine members:

Alverno College
Concordia University Wisconsin
Dominican University
Edgewood College
Lakeland College
Maranatha Baptist Bible College
Marian College
Milwaukee School of Engineering
Wisconsin Lutheran College

The 2005-06 academic year marked the final year of the Lake Michigan Conference. In 2006, all LMC members joined the newly formed Northern Athletics Conference (NorthernAC.org) along with four members of the neighboring Northern Illinois-Iowa Conference.

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