MIAC announces 2018-19 rule changes, Presidents’ Council Executive Committee members


BLOOMINGTON, Minn. – The Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) announced several new rules and amended bylaws for the 2018-19 academic year that its membership approved through the Conference governance process. Several rules reshape sport operations, while others address student-athlete health and safety. In addition, the MIAC also announced new leadership serving on its Presidents' Executive Committee.

The Conference adopted new heat, cold and lightning policies for contests in order to maximize the health, safety, and sport performance of all participating student-athletes. Under the new heat policy, precautions will be made when the wet bulb globe temperature (WBGT) reaches 76.2. The policy also requires the immediate halting of contests when WBGT reaches 86.1. WBGT is the measurement of ambient temperature, humidity, radiation and wind speed, enabling athletic trainers to calculate the relative risk of heat illness based on environmental conditions.

The MIAC also adopted rules that require institutions to take precautions when the "feels-like" temperature reaches 29 degrees or below. No outdoor contests will be played when the "feels-like" temperature registers zero or below. "Feels-like" temperature is determined by the combination of actual air temperature, humidity and wind chill.

In addition, MIAC membership approved expanding the lightning radius from eight miles to 10 miles, which will require contests to be stopped when a lightning strike is within 10 miles. Activity will not begin again until 30 minutes after the last lightning strike within 10 miles.

The membership also adopted changes to its Incident Review procedures, sportsmanship expectations, Student-Athlete Advisory Committee meetings and approved a membership review process. The MIAC instituted an awards equity rule that establishes consistency and equality across team sports in terms of the number of All-Conference honorees and MIAC postseason events will now have new ticket prices with admission set at $10 for adults and $2 for students.

Additional changes were announced for the MIAC Presidents' Council Executive Committee, effective this academic year. President Rebecca Bergman (Gustavus Adolphus College) will begin a two-year term as Chair of Presidents. Joining her on the Executive Committee is President Mary Dana Hinton (College of Saint Benedict) serving as Vice-Chair, while President Steven Poskanzer (Carleton College) will serve in the At-Large position.

The following is a brief summary of several changes that were adopted by MIAC membership for the upcoming academic year.

Overall (general code and appendixes)
Weather Policies (Appendix F) – Established heat, cold and extended lightning radius policies.
Incident Review (Appendix O) – Revised process, timeline for reporting, and established appeal structure.
Sportsmanship (Appendix N) – Revised coaches expectations regarding conduct.
Awards Equity – Created allowance to honor up to 30% AC and 10% HM of defined starters in team sports.
Postseason Tickets – Adjusted Adult price to $10 and lowered Student price to $2.
SAAC (Appendix K) – Reduced to two meetings annually (Monday at 8 p.m.), conducted via video conference.
Member Review / Expulsion – Established process for reviewing membership.

Playoffs – Adjusted playoff dates to Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday. If the same team is hosting both genders, those games will become a doubleheader at 5 & 8 p.m.
Schedule [Women's] – Conference schedule will consist of 20 games beginning in 2019-20.

Halftime Targeting Video Review – Established a halftime targeting ejection video review (one-year trial).

Men's Ice Hockey
Showcase – Eliminated annual Showcase, effective Fall 2019.
Tiebreakers – Added winning percentage as a third tie-breaker.

First Permissible Practice – Moved first permissible practice date to January 25.

Swimming & Diving
Championship Sessions – Expanded championship by adding evening session and shifted the event to Thursday evening through Sunday (one-year trial)
First Permissible Practice – Match NCAA first permissible practice date.

Anti-Stacking – Repealed one-year trial of anti-stacking bylaw.
Honorable Mention – Established honorable mention awards and process.

Track & Field
Academic All-Conference – Changed athletic qualification to 'qualifiers' for the MIAC Championships and combined Indoor & Outdoor listings.
Electronic Measuring – Require championship host to use electronic measuring in hammer, discus, and javelin.

Line-Judges – Conference will assign line-judges for non-conference (non-tournament) matches.