HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. -- Northern Kentucky University's department of athletics ushered in a new era July 1, becoming an official member of the Horizon League. As the 10th member of the League, the Norse will play a full conference slate in all sports this season.

"This is truly an exciting time for Norse Nation," said Ken Bothof, NKU's director of athletics. "As members of the Horizon League, we are in a strong position to increase the support of our student-athletes, engage our fans and build regional rivalries. 

The Horizon League is filled with like-minded Universities, each of which lies in the same regional footprint as Northern Kentucky. Wright State will serve as NKU's travel partner, while the Norse will also meet Cleveland State, Detroit, Green Bay, Milwaukee, Oakland, UIC, Valparaiso and Youngstown State in conference action.

Reduced travel time in the Horizon League will benefit NKU's student-athletes, which combined to post back-to-back semesters last year with department-wide GPAs of 3.2 or better. In the fall, NKU's student-athletes recorded a 3.22 GPA, which set a program record. The Norse followed with a 3.20 GPA this spring.