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The Colonial Athletic Association

Overview
All the Drexel sports teams participate in the CAA, the Colonial Athletic Association. The CAA is made up of 10 teams and is known in the realm of college basketball as a "mid-major," that is they're not a power conference, but they aren't exactly the bottom of the barrel either. In basketball, the 10 teams compete during the regular season for seeding in the conference tournament held every March at the Richmond Coliseum in Richmond, VA. As is the case for almost all Division I conferences, the winner of that tournament is given a free ticket to the NCAA Tournament.

A Brief History
The CAA was formed in 1985 when several schools from the ECAC defected and formed their own conference. In 2001, the CAA lost ECU, American University & the University of Richmond. To make up for the losses they brought in four new schools, Drexel being one of them. When the dust settled the CAA had become collectively stronger with 10 teams:

  • Drexel University
  • University of Delaware
  • George Mason University
  • Hofstra University
  • James Madison University
  • Old Dominion University
  • Towson University
  • University of North Carolina Wilmington
  • Virginia Commonwealth University
  • The College of William & Mary

Adding Drexel, UD, Hofstra & Towson effectively stretched the CAA’s media range from New York City as far south as the beaches of North Carolina, with stops in between in Philadelphia, Baltimore & D.C.

Sure, but are these teams good?
In fact the CAA is a much better conference than a lot of people know, and this year is shaping up to be their most competitive season yet. Since 1981, 12 CAA champions have won games in the NCAA tournament against much higher seeds. The most recent Cinderella was UNCW in 2002 when they upset the then #3 seed USC before losing to eventual National Runner-Up Indiana. Last season, UNCW again reached the big dance, this time losing at the buzzer to #6 seed Maryland in what was probably the most exciting game of the entire tournament.

The CAA did not lose that much talent to graduation last season, and what they did lose they’ve already made up for with freshmen additions and transfers. It is unsure who is going to be celebrating at center court of the Coliseum in March, but what is certain is that who ever that team happens to be, they will be competitive in the NCAA Tournament.

Drexel’s CAA Past
This will be just Drexel’s third season in the Colonial Athletic Association but their men’s basketball team has already etched its place in the record books. In Drexel’s inaugural season they finished tied for 3rd in the conference, head coach Bruiser Flint was named conference Coach of the Year, and Robert Battle was named Defensive Player of the Year as well as being named to the First Team All-Conference. In Drexel’s second season they made the conference finals and lost a heart breaker to UNCW. Robert Battle was once again named to the All-Conference Team, along with Eric Schmeider. Battle was also named Defensive Player of the Year for the second time. This season the Dragons will be hoping to replace Battle and Schmeider and certainly have the talent to compete for a top spot.

For more information, visit the Official CAA Website.


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Copyright © 2004
Questions or comments? Email us at dacpack@drexel.edu.