In separate actions this week, the NCAA Division II and Division III Management Councils each recommended that their divisions add women's wrestling (along with acrobatics/tumbling) to their list of emerging sports for women. These decisions are based on a recommendation from the NCAA Committee on Women's Athletics, which oversees the emerging sports program with the goal of increasing participation opportunities for female athletes.
The Presidents Council of each division will review the proposal at its meeting next month. If each Council supports the recommendation, Division II and Division III members will vote on whether to add women's wrestling and acrobatics/tumbling to their emerging sports lists at the 2020 NCAA Convention.
Both women's wrestling and acrobatics/tumbling are on similar tracks in NCAA Division I.
The NCAA Committee on Women's Athletics pointed to women's wrestling's rapid growth at the high school and college level -- as well as the diversity of its participants, among other factors -- as reasons to add it to the emerging sports list.
The purpose of the emerging sports list is to provide a fast track for eligible women's sports to become full-fledged NCAA championship events. The NCAA currently has three emerging sports: equestrian, rugby and triathlon.
NCAA rules require that emerging sports must gain championship status within 10 years or show steady progress toward that goal to remain on the list.