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The Evolution of MEAC Bowling
Written By: MEAC Media Relations         Release: 08/18/2008
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Bowling in the MEAC has come a long way since the conference officially sanctioned it as a sport in 1999.

 

After less than a decade of competition, the MEAC is home to the reigning NCAA Women’s Bowling national champions, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, boasts the U.S. Bowling Congress U.S. Women’s Open Champion, Delaware State coach Kim Terrell-Kearney, and is arguably the strongest conference for bowling in the country, top to bottom.

 

That’s a far cry from the sport’s early days when Morgan State, Maryland Eastern Shore, Coppin State and North Carolina A&T were the only conference members who fielded teams. They competed and recruited locally, and teams consisted mostly of walk-ons with little or no bowling experience.

 

“It’s just growing and growing and the competition level has gotten better,’’ says Morgan State coach James Brown, a former professional bowler, who started the bowling  program to fill a void created when the Bears’ discontinued wrestling. “ I’m not sure I envisioned it getting this large in the beginning, but when the NCAA said gender equity was required, I felt it could get real large.’’

 

 The NCAA gave bowling “emerging sport’’ status in 1994, and the MEAC became the first conference to gain NCAA sanctioning for women’s bowling when it adopted the sport prior to the 1996-97 school year.

 

Brown has been bowling coach at Morgan State since the sport’s inception in 1996 on the club level. North Carolina A&T, Maryland Eastern Shore, Howard and Coppin State were the only other conference schools fielding teams at that time. Today all 12 member institutions field teams and recruit nationally and internationally.

 

North Carolina A&T, coached at the time by Vernell Stallings who started the Aggies’ program in 1979, won the inaugural MEAC Bowling Championship hosted by Howard University. The Aggies dominated competition initially, winning four of the first five championships including three straight from 2002-04. Maryland Eastern Shore has won the last three MEAC titles and four crowns overall, having won its first championship in 2001. Bethune-Cookman won the 2005 title, four years after becoming last MEAC school to adopt bowling.

 

Maryland Eastern Shore has established itself as one of the premier programs among the 53 or so schools that bowl and coach Sharon Brummell is the first female to win a national championship in the sport. The Lady Hawks have competed in the NCAA Tournament five times, including the inaugural event in 2004 when they finished seventh in the eight-team field. They recorded the first 300 baker game in NCAA history during the 2004 tournament. They were runners-up in 2007, losing to Vanderbilt 4-3 in the best-of-seven final series.

  The Lady Hawks placed three athletes on the 2008 National Tenpin Coaches Association All-American team, freshmen Kristina Frahm of Oswega, Ill., and  Maria Rodriguez of Ilbague Tolima, Colombia, and senior Jessica Worsley of Brick, N.J. It is the second consecutive year that Maryland Eastern Shore has had three All-Americans. Frahm was also voted 2008 Division I Rookie of the Year.

 

Brown says expanded recruiting is the reason bowling has grown as much as it has in the MEAC, which he says is the strongest conference top to bottom in the country, even though he says here are challenges to be overcome in that area due to the scarcity of information readily available about high school bowlers the way that it is in football and basketball.

 

In many instances, Brown says he learns about bowlers by word of mouth and frequently high school bowlers will contact him.

 

“We’ve been able to find areas where there are better bowlers,’’ he says.

 

And the rest is history.
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Bowling
North Carolina A&T
1013
North Carolina Central
764
12/07
Bowling
North Carolina A&T
1069
Florida A&M
823
12/07
Bowling
Maryland Eastern Shore
1040
Morgan State
781
12/07
Bowling
Maryland Eastern Shore
871
Hampton
566
12/07
Bowling
Coppin State
696
Delaware State
923
12/07
Bowling
Hampton
770
Delaware State
939
12/07
Bowling
Delaware State
894
Morgan State
762
12/07
Bowling
Howard
771
Hampton
677
12/07
Bowling
Coppin State
596
Howard
839
12/07
Bowling
Norfolk State
1188
North Carolina A&T
945
12/07
Bowling
Maryland Eastern Shore
997
Howard
860
12/07
Bowling
Hampton
652
Morgan State
767
12/07
Bowling
Norfolk State
876
Florida A&M
828
12/07
Bowling
Maryland Eastern Shore
984
Delaware State
892
12/07
Bowling
Maryland Eastern Shore
1106
Coppin State
656
12/07
Bowling
Delaware State
986
Howard
756
12/07
Bowling
Norfolk State
954
Bethune-Cookman
917
12/07
Bowling
North Carolina A&T
882
Bethune-Cookman
1019
12/07
Bowling
Coppin State
643
Hampton
677
12/07
Bowling
Morgan State
791
Howard
753
12/07
Bowling
North Carolina Central
762
Florida A&M
818
12/07
Bowling
Bethune-Cookman
827
North Carolina Central
675
12/07
Bowling
Coppin State
572
Morgan State
823
12/07
Bowling
Bethune-Cookman
917
Florida A&M
954
12/07
Bowling
Norfolk State
848
North Carolina Central
740
12/07
Bowling
Coppin State
719
Delaware State
895
12/06
Bowling
Morgan State
742
Howard
645
12/06
Bowling
Hampton
715
Coppin State
626
12/06
Bowling
Coppin State
637
Howard
760
12/06
Bowling
North Carolina A&T
919
North Carolina Central
680
12/06
Bowling
Norfolk State
1007
North Carolina A&T
922
12/06
Bowling
North Carolina A&T
1046
Florida A&M
847
12/06
Bowling
Maryland Eastern Shore
982
Morgan State
759
12/06
Bowling
North Carolina A&T
1000
Bethune-Cookman
944
12/06
Bowling
Norfolk State
889
Florida A&M
1027
12/06
Bowling
Bethune-Cookman
949
Florida A&M
845
12/06
Bowling
Norfolk State
1005
North Carolina Central
701
12/06
Bowling
Coppin State
627
Morgan State
779
12/06
Bowling
Hampton
672
Delaware State
824
12/06
Bowling
Bethune-Cookman
922
North Carolina Central
690
12/06
Bowling
Hampton
713
Howard
739
12/06
Bowling
Hampton
705
Morgan State
809
12/06
Bowling
Maryland Eastern Shore
976
Delaware State
931
12/06
Bowling
Howard
805
Delaware State
982
12/06
Bowling
Maryland Eastern Shore
1005
Hampton
727
12/06
Bowling
North Carolina Central
718
Florida A&M
788
12/06
Bowling
Norfolk State
957
Bethune-Cookman
905
12/06
Bowling
Maryland Eastern Shore
1105
Howard
718
12/06
Bowling
Maryland Eastern Shore
1105
Coppin State
634
12/06
Bowling
Morgan State
785
Delaware State
944
12/06
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