Ohio Valley University's entrance into the Great Midwest Athletic Conference will involve some familiar company.
Earlier this week, Cumberland University was accepted by the G-MAC Presidents Council as a provisional member. This is the same Cumberland University which employs an athletic director who laid the groundwork for OVU to become an NCAA Division II institution.
Long-time residents of the Mid-Ohio Valley will remember the name Ron Pavan, who worked under the same title at OVU before moving to Lebanon, Tenn., in 2008.
"It's going to feel a little weird," Pavan said in reuniting with the OVU family. "I have great memories of OVU."
This past school year as an NAIA program in the Mid-South Conference, Cumberland won league championships in women's soccer, women's basketball, men's bowling and baseball.
During the football season, the Bulldogs finished 8-3 and 4-2 in the conference and ended the campaign ranked No. 20 nationally.
Nearly 600 athletes are involved in the 18 sports sponsored by the Bulldogs.
"When you have college football, that drives your campus - it's like West Virginia University where I graduated from," Pavan said.
If admitted by the NCAA Membership Committee next July, Cumberland will begin candidacy year one of the three-year reclassification process in 2014-15 and would potentially be on course to become an active Division II member in 2017-18.
The G-MAC features eight active Division II members, including Alderson-Broaddus, Cedarville, Central State, Davis & Elkins, Kentucky Wesleyan, OVU, Salem International and Ursuline.
Trevecca Nazarene has moved into the third and final year of the Division II membership process, while Georgetown is a provisional member.
"In meeting with everybody here on campus at Cumberland University, everybody felt like this would be a good fit for us," Pavan said.
Pavan's wife Tammy works as the registrar at Cumberland. Their daughter Madison played four seasons with the Bulldog women's basketball team, while Jenna is a junior on the school's volleyball team. Their son Mason is a freshman with the football program.
"We have a lot of good memories of Parkersburg - we loved it there," Ron Pavan said.
Both individuals lost their fathers several years ago and Ritchie County golf coach Ted VanScoy figured the best way to keep their memories alive was to conduct this annual event.
"It's nice to see everybody come out and enjoy an extra tournament during the year," Collins said.
Both Metz and Collins are preparing for the fall semester at West Virginia University. The golf tournament gave them an opportunity to reflect on their three state titles and one runner-up finish.
"It's funny thinking about the state tournaments," Collins said. "I was an alternate, but how we acted as a team we took golf very seriously. At the same time, we couldn't take it too seriously."
Playing competitive rounds of golf has tailed off for both individuals. During this past summer, Metz worked as a lifeguard at North Bend State Park.
"I play for fun, but not competitively," Metz said.
Contact Kerry Patrick at email@example.com