The NCAA, or the National Collegiate Athletic Association, is the primary organization for college level athletics in the United States. Founded in 1906 as a result of a plea by President Theodore Roosevelt to reform college football as the Intercollegiate Athletic Association of the United States, the organization now organizes and regulates events, scholarships, and recruiting in a number of sports in the US (As well as Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, BC, Canada) at all levels.
Sports Officially Sanctioned by the NCAA
StructureEach sport is subdivided into "Divisions" which denote level of play. The number of divisions and qualifications for them differ from sport to sport. See the page on the NCAA on The Other Wiki for more details. Aside from the Divisional Structure, NCAA teams are, in the majority of cases, members of athletic conferences. These conferences often act as member leagues of the NCAA, and usually organize their own meetings and tournaments, as well as their own rules for member schools. While there are a few schools that remain independent, the vast majority of schools join due to the added benefits (Scheduling, scholarships, postseason and tournament play) that conferences bring. Additionally, for these reasons it is not uncommon for a school to be a member of a conference for one sport, but a member of a different one for another.