The University of Central Arkansas women’s basketball team and the Central Baptist College men are among six college programs earning Outstanding College Program Awards from the Arkansas Basketball Coaches Association.
The ARBCA have awarded three men’s programs and three women’s programs in three categories — NCAA I, NCAA II and NCAA III/NAIA/other— the statewide awards for the past three years.
The men’s recipient for NCAA Division I was the University of Arkansas and the women’s was the University of Central Arkansas.
The UA men posted a 26-10 (12-6, 3rd SEC) record and was the SEC tourney runner-up. The Hogs advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tourney, losing to eventual national champion North Carolina in a close game.
The UCA Sugar Bears finished 26-5, 16-2, and were Southland Conference regular season and tourney champions. They lost to Texas in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
The recipients for NCAA Division II were the University of Arkansas at Monticello men and the Harding University women.
The UAM men posted a 17-5 conference record on their way to a 23-7 season. The Boll Weevils finished tied for first in the Great American Conference and runner-up in the GAC tourney. They lost in the first round of the regional tournament.
The Harding women went 31-4 overall, 21-1 in the GAC and were GAC tournament champions. The Lady Bison advanced to the NCAA Div II national tournament Final Four and lost to Ashland; finishing fourth in the nation in final poll.
The recipients for the NCAA Division III/NAIA/other colleges were the Central Baptist College (Conway) men and the Lyon College women.
The CBC men finished 23-12; 14-8 and 14-8 in the American Midwest Conference, finishing the regular season in a four-way tie for third. The Mustangs won a National Christian College Athletic Association regional, then went 1-2 in the national tournament.
The Lyon College women finished 28-6; 21-3 in the AMC, which tied them for second. The Pipers were runner-up the the AMC tournament, then lost in second round of national tournament.