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Men’s NAIA Track and Field Colleges and Rankings

While many student-athletes and their families have heard of playing college sports at the NCAA level, they’re often surprised that another regulatory body exists—the NAIA. The National Association for Intercollegiate Athletics is actually the oldest college athletics governing body in the U.S. More than 250 schools are part of the NAIA; these are comprised of mostly smaller private colleges. However, despite being lesser known than its NCAA counterpart, more than 60,000 athletes compete at NAIA schools in a number of sports, including men’s track and field.

Student-athletes who compete at an NAIA member institution are in good company: NAIA track and field programs are similar to those at the NCAA D3 level in terms of a student-athlete’s overall experience, while top NAIA track and field colleges have been compared athletically to the NCAA D2 level! Unlike their D3 counterparts, NAIA programs award both athletic and academic scholarships, making NAIA schools a cost-effective option for student-athletes who excel in their sport and in the classroom.

Just how much athletic aid do NAIA programs offer? Each year more than $500 million in athletic scholarships is awarded to student-athletes who compete at the NAIA level. There are typically 12 track and field scholarships offered per team. Like track and field scholarships offered at the NCAA level, these scholarships are not guaranteed for all four years and need to be renewed at the college coach’s discretion based on a qualified athlete’s performance and academic standing.

Student-athletes who are interested in competing at a high level shouldn’t limit their college lists to those at the NCAA level. Instead, they should also start to consider NAIA track and field colleges, too. One of the best parts of the NAIA recruiting process is that college coaches do not have to follow the NCAA rules, making themselves much more accessible to student-athletes at any stage in the recruiting process. NAIA coaches aren’t restricted in when they can and cannot communicate with potential recruits, so student-athletes can initiate contact with an NAIA coach at any time in the recruiting process.

How many men’s NAIA track and field schools are there? 

There are nearly 200 NAIA track and field colleges across the U.S. Of those, 149 schools offer men’s indoor track and field programs, while 186 schools offer either an outdoor track and field program or both indoor and outdoor programs. Indoor track programs often compete in the winter season, while outdoor track and field programs are in full swing during the spring.

NAIA track and field rankings 

Several organizations offer NAIA track and field rankings throughout both indoor and outdoor seasons, including the NAIA, the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association, and the Track & Field Results Reporting System. Here are the top NAIA colleges for track and field according to the NCSA Power Rankings, which factor in graduate rates, average cost after aid and other important data, aside from athletic rankings, that help student-athletes make their best college decision:

  1. Loyola University New Orleans
  2. Bethel University – Indiana
  3. The College of Idaho
  4. University of Michigan – Dearborn
  5. Asbury University
  6. Indiana Wesleyan University
  7. Concordia University – Nebraska 
  8. College of the Ozarks
  9. Robert Morris University – Illinois
  10. Taylor University

Check out NCSA's Power Rankings of top NAIA track and field colleges.

Find the complete NAIA track and field rankings here.

NAIA track and field colleges

School
City and State
Region
Conference
Division
Pippa Passes, KENTUCKY
Mid East
River States Conference  
NAIA  
Grand Rapids, MICHIGAN
Great Lakes
Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Phoenix, ARIZONA
South West
Central States Football League  
NAIA  
Wilmore, KENTUCKY
Mid East
River States Conference  
NAIA  
Ave Maria, FLORIDA
South East
Sun Conference  
NAIA  
Kansas City, MISSOURI
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Muskogee, OKLAHOMA
Mid South
Central States Football League  
NAIA  
Baldwin City, KANSAS
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Bellevue, NEBRASKA
Mid West
North Star Athletic Association  
NAIA  
Atchison, KANSAS
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Mesa, ARIZONA
South West
California Pacific Conference  
NAIA  
Lindsborg, KANSAS
Mid West
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
North Newton, KANSAS
Mid West
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Mishawaka, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Crossroads League  
NAIA  
McKenzie, TENNESSEE
Mid East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Blue Mountain, MISSISSIPPI
Mid South
Southern States Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Bluefield, VIRGINIA
Mid East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Owensboro, KENTUCKY
Mid East
River States Conference  
NAIA  
Mount Vernon, GEORGIA
South East
Southern States Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Sioux City, IOWA
Mid West
Great Plains Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Dayton, TENNESSEE
Mid East
Appalachian Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Vallejo, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
California Pacific Conference  
NAIA  
Whiting, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Campbellsville, KENTUCKY
Mid East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Milwaukee, WISCONSIN
Great Lakes
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Pittsburgh, PENNSYLVANIA
North East
River States Conference  
NAIA  
Helena, MONTANA
North West
Frontier Conference  
NAIA  
Conway, ARKANSAS
Mid South
American Midwest Conference  
NAIA  
McPherson, KANSAS
Mid West
Sooner Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Fayette, MISSOURI
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Cincinnati, OHIO
Great Lakes
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Orangeburg, SOUTH CAROLINA
South East
Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Dubuque, IOWA
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Howell, MICHIGAN
Great Lakes
Association of Independent Institutions  
NAIA  
Rutland, VERMONT
New England
Yankee Small College Conference (YSCC)  
NAIA  
Point Lookout, MISSOURI
Mid West
Association of Independent Institutions  
NAIA  
Columbia, MISSOURI
Mid West
American Midwest Conference  
NAIA  
Columbia, SOUTH CAROLINA
South East
(NAIA)  
NAIA  
Ann Arbor, MICHIGAN
Great Lakes
Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Seward, NEBRASKA
Mid West
Great Plains Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Salem, OREGON
West Coast
Cascade Collegiate Conference  
NAIA  
Grand Rapids, MICHIGAN
Great Lakes
Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Paragould, ARKANSAS
Mid South
Association of Independent Institutions  
NAIA  
Canton, MISSOURI
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Lebanon, TENNESSEE
Mid East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Madison, SOUTH DAKOTA
North West
North Star Athletic Association  
NAIA  
Mitchell, SOUTH DAKOTA
North West
Great Plains Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Dickinson, NORTH DAKOTA
North West
North Star Athletic Association  
NAIA  
New Orleans, LOUISIANA
Mid South
Gulf Coast Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Crete, NEBRASKA
Mid West
Great Plains Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Sioux Center, IOWA
Mid West
Great Plains Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
La Grande, OREGON
West Coast
Frontier Conference  
NAIA  
Jacksonville, FLORIDA
South East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Prescott, ARIZONA
South West
California Pacific Conference  
NAIA  
Springfield, MISSOURI
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Olympia, WASHINGTON
West Coast
Cascade Collegiate Conference  
NAIA  
Nashville, TENNESSEE
Mid East
Association of Independent Institutions  
NAIA  
Temple Terrace, FLORIDA
South East
Southern States Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Miami Gardens, FLORIDA
South East
Sun Conference  
NAIA  
Hialeah, FLORIDA
South East
Association of Independent Institutions  
NAIA  
Henderson, TENNESSEE
Mid East
American Midwest Conference  
NAIA  
Wichita, KANSAS
Mid West
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Georgetown, KENTUCKY
Mid East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Goshen, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Crossroads League  
NAIA  
University Park, ILLINOIS
Great Lakes
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Winona Lake, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Crossroads League  
NAIA  
Lamoni, IOWA
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Des Moines, IOWA
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Hannibal, MISSOURI
Mid West
American Midwest Conference  
NAIA  
Lawrence, KANSAS
Mid West
Association of Independent Institutions  
NAIA  
Hastings, NEBRASKA
Mid West
Great Plains Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Notre Dame, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Fullerton, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
Golden State Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Huntington, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Crossroads League  
NAIA  
Austin, TEXAS
Mid South
Red River Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Fort Wayne, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Richmond, INDIANA
Great Lakes
River States Conference  
NAIA  
Kokomo, INDIANA
Great Lakes
River States Conference  
NAIA  
Gary, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Association of Independent Institutions  
NAIA  
South Bend, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Marion, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Crossroads League  
NAIA  
Hawkins, TEXAS
Mid South
Red River Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Siloam Springs, ARKANSAS
Mid South
Sooner Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
North Miami, FLORIDA
South East
SUN Conference  
NAIA  
Elgin, ILLINOIS
Great Lakes
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Salina, KANSAS
Mid West
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
West Palm Beach, FLORIDA
South East
Florida Sun Conference  
NAIA  
Grayson, KENTUCKY
Mid East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Riverside, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
California Pacific Conference  
NAIA  
Langston, OKLAHOMA
Mid South
Red River Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Southfield, MICHIGAN
Great Lakes
Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Lewiston, IDAHO
North West
Frontier Conference  
NAIA  
Lincoln, ILLINOIS
Great Lakes
Association of Independent Institutions  
NAIA  
Belleville, ILLINOIS
Great Lakes
American Midwest Conference (NAIA)  
NAIA  
Columbia, KENTUCKY
Mid East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Shreveport, LOUISIANA
Mid South
Red River Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Sylvania, OHIO
Great Lakes
Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
New Orleans, LOUISIANA
Mid South
Southern States Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Batesville, ARKANSAS
Mid South
Central States Football League  
NAIA  
Livonia, MICHIGAN
Great Lakes
Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Manhattan, KANSAS
Mid West
Member of NCCAA (Division II)  
NAIA  
Indianapolis, INDIANA
Great Lakes
NACC  
NAIA  
Pulaski, TENNESSEE
Mid East
Southern States Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Rancho Palos Verdes, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
California Pacific Conference  
NAIA  
McPherson, KANSAS
Mid West
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Atherton, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
Golden State Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Oklahoma City, OKLAHOMA
Mid South
Sooner Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Olathe, KANSAS
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Fremont, NEBRASKA
Mid West
Great Plains Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Midway, KENTUCKY
Mid East
River States Conference  
NAIA  
Milligan College, TENNESSEE
Mid East
Appalachian Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Saint Louis, MISSOURI
Mid West
American Midwest Conference  
NAIA  
Marshall, MISSOURI
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Havre, MONTANA
North West
Frontier Conference  
NAIA  
Montreat, NORTH CAROLINA
Mid East
Appalachian Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Sioux City, IOWA
Mid West
Great Plains Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Sumter, SOUTH CAROLINA
South East
Mountain East Conference  
NAIA  
Yankton, SOUTH DAKOTA
North West
Great Plains Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Cedar Rapids, IOWA
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Mount Vernon, OHIO
Great Lakes
Crossroads League  
NAIA  
Portland, OREGON
West Coast
Cascade Collegiate Conference  
NAIA  
Stafford, TEXAS
Mid South
NAIA; Red River Conference 2020  
NAIA  
Espanola, NEW MEXICO
South West
Division II Independents  
NAIA  
Eugene, OREGON
West Coast
Cascade Collegiate Conference  
NAIA  
Kirkland, WASHINGTON
West Coast
Cascade Collegiate Conference  
NAIA  
Orange City, IOWA
Mid West
Great Plains Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Bemidji, MINNESOTA
Mid West
Manitoba Colleges Athletic Conference (MCAC), Northern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (NIAC) and the Association of Christian College Athletics (ACCA)  
NAIA  
Circleville, OHIO
Great Lakes
River States Conference  
NAIA  
Oklahoma City, OKLAHOMA
Mid South
Sooner Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Goodwell, OKLAHOMA
Mid South
Central States Football League  
NAIA  
Bartlesville, OKLAHOMA
Mid South
Midlands Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Bourbonnais, ILLINOIS
Great Lakes
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Klamath Falls, OREGON
West Coast
Cascade Collegiate Conference  
NAIA  
Ottawa, KANSAS
Mid West
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Phoenix, ARIZONA
South West
(NAIA) (NCWA - Wrestling)  
NAIA  
San Antonio, TEXAS
Mid South
Red River Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Angwin, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
California Pacific Conference  
NAIA  
Parkville, MISSOURI
Mid West
American Midwest Conference  
NAIA  
Gilbert, ARIZONA
South West
American Midwest Conference  
NAIA  
Dallas, TEXAS
Mid South
Red River Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
DuBois, PENNSYLVANIA
North East
CCAC  
NAIA  
Schuylkill Haven, PENNSYLVANIA
North East
NJCAA; NCWA Wrestling  
NAIA  
Pittsburgh, PENNSYLVANIA
North East
River States Conference  
NAIA  
West Point, GEORGIA
South East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Aberdeen, SOUTH DAKOTA
North West
North Star Athletic Association  
NAIA  
Pasadena, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
California Pacific Conference  
NAIA  
Waleska, GEORGIA
South East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Chicago, ILLINOIS
Great Lakes
Independent Midwest Region  
NAIA  
Rochester Hills, MICHIGAN
Great Lakes
Independent Great Lakes Region  
NAIA  
Billings, MONTANA
North West
Frontier Conference  
NAIA  
Chicago, ILLINOIS
Great Lakes
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Chicago, ILLINOIS
Great Lakes
Crossroads League  
NAIA  
Santee, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
Golden State Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Savannah, GEORGIA
South East
Sun Conference  
NAIA  
Atlanta, GEORGIA
South East
Florida Sun Conference (Division III)  
NAIA  
Portsmouth, OHIO
Great Lakes
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Adrian, MICHIGAN
Great Lakes
Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Incline Village, NEVADA
South West
California Pacific Conference  
NAIA  
Manitowoc, WISCONSIN
Great Lakes
Association of Independent Institutions  
NAIA  
Redding, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
California Pacific Conference  
NAIA  
Lakeland, FLORIDA
South East
Sun Conference  
NAIA  
Ashland, OREGON
West Coast
Frontier Conference  
NAIA  
New Orleans, LOUISIANA
Mid South
Gulf Coast Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Waxahachie, TEXAS
Mid South
Central States Football League  
NAIA  
Bethany, OKLAHOMA
Mid South
Sooner Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Winfield, KANSAS
Mid West
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Spring Arbor, MICHIGAN
Great Lakes
Crossroads League  
NAIA  
Davenport, IOWA
Mid West
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Laurinburg, NORTH CAROLINA
Mid East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Saint Louis, MISSOURI
Mid West
American Midwest Conference  
NAIA  
Miami, FLORIDA
South East
Sun Conference  
NAIA  
Sterling, KANSAS
Mid West
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Hillsboro, KANSAS
Mid West
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Talladega, ALABAMA
South East
Gulf Coast Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Upland, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Crossroads League  
NAIA  
Athens, TENNESSEE
Mid East
Appalachian Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Tyler, TEXAS
Mid South
Central States Football League  
NAIA  
Fort Worth, TEXAS
Mid South
Sooner Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Caldwell, IDAHO
North West
Frontier Conference  
NAIA  
Santa Clarita, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
Golden State Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Crestview Hills, KENTUCKY
Mid East
Presidents' Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Thomasville, GEORGIA
South East
Sun Conference  
NAIA  
Tougaloo, MISSISSIPPI
Mid South
Gulf Coast Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Palos Heights, ILLINOIS
Great Lakes
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Deerfield, ILLINOIS
Great Lakes
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Everett, WASHINGTON
West Coast
SUN Conference  
NAIA  
Cleveland, GEORGIA
South East
Appalachian Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Barbourville, KENTUCKY
Mid East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Unity, MAINE
New England
USCAA  
NAIA  
Lancaster, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
(NAIA DII, Cal Pac)  
NAIA  
Merced, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
California Pacific Conference  
NAIA  
Jamestown, NORTH DAKOTA
North West
North Star Athletic Association  
NAIA  
Augusta, MAINE
New England
YSCAA  
NAIA  
Fort Kent, MAINE
New England
NAIA, Sunrise Conference  
NAIA  
Dearborn, MICHIGAN
Great Lakes
Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Mobile, ALABAMA
South East
Southern States Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Dillon, MONTANA
North West
Frontier Conference  
NAIA  
Pikeville, KENTUCKY
Mid East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Great Falls, MONTANA
North West
Frontier Conference  
NAIA  
Rio Grande, OHIO
Great Lakes
River States Conference  
NAIA  
Fort Wayne, INDIANA
Great Lakes
Crossroads League  
NAIA  
San Marcos, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
California Pacific Conference  
NAIA  
Leavenworth, KANSAS
Mid West
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Chickasha, OKLAHOMA
Mid South
Sooner Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Bluffton, SOUTH CAROLINA
South East
Sun Conference  
NAIA  
Joliet, ILLINOIS
Great Lakes
Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Houston, TEXAS
Mid South
Red River Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Williamsburg, KENTUCKY
Mid East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Hobbs, NEW MEXICO
South West
Red River Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Valley City, NORTH DAKOTA
North West
North Star Athletic Association  
NAIA  
Costa Mesa, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
Golden State Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
La Crosse, WISCONSIN
Great Lakes
North Star Athletic Association  
NAIA  
Denmark, SOUTH CAROLINA
South East
Association of Independent Institutions  
NAIA  
Forest City, IOWA
Mid West
Midwest Collegiate Conference (NAIA)  
NAIA  
Portland, OREGON
West Coast
Cascade Collegiate Conference  
NAIA  
Lake Wales, FLORIDA
South East
Mid-South Conference  
NAIA  
Swannanoa, NORTH CAROLINA
Mid East
Eastern Metro Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Plainview, TEXAS
Mid South
Sooner Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Babson Park, FLORIDA
South East
Sun Conference  
NAIA  
Beckley, WEST VIRGINIA
Mid East
Independent Mid-South Region  
NAIA  
Santa Barbara, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
Golden State Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Wilberforce, OHIO
Great Lakes
Association of Independent Institutions  
NAIA  
Marshall, TEXAS
Mid South
Red River Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Hattiesburg, MISSISSIPPI
Mid South
Southern States Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Rocklin, CALIFORNIA
West Coast
Golden State Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Oskaloosa, IOWA
Mid West
Heart of America Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
Fulton, MISSOURI
Mid West
American Midwest Conference  
NAIA  
Walnut Ridge, ARKANSAS
Mid South
American Midwest Conference  
NAIA  
New Orleans, LOUISIANA
Mid South
Gulf Coast Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
York, NEBRASKA
Mid West
Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference  
NAIA  
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