From Liberty University: Liberty received notification today that the NCAA has approved its request to enter into the Football Bowl Subdivision reclassification process. Liberty University submitted the waiver with the NCAA in January, requesting relief to enter into the two-year FBS reclassification process without an invitation to join a FBS conference. The NCAA academic and membership affairs staff approved the request after seeking feedback from the NCAA Division I Strategic Vision and Planning Committee, the NCAA Division I Football Oversight Committee and the NCAA office of legal affairs. The NCAA waiver approval was based upon Liberty providing substantial information demonstrating its readiness to begin the reclassification process, Liberty’s ability to follow current FBS institutions who have demonstrated viability without a conference affiliation and the university’s ability to satisfy FBS requirements. Starting with the 2017-18 academic year, Liberty’s football program will begin the two-year FBS reclassification process. Liberty will compete as a FBS independent during the 2018 season, which includes having three FBS home games. The football program will be bowl eligible starting with the 2019 season and will be required to play at least five home FBS opponents.
History of Liberty University Athletics and its Football Program:
Liberty fielded its first athletics program during the 1972-73 academic year (men’s basketball) and played its first season of football in 1973.
Liberty quickly climbed the collegiate athletics ranks, moving from the NCCAA level (National Christian Collegiate Athletic Association) to gaining full NCAA Division I status in 1988.
Liberty’s football program joined the Big South Conference in 2002 and has won eight conference titles (2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2016).
Liberty made its first-ever NCAA FCS Playoff appearance in 2014 where the Flames advanced to the second round of the playoffs.