Joplin, Mo. -- The NCAA has announced that Missouri Southern State University and the Joplin Sports Authority have been named one of four finalists to host the NCAA Cross Country National Championships.
MSSU is one of four finalists to host the cross country national championships at some point during the years of 2014 and 2017. Evansville, Indiana, Louisville, Kentucky and Saint Leo, Florida were also announced as finalists.
Missouri Southern has hosted the national championships at the MSSU Cross Country Course three times, once in 1999, and again in 2007 and last year (2012).
"This recognition by the NCAA again shows the National Office and the Committee's confidence in our staff and our course here at Missouri Southern," said MSSU Director of Athletics Jared Bruggeman. "To have hosted a national championship what will be three times in the past ten years speaks volumes about our staff, the city of Joplin and the student-athletes that come out each year and volunteer their services to help host what I think is one of the best championship experiences anyone in any sport can have."
Joplin Sports Authority Director Craig Hull echoed Bruggeman's enthusiasm.
"Missouri Southern's tradition of producing a first-class championship event and challenging cross country course are the strengths behind the bid to host this championship," Hull said. "The Joplin Sports Authority is confident Joplin and Missouri Southern will be selected as one of the host locations."
The NCAA will announce the host sites for the 2014-15 through 2017-18 National Championships on Dec. 11, 2013. If you are interested in the seeing the entire list of finalists click here.