The NCAA approved the school's request for a reclassification process Thursday. The Flames will play their final FCS season as a member of the Big South this year, compete as a FBS independent in 2018 and be bowl eligible in 2019.
Following in the footsteps of schools such as Coastal Carolina, Appalachian State, and of course Old Dominion, Liberty University is moving it's football program up to the FBS level. The program would have full FBS eligibility, including bowl eligibility, in 2019, when it will be required to play at least five home FBS opponents.
Christopher Newport (1-3) lost its home opener 7-5 to Hampden-Sydney (1-0), which scored all of its runs in the fifth inning. Athletic Director Ian McCaw was recently after being fired from Baylor.
Liberty's football program was established in 1973 and competed in the NAIA for eight seasons before moving up to Division II and later Division I-AA before it was reclassified as the Football Championship Subdivision in 2006.
"This is a very exciting day for Liberty Athletics and our football program". The conference said it was aware of the school's efforts to move up to the FBS.
"This is truly a blessed day from Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior for allowing the vision of our late founder Jerry Falwell, Sr., along with the hard work of President Jerry Falwell to come to fruition!"
Liberty now plays in the Big South in all sports.
Although this had been a rumored move by Liberty for some time, I'm pretty shocked that they're making the leap.
Liberty University, founded in 1971, is the largest private, nonprofit university in the nation, the largest university in Virginia, and the largest Christian university in the world. Conference commissioner Kyle Kallander issued a statement saying: "While logistics of such a move are still to be determined, Big South football remains in great health with the addition of Campbell University in 2018 and the University of North Alabama in 2019".