I will be graduating, in the spring, from a university with a NCAA Division I equestrian team that I've competed on all four years. We did one IHSA show my freshman year, however since then we've only done NCAA matches.
I will likely be attending a graduate school with an IHSA team and was interested in competing in the Alumni category until I noticed that it said that those competing in Alumni must have competed IHSA as an undergraduate.
Are former NCAA riders grandfathered in under this rule? I will be really sad, if not!
Yes, in order to show IHSA an an alumni, you have to have shown in at least one IHSA show as an undergrad.
However, it might be worth asking Karen if there is a NCAA cross-over option. There was not one before, but it would be worth pushing for! However, do note that NCAA competition is very different from IHSA. NCAA only has 4 riding levels in english, whereas IHSA has 9. IHSA Alumni ride based on which level(s) they rode in during undergrad. So, it may be hard to determine what you do/do not qualify for...
Again, worth asking! At a minimum, you could at least join your grad school's team to participate in other eq team activities. Plus, IHSA host schools often need warm-up riders! If you are a confident rider, you have a good chance of getting to ride at the IHSA shows (for free!) in that you'd help warm up the horses.
In my old region, there was ony 1 Alumi Flat and 1 Alumni Fences class at an IHSA show, so it didn't matter what division you rode in IHSA as everyone rode in one class. Last I checked, Alumni had to at least have ridden Novice level and have had 6 months instruction over fences, but, I could be wrong about that. It was pretty cut and dry about having had to do at least one IHSA show to be an Alumni, but, maybe you could follow up on the Varsity connection.
How alumni show varies by region. I showed a few times in a region where there was only one alumni flat and one alumni fences class. Anyone who rode in at least 1 IHSA show as an undergrad (any level) was eligible for the flat class. In order to do the fences as well you had to have ridden at novice or above, and be receiving some sort of regular riding instruction. The alumni fences typically ran on the novice horses over the novice course, but sometimes it ran over the intermediate course on those horses. The alumni at the time were split between those who did the flat only and didn't really show elsewhere, and former open riders who wanted to go to nationals.
I do know from a friend who showed in a different region as an alumni, that at least where she was they just put alumni into the regular classes in their division.
The NCAA doesn't have any riding levels. There are 4 disciplines - equitation o/f, equitation on the flat, horsemanship (western), and reining. There are no levels within these disciplines though.
Yep. NCAA be closest to IHSA's Open level, but even then, NCAA fences can go up to 3'6", whereas open at IHSA is only 3', I think.
Anyway, thanks for all of the info. I think IHSA would sort of be cutting off their nose to spite their face by not allowing former NCAA riders to participate, but I guess we'll find out what the official verdict is.
I don't think there's any "cutting off one's nose" here.
There also may not be a precedent for the cross-over. NCAA equestrian hasn't been around all that long.
The current rule is you must have competed IHSA, I believe - as others have noted. But, that doesn't mean there can't be a rule change. The BOD meeting comes up in the very beginning of January. So, if you're truly interested, I'd get in touch with Karen to see if there can be a rule change discussed.