ASUN conference to add Robert Morris as affiliate member in 2022


Men’s lacrosse will join the brand-new ASUN Conference next season. Photo Credit: Megan Frey

By Nathan Breisinger, Editor-in-Chief

Although the Robert Morris men’s lacrosse team will play its 2021 spring campaign as an independent, on Friday, the Department of Athletics announced that the program will be joining the ASUN Conference as an affiliate member starting with the 2022 season.

Formerly known as the Atlantic Sun Conference, the ASUN will include Air Force, Bellarmine, Cleveland State, Detroit Mercy, RMU, and Utah. The ASUN will partner with the Southern Conference (SoCon).

The Colonials will carry over several long withstanding rivalries into the ASUN. This season, RMU will compete against Bellarmine in which their long series will continue in their new conference next season. Overall, the Colonials are 6-7 against the Knights and will play them on Feb. 23 before joining their new conference. Bellarmine is currently a member of the SoCon.

Air Force and RMU will also face off against each other more often in the ASUN. A current SoCon member, Air Force has split their four games with Robert Morris across their program history. These two teams will match up on March 13 in Colorado Springs.

Along with Robert Morris, Cleveland State and Utah are presently independent programs that will join forces in the ASUN next season. The Colonials will face off against both programs later this season. Cleveland State and RMU have competed twice in their history, while the Colonials and the Utes have never stepped on the same field before, but will play each other on May 1 of this season.

Detroit Mercy is the lone team from the new conference that will not see the Colonials this season. Historically, the Colonials have fared well against the Titans, winning seven out of eight meetings.

While Robert Morris prepares to join their new conference, they say farewell to an 11-year stint in the Northeast Conference. Over the years, Robert Morris posted a 33-22 record within NEC play. They claimed the 2012 regular-season crown as well as winning back-to-back NEC Tournament championships in 2018 and 2019.

As a result of their NEC Tournament championships, the Colonials appeared in two consecutive NCAA Tournaments. During their two tournament showings, the Colonials won a single game, coming against Canisius in 2018.

Robert Morris, led by head coach Andrew McMinn, embarks on his tenth season at the men’s lacrosse program’s helm. The Pittsburgh native won two NEC Coach of the Year honors in 2012 and 2017.

As Robert Morris commences its 2021 spring schedule, the Colonials will have their eyes set on their matchups with their future ASUN foes this season.