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Mid-South Games Good News for ASU, Clemson

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Mid-South Games Good News for ASU, Clemson

Arkansas State v Davenport - they never stopped playing each other, but there latest move makes ASU a conference affiliate. Steven Zomberg photo.

Arkansas State and Clemson will be playing against Mid-South DIA opponents this coming 2016-17 season, but it won't be a full five-team conference just yet.

While ASU agreeing to play Life, Lindenwood, and Davenport once again signals a return to the Red Wolves' former conference, they will remain an affiliate member for at least this year, with no expectation of postseason play. Clemson, meanwhile, is looking to fill the program's schedule after the dismantling of the ACRL 15s season. Both Arkansas State and Clemson have stated they are committed to the Varsity Cup, and so wouldn't be expecting to be in the DIA playoffs, anyway.

The Mid-South will run a slightly unbalanced schedule, with Life, Lindenwood, and Davenport playing each other twice, and ASU and Clemson once - six games for each of those three teams. ASU and Clemson will play each other twice, and the other three once, for a total of five games for those teams.

Still it's an important step, in part because both Arkansas State and Clemson are realizing that a meaningful and challenging schedule is what gets you ready for the postseason. The Red Wolves, especially, seemed a little under-cooked for the spring of 2016, and will relish the additional challenge of those five conference games. Meanwhile, the three teams expected to push for DIA playoff spots - Life, Lindenwood (assuming they can), and Davenport will have more league games on which they can be judged.

If all goes well, certainly it seems that the Mid-South could grow even more next year.