University Equestrian Teams Get Ready for NCEA National Championship in Waco, TX

RELEASE: April 11, 2012

Lexington, KY
- The nation’s best collegiate teams have gathered in Waco, TX this week with a common goal, to become the NCEA National Champion. Competition at the Extraco Events Center in both the Western and Hunter Seat disciplines gets underway at 8:30amCT Thursday and concludes with the crowning of an overall national champion team at approximately 5:30pmCT on Saturday.

The University of Georgia enters the competition as the number one ranked team in the country with an 11-3 record and first team All Americans in both disciplines (Carly Anthony for Hunter Seat Equitation on the Flat and Megan Hawkins for Western Horsemanship). The Bulldogs success during the regular season did not, however, manage to earn them a single top seed at the Championship. They are still in strong position with #3 seeds in both brackets but they face stiff competition from Texas A&M, the Western #1 seed and three time defending Western National Champion, and Auburn, the Hunter Seat #1 seed and defending Hunter Seat and Overall National Champion.

Nothing is guaranteed at the NCEA Championship though and Oklahoma State and South Carolina (the number two and three teams respectively in the season-ending coaches poll) head into the weekend red hot. The Oklahoma State Cowgirls are coming off a win over Texas A&M in the Big 12 Championship final and South Carolina recently dealt Georgia it’s second home loss in history to win the Southern Equestrian Championship.

 Complete Hunter Seat Bracket

 Complete Western Bracket:

How it Works

12 teams compete in each discipline at the NCEA Championship but only 11 universities have qualified both Hunter Seat and Western teams. Those universities are:

Oklahoma State
South Carolina
Texas A&M
Kansas State
New Mexico State
Texas Christian
Fresno State

Those 11 schools are eligible for the overall NCEA championship.

Southern Methodist University will compete in only the Hunter Seat tournament and South Dakota State will compete in only the Western tournament. Because they have qualified teams in only one discipline neither of those two schools is eligible to win the overall NCEA Championship.

The champion Hunter Seat team will be awarded the USEF Perpetual Trophy and the champion Western team will be awarded the AQHA perpetual trophy.

To decide the overall national champion a points system based on placment in both disciplines is used. After competition is over points are awarded in Western and Hunter Seat to the top 8 teams (the breakdown fore each goes like this: 1st= 36 points, 2nd =28 points, 3rd=21 points, etc).The team that has the highest combined placement score will win the overall NCEA Championship.

Live Webcast

The American Quarter Horse Association will be broadcasting the NCEA Championship live via web-cast at

For more about the NCEA Championship visit