Writing an article on the best NAIA schools in Arizona can be tough when there are so many options to choose from.

However, if you’re looking for the best place to live, play and study then one of these five NAIA universities in Arizona will probably be a great fit for you.

In this article, we’ll try to show you why they’re great colleges to play sports at and graduate from.

And since you are interested in Athletic schools, why not check out our previous articles on NAIA schools;

These are all excellent options if you’re looking to play college sports while getting an education, so keep reading to find out which one best fits your interests!

What are the different college athletic divisions?

College athletic divisions are based on the size of the institution, the level of competition, and the funding of the athletic program.

There are different college sports divisions such as;

  • The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)
  • The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA)
  • The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA)

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) is an organization that governs and administers intercollegiate athletics.

The NCAA was formed in 1906 to draw up competition and eligibility rules for gridiron football and other intercollegiate sports.

See more:  6 Best Football Colleges In Arkansas - Detailed Guide

The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA)

The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) is a college athletic division that is made up of smaller schools across the United States.

There are about 250 institutions with more than 60,000 student-athletes that are members of the NAIA.

Most of these NAIA schools are privately-owned four-year colleges and they are mostly religiously affiliated.

The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA)

The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) is an organization that governs community colleges, state colleges, and junior college athletics (2-year schools) throughout the United States.

The NJCAA was founded in 1938 with over 500 members in 43 states.

Every year, about 60,000 students participate in 28 different sports and the organization sponsors 48 national championship events and nine football bowl games each year.

What are the Best NAIA Schools in Arizona?

There are five NAIA schools in Arizona, they include; Arizona Christian University, Benedictine University at Mesa, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Ottawa University Arizona, and Park University Gilbert.

Here is a review of some of the best NAIA colleges in Arizona for you to make a more informed decision.

N/B: This is not arranged by any particular ranking order.

Best NAIA Universities in Arizona Teams City Conference
Arizona Christian University Arizona Christian Firestorm Phoenix Golden State
Benedictine University at Mesa Benedictine Mesa Red hawks Mesa Cal Pac
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Prescott Prescott Cal Pac
Ottawa University Arizona Ottawa Spirit Surprise Golden State
Park University Gilbert Park Gilbert Buccaneers Gilbert Cal Pac

Arizona Christian University

Arizona Christian University is a private Christian university in Glendale, Arizona.

It was founded in 1960 as Southern Conservative Baptist Bible College, it is one of the NAIA schools in Arizona that is religiously affiliated.

The Arizona Christian university’s athletic team is called the Firestorm, they compete predominantly in the Golden State Athletic Conference.

Contact school:

Address: 1 W. Firestorm Way, Glendale, AZ 85306, United States.

Phone: +1 602-489-5300.

We also recommend:

Benedictine University at Mesa

Benedictine University at Mesa is one of the top liberal arts schools in Mesa, it is the first four-year Catholic University campus in Arizona.

This institution was founded in 2012, it is also one of the best NAIA universities in Arizona, the athletic team is called the Redhawks.

See more:  Top 15 Best Baptist Colleges in North Carolina

The Redhawks compete predominantly in the California Pacific Conference (CalPac).

The school competes in 15 different collegiate sports, these include;

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Softball
  • Golf
  • Soccer, and
  • Volleyball

Contact school:

Address: 225 E Main St, Mesa, AZ 85201, United States.

Phone: +1 602-888-5500.

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

Embry–Riddle Aeronautical University is one of the top universities in Prescott for students who wish to pursue a Bachelor’s degree or Master’s degree in:

  • Arts
  • Sciences
  • Aviation
  • Business
  • Engineering and security & intelligence

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University is also one of the top athletic colleges in Arizona that is a member of the NAIA, the school’s athletic team is called the Eagles.

The Eagles compete predominantly in the California Pacific Conference (CalPac) and in 14 different sports at the intercollegiate level:

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Volleyball
  • Track & Field (outdoors) and wrestling for men.

Contact school:

Address: 3700 Willow Creek Rd, Prescott, AZ 86301, United States.

Phone: +1 928-777-6600.

Ottawa University Arizona

Ottawa University (OU) is a privately-owned liberal arts university with its main campus in Ottawa, Kansas, and a second residential campus in Surprise.

It is also one of the religiously affiliated NAIA colleges in Arizona, the Ottawa–Arizona campus sports teams are called the Spirit.

The Spirit predominantly competes in the Golden State Athletic Conference (GSAC).

They are also a member of the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA), competing mostly as an independent at the Division I level in the West Region.

Contact school:

Address: 15950 N Civic Center Plaza, Surprise, AZ 85374, United States.

Phone: +1 855-546-1342.

Also read: The Best NAIA Schools in North Carolina For Student-Athletes

Park University Gilbert

Park University Gilbert is a non-private university in Arizona that offers students degree programs in;

  • Public administration
  • Communication
  • Fitness and wellness and
  • Computer science

These classes can be taken either online or in person, the Park University Gilbert is also one of the best athletic training schools in Arizona and a member of the NAIA. 

The athletic teams of the Gilbert campus of Park University (Park–Gilbert) are called the Buccaneers.

The Buccaneers compete predominantly in the California Pacific Conference (Cal Pac) and in 15 different sports at the intercollegiate level:

  • Baseball and basketball
  • Cross country
  • Golf
  • Soccer and softball
  • Track and field (indoor and outdoor), and
  • Volleyball
See more:  10 Best Football Colleges In Illinois - Detailed Guide

Contact school:

Address: 92 W Vaughn Ave #101, Gilbert, AZ 85233, United States.

Phone: +1 480-214-2100

Best NAIA schools in Arizona for basketball [Men & Women]

These are the college athletic schools in Arizona with the best basketball programs that are NAIA affiliated;

  • Arizona Christian University
  • Benedictine University at Mesa
  • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
  • Ottawa University Arizona
  • Park University Gilbert

Best NAIA school in Arizona for football

  • Arizona Christian University
  • Ottawa University Arizona

Best NAIA baseball schools in Arizona

  • Arizona Christian University
  • Benedictine University at Mesa
  • Ottawa University Arizona
  • Park University Gilbert

Best NAIA universities in Arizona for softball

  • Arizona Christian University
  • Benedictine University at Mesa
  • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
  • Ottawa University Arizona
  • Park University Gilbert

Best NAIA colleges in Arizona for soccer [Men & Women]

  • Arizona Christian University
  • Benedictine University at Mesa
  • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
  • Ottawa University Arizona
  • Park University Gilbert

FAQs on NAIA Schools in Arizona

Does Arizona Christian University give athletic scholarships?

Yes, Arizona Christian University does offer athletic scholarships for Football. Athletic scholarships are available for NCAA Division I, NCAA Division II, NAIA, and NJCAA.

Does Benedictine College offer athletic scholarships?

Yes, Benedictine College does offer athletic scholarships for Football. Need-based and academic scholarships are available for student-athletes.

What is the acceptance rate for Park University?

The acceptance rate at Park University is 69%.

Does Embry-Riddle have athletic scholarships?

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University does offer athletic scholarships for Track And Field

Editor’s Recommendations

Conclusion

There are many great NAIA universities in Arizona, but the five schools listed above are some of the best.

If you’re a student-athlete looking for a school that can offer you a great education and athletics experience, any of these five would be a great choice.

Each of these schools has strong athletics programs and academic offerings, making them ideal for student-athletes.

Recommendation

To read more articles about athletic schools, visit our ATHLETIC SCHOOLS category, but if you are just interested in NAIA member schools, visit our NAIA Colleges category.

Good luck! Kindly share this article using the share buttons below, sharing is caring!

Agbai Obasi
Agbai Obasi

Agbai Obasi is the founder of Ziiky.com and related brands; he is currently a master-level student of Information Security Systems Management, managing the security operations of this site; in his spare time, he creates tailored blog contents that speak directly to the needs and interests of students. Visit his website below to stay updated with cybersecurity industry insights, best practices, and more.

Articles: 294

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *