As expected, the Big 12 Conference has extended membership invitations to four schools to join the league. The conference’s Board of Directors, made up of the presidents and chancellors of the leagues’ schools, voted Friday morning to extend membership invitations to Brigham Young University, the University of Central Florida, the University of Cincinnati, and the University of Houston to join the Conference.
The vote was conducted in accordance with Big 12 Conference Bylaw 1.5.2.b.3 requiring an affirmative vote of a supermajority of Directors, and was approved unanimously by the eight continuing members, making the votes of Texas and Oklahoma irrelevant.
The four schools are expected to begin play in the league in the fall of 2023. BYU has already announced it will join the conference for competition in all sports in that year. The Cougars are an independent in football and a member of the West Coast Conference in all other sports.
Central Florida, Cincinnati and Houston, members of the American Athletic Conference, are required to give a 27-month departure notice and pay a $10 million buyout fee. Today’s announcement comes 25 months before the start of the 2023 season, so some accommodation – likely an additional buyout fee – would have to be worked out to allow those schools to leave the AAC and join the Big 12 in time for the start of the 2023-23 season.
As necessary, institutional Boards will be in session today to act on Big 12 Conference membership. Videoconference announcements with Big 12 Board of Directors Chairman and Texas Tech University President Lawrence Schovanec, Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby, and campus representatives are scheduled today at the following times:
Houston – 11:00 a.m. CT
BYU – 11:30 a.m. CT
UCF – 2:45 p.m. CT
Cincinnati – 3:30 p.m. CT