UPDATE: It’s official. USC and UCLA had their applications to the Big Ten accepted and will begin play in the conference in 2024.
“Over the past three years, we have worked hard to ground our university decisions in what is best for our students,” said USC President Carol L. Folt, in a statement. “With the Big Ten, we are joining a storied conference that shares our commitment to academic excellence and athletic competitiveness, and we are positioning USC and our student-athletes for long-term success and stability amidst the rapidly evolving sports media and collegiate athletics landscapes. We are delighted to begin this new chapter in 2024.”
OFFICIAL: USC will join the Big Ten Conference in 2024.
— USC Trojans (@USC_Athletics) June 30, 2022
“Ultimately, the Big Ten is the best home for USC and Trojan athletics as we move into the new world of collegiate sports,” Athletic Director Mike Bohn said. “We are excited that our values align with the league’s member institutions. We also will benefit from the stability and strength of the conference; the athletic caliber of Big Ten institutions; the increased visibility, exposure, and resources the conference will bring our student-athletes and programs; and the ability to expand engagement with our passionate alumni nationwide.”
UCLA also issued a statement on its decision to move to the Big Ten.
“For our fans, Big Ten membership equates to better television time slots for our road games, but the same number of home games either at the Rose Bowl, in Pauley Pavilion or other UCLA venues. We will make efforts to preserve our traditional regional rivalries and are pleased that our crosstown rival, USC, will also be joining the Big Ten in 2024–25. While we are fierce competitors on the field, we have a rich tradition of collaboration that we look forward to continuing,” a statement from the university read.
𝗕𝗜𝗚 news! UCLA is joining the Big Ten Conference at the start of the 2024-25 season! 👀
— UCLA Athletics (@UCLAAthletics) June 30, 2022
“We recognize these are big changes. We value the talent and dedication of our student-athletes as well as the passion of Bruins fans far and wide. The best way to respect that is to protect our program from the great uncertainty it would face if we did not make this transition. Because of our unique circumstances, we believe this is the right move for the UCLA Bruins and the right time. We hope you will share our enthusiasm as we take this step to preserve the legacy, tradition and high standards that have epitomized the UCLA Bruins for the century that has passed and the centuries that lie ahead.”
College sports are about to get very interesting.
Original: Huge college sporting news has hit the fan, as reports are coming out that USC and UCLA are leaving the PAC-12 to join the Big Ten. Jon Wilner first reported the shocking news, and the information has already lit the social media world on fire, leaving fans puzzled by the move.
Sources tell Wilner that the longtime PAC-12 foes are planning to leave the conference as early as 2024.
With so much conference formation talk throughout college sports, the move by the Trojans and Bruins seems to be a real head-scratcher.
Source: USC and UCLA are planning to leave for the Big Ten as early as 2024. Move *has not been finalized* at the highest levels of power.
— Jon Wilner (@wilnerhotline) June 30, 2022
Wilner continues his tweet by saying the move has not been finalized at the highest levels of powers. One would think the PAC-12 is scrambling for a solution to keeping two of their powerhouse programs in the conference. The travel logistics alone must be nightmare fuel for the UCLA and USC athletic departments. However, this news seems more significant than just USC and UCLA.
The move is just another step closer to college sports being controlled by super conferences, and the PAC-12 looks to be on the outside looking in. With Texas and Oklahoma making the jump to the SEC, the SEC and BIG 10 are in prime position to be conference juggernauts soon.