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Report: Cincinnati, UCF, Houston Reach Agreement With AAC to Join Big 12 in 2023

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It’s official, the Big 12 will welcome three American Athletic Conference programs to the conference for early entry of the 2023 season.

In addition to independent BYU, The University of Cincinnati, University of Central Florida and University of Houston have all came to an agreement with the AAC to exit the conference and join the Big 12 on July 1, 2023. The report was first given by Max Olson of The Athletic. 

The buyout amount for Cincinnati, UCF and Houston has not been announced yet. BYU is also planning on joining the Big 12 in July 2023, which would bring the conference to 14 teams.

On April 27, CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein reported that the three AAC schools were planning on joining for the 2023-24 academic year.

Rothstein also reported this past week that since Oklahoma and Texas are still planning on heading to the SEC in 2025, the Big 12 will stay at 18 conference games from 2023-25. Each team will likely play eight teams once and five teams twice.

Cincinnati, UCF, Houston and BYU were formally invited to the Big 12 Conference back in September 2021. The Big 12 needed to start thinking about creating a future plan without Oklahoma and Texas, who are set to join the SEC once the current Big 12 TV contract expires in 2025. All three AAC programs are under the notion that they will be joining the Big 12 for the 2023-24 academic year.

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Ethan Bock is pursuing his bachelor’s degree in journalism at WVU. He currently is an intern with the Final Fourcast podcast. Ethan has covered WVU football and men’s basketball for the last year. He is from Cincinnati, Ohio.

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