UCLA and USC are moving from the Pac-12 Conference to the Big Ten Conference in a shift that will dramatically re-shape the college sports landscape.
The Trojans and Bruins will leave for the Big Ten Conference in 2024. The move will include all sports, except beach volleyball.
"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. "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."
UCLA and USC have been members of the Pac-12 Conference for nearly a century. The Bruins and Trojans are moving from one storied athletic conference on the West Coast to another based in Chicago with schools primarily in the Midwest.
The Big Ten schools include the Universities of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Wisconsin, as well as Michigan State, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, and Rutgers.
Maryland and Rutgers were the last full members to join in 2016. Nebraska joined the Big Ten in 2011.
The departure of two flagship members is a significant blow to the Pac-12 Conference. The move comes after the Pac-12's current media rights contracts with Fox and ESPN expire.
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"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 issued a statement confirming the move.
"For the past century, decisions about UCLA Athletics have always been guided by what is best for our student-athletes, first and foremost, and our fans. Our storied athletics program, based in one of the biggest media markets in the nation, has always had unique opportunities and faced unique challenges. In recent years, however, seismic changes in collegiate athletics have made us evaluate how best to support our student-athletes as we move forward."