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Houston, Cincinnati and UCF Set To Join Big 12

Houston, Cincinnati and UCF are all planning to leave the American Athletic Conference for the Big 12 for the 2023-24 school year, according to Jon Rothstein of FanDuel.

“While several sources directly connected to Houston, Cincinnati, and UCF told FanDuel that there are still many logistical things to work through in order to join the Big 12 in 2023, all three programs are still operating with the notion that the upcoming 22-23 season will be their last year in the American Athletic Conference,” Rothstein reported.

Those three schools will arrive at the same time as BYU, which already announced it is joining the Big 12 for the 2023-24 school year. BYU currently competes in the West Coast Conference.

Houston, Cincinnati and UCF are in discussions with the AAC about exit fees, which are assessed whenever a team leaves a conference.

“AAC bylaws require programs who are members of the conference to give a 27-month notice before they leave and pay a $10 million buyout fee,” Rothstein wrote.

As an aside, Texas and Oklahoma are leaving the Big 12 for the SEC, but that won’t happen until 2025. So the Big 12 will actually have 14 teams in both football and men’s basketball for the 2023-24 and 2024-25 academic seasons.

A source told Rothstein the Big 12 is already planning for that possibility with some “preliminary scheduling.”

Written by Sam Amico

Sam Amico is the assistant managing editor-newsdesk at OutKick. He is also the co-founder and senior writer at, and has covered the NBA for nearly 20 years, including his time at Sports Illustrated, FOX Sports and CBS Sports. A native of Akron, Ohio, his writing career began in Wyoming.

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