The Arizona Wildcats, Arizona State Sun Devils, and Utah Utes will leave the Pac-12 and join the Big 12 in 2024, per a report from Brett McMurphy of Action Network.
The trio of schools would bring the total number departing the Pac-12 Conference in the last week to six. The Colorado Buffaloes were the first and officially announced a move to the Big 12 Conference on July 27.
Earlier on Friday evening, the Big Ten Conference officially announced that the Oregon Ducks and Washington Huskies will join in 2024. They will join the UCLA Bruins and USC Trojans, which was officially announced last summer.
Arizona and Arizona State have been members of the Pac-12 Conference since 1978, which was then named the Pac-8 and changed to Pac-10 with the new additions. Utah joined the Pac-10 in 2011, along with Colorado, which resulted in the conference name changing to Pac-12.
With the addition of Oregon, Washington, USC, and UCLA, the Big Ten will expand to a total of 18 members spanning states from coast-to-coast.
The Big 12 currently stands at 14 members, but will lose both Oklahoma and Texas to the SEC next season. With Colorado, Arizona, Arizona State, and Utah joining, the Big 12 will increase to 16 members in 2024, the same as the SEC.
Brett McMurphy reported on the reasons why the four Pac-12 schools are bolting to the Big 12.
Arizona, Arizona State and Utah — like Colorado — opted to move to the Big 12, sources said, because of the Big 12’s stability and a more lucrative financial outlook under commissioner Brett Yormark. Also, the uncertainty of the Pac-12’s future without USC and UCLA and the inability of Pac-12 commissioner George Kliavkoff to secure a new Grant of Rights deal played a role.
With all of the moves to the Big Ten and Big 12, the Pac-12 will be left with only four schools — California, Oregon State, Stanford, and Washington State. Here’s more from Brett McMurphy on their future.
With additional schools leaving the Pac-12, the Mountain West would “be open” to adding remaining Pac-12 schools to the league, sources told Action Network.
The Mountain West currently has a linear television deal with FOX and CBS Sports Network with additional games on CBS through the 2025 season. Another possibility for the Mountain West, depending on how many schools are remaining in the Pac-12, could be a merger of some type between the two leagues, a source said.
College football realignment rolls on and, as usual, it’s about the revenue from television deals.