The Western Athletic Conference (WAC) announced on Thursday that four Texas institutions will officially join in 2021, one year earlier than previously announced.
Last week, the WAC announced a return to football at the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) level beginning in 2022. Four schools from the Southland Conference were revealed as future members — Abilene Christian, Lamar, Sam Houston State, and Stephen F. Austin.
Due to a vote by the remaining Southland Conference schools, Abilene Christian, Lamar, Sam Houston State, and Stephen F. Austin will now depart the Southland this year and will officially join the WAC on July 1, 2021.
“The WAC is excited to have the opportunity to welcome four of our five new institutions to the conference a year earlier than anticipated,” said Western Athletic Conference Commissioner Jeff Hurd. “The level of excitement in Houston last week was wonderful and we are pleased to be able to officially bring the institutions in to the league for the next academic year.”
Southern Utah of the Big Sky Conference plans to keep its entry date into the WAC on July 1, 2022.
Two other schools, Dixie State and Tarleton State, will also join the WAC football lineup this fall rather than in 2022, the WAC has confirmed to FBSchedules.com.
Dixie State and Tarleton State are current members of the WAC in other sports, but their football programs are currently Independents. Both schools will be playing their first season at the FCS level this spring as Independents before they move to the WAC this summer.