Texas, Oklahoma formally ask for SEC invitation starting in 2025

College Sports

Chris Del Conte smiles during a news conference where he was introduced at the new vice president and athletics director for the University of Texas, Monday, Dec. 11, 2017, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Presidents from both the University of Texas at Austin and the Univerisity of Oklahoma sent a letter Tuesday asking for admission to the Southeastern Conference in 2025.

The letter, signed by UT President Jay Hartzell and OU President Joseph Harroz Jr., requests invitations for both schools to join the powerhouse college athletics conference starting on July 1, 2025. The joint letter reads, in part, “We believe that there would be mutual benefit to the Universities on the one hand, and the SEC on the other hand, for the Universities to become members of the SEC.”

In a statement released on Twitter, SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey called the schools “esteemed academic institutions with storied athletic programs.”

“While the SEC has not proactively sought new members, we will pursue significant change when there is a clear consensus among our members that such action would further enrich the experiences of our student-athletes and lead to greater academic and athletic achievement across our campuses,” the statement reads.

On Monday, both schools told the Big 12 Conference about their plans for the future, saying they would honor a rights agreement through its expiration date in 2025, but no further.

Bob Bowlsby, the Big 12 Conference commissioner, said the conference members are “disappointed.”

Although our eight members are disappointed with the decisions of these two institutions, we recognize that intercollegiate athletics is experiencing rapid change and will most likely look much different in 2025 than it does currently. The Big 12 Conference will continue to support our member institutions’ efforts to graduate student-athletes, and compete for Big 12 and NCAA championships. Like many others, we will use the next four years to fully assess what the landscape will look like in 2025 and beyond. The remaining eight institutions will work together in a collaborative manner to thoughtfully and strategically position the Big 12 Conference for continued success, both athletically and academically, long into the future.

Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby

The UT Board of Regents is set to meet Friday to discuss the potential move, as is the OU Board of Regents.

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