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University of Houston to join Big 12 in summer of 2023

The school announced Friday morning that they've reached an agreement to leave the American Athletic Conference on July 1, 2023.

HOUSTON — We now know when the University of Houston will leave the American Athletic Conference to join the Big 12

The Cougars, along with Cincinnati and the University of Central Florida, reached an agreement with the American Athletic Conference to leave on July 1, 2023, which will pave the way for them to join the ranks of Oklahoma, Texas, Texas Tech, Baylor, TCU and the rest of the the Big 12.

Oklahoma and Texas are expected to move to the SEC by 2025.

UH says they'll start competing as a member of the Big 12 in all sports in the 2023-2024 school year.

Editor's note: Video above is of fans' reaction last year when Houston was rumored to be joining the Big 12.

Houston, Cincinnati and UCF announced in September they had accepted invitations to join the Big 12, which moved quickly to a rebuild its membership after Texas and Oklahoma revealed they planned to leave for the SEC.

Along with the addition of BYU in 2023, the Big 12 is set to be a 14-team conference for two years.

“We look forward to finishing strong in The American next year before starting a new era of Houston Athletics in the Big 12. The competition will be fierce, but we are primed and ready to accept the challenge,” said UH President Renu Khator in a release. “I’m grateful to AAC Commissioner Mike Aresco and his staff for their professionalism during our discussions. And while I look back with great pride on all we’ve accomplished over the last decade, I’m eager to set the bar even higher.”

"All three institutions (Houston, UCF and Cincinnati) enjoyed tremendous success under the American Athletic Conference banner, and all three were instrumental in taking the conference "to great heights, both athletically and academically," AAC commissioner Mike Aresco said. "We wish them the best and look forward to having them compete in our conference in 2022-23.”

The American Athletic Conference requires its members give more than two years' notice before they can leave the conference.

The new-look AAC is also preparing to have 14 teams in 2023, with six schools from Conference USA having already accepted invitations. Charlotte, Florida Atlantic, North Texas, Rice, UAB and UTSA were all targeting 2023 to make the switch from C-USA to the American.

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