Report: USC, UCLA Leaving Pac-12 for Big Ten As Soon As 2024
Your move, SEC.
The Big Ten has reportedly made the latest chess move in the college football arms race by poaching USC and UCLA from the Pac-12. The news was broken Thursday by Jon Wilner, who's regarded among the media as one of the best-connected people covering the Pac-12.
The move would represent a strong counter by the Big Ten to the SEC's transformation in a mega-conference through the acquisition of Oklahoma and Texas. With USC and UCLA, the Big Ten will also have 16 members and will stretch geographically literally from coast to coast.
Both of the California schools would bring considerable financial heft, academic prestige, and athletic clout to the Big Ten. USC, although substandard of late, is a traditional football power with extensive resources and a large fanbase. UCLA isn't as renown for football, but its basketball program is a Blue Blood, and it's one of the most-preferred schools in America.
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By adding USC and UCLA, the Big Ten would grow its media empire substantially. The additions add the nation's second-largest media market to the Big Ten's footprint, which would translate to many additional millions of dollars through TV revenue.
The move also would create some some awkward bedfellows, though. Last year, in the wake of the SEC adding Oklahoma and Texas, the Big Ten entered into a scheduling partnership with the Pac-12 and the ACC to battle the SEC for TV dollars. Called "The Alliance," the partnership was set to begin with the 2025 college football season.