The college football landscape is about to experience its second massive shift in as many years.
Approximately 11 months after Texas and Oklahoma made waves by preparing to leave the Big 12 for the SEC, USC and UCLA are exploring a similarly seismic move with a move from the Pac-12 for the Big Ten as soon as 2024, according to multiple reports.
Pac-12 insider Jon Wilner was the first to report the potential transfer of college football powers, clarifying the move “has not been finalized” and talks are ongoing.
After Wilner’s report, several insiders confirmed the veracity of the plans, which would continue the consolidation of power across college football.
The Big 12 responded to losing Texas and Oklahoma by adding Group of Five wonders Cincinnati, Houston, UCF, and BYU. Whether the Pac-12 tries to fill out its ranks by similar means — or if more teams flock to the Big Ten — will be one of the biggest storylines going into the 2022 college football season.
Source: USC and UCLA are planning to leave for the Big Ten as early as 2024. Move *has not been finalized* at the highest levels of power.
— Jon Wilner (@wilnerhotline) June 30, 2022
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College football as an institution is in a state of flux. As name, image, and likeness conversations continue along with the transfer portal, these conference realignments illustrate a change in philosophy across the sport. If and when this becomes official (and it has a long way to get there), the Pac-12 will have to respond.
The Big Ten, of course, still has to approve the move and there’s always the question of money. But the wheels that have been set in motion are going to be hard to slow down.
Here’s the latest on USC and UCLA’s potential moves to the Big Ten.
Big Ten news: Latest updates on USC, UCLA joining conference
This section will be updated as updates to the change come in.
While a given, Ross Delenger makes the salient point that conferences that aren’t the Big Ten or SEC now need to keep a close eye on their prestige schools. He names Oregon, Clemson, Florida State, and North Carolina asa specific targets. Stanford could also be a sleeper in that category.
Conferences outside the B1G & SEC with member teams that are attractive – hi rev, athletic success, big markets – should be worried those teams will leave for the new Power 2.
Would imagine that includes more Pac-12 teams such as Oregon, and ACC teams such as Clemson, FSU & UNC.
— Ross Dellenger (@RossDellenger) June 30, 2022