The Houston Cougars announced on Friday that they have accepted the Big 12 Conference’s invitation to join the league, with an eye on playing in the Big 12 as soon as the fall of 2023.
The announcement came shortly after the Big 12 Conference publicly extended invitations to BYU, Cincinnati, Houston and UCF to join the conference.
The invitation and acceptance reunites the Cougars with several former Southwest Conference mates, including Baylor, TCU and Texas Tech. All four were long-standing members of the SWC until it broke up before the formation of the Big 12. The Big 12 accepted Baylor and Texas Tech, while TCU and Houston joined other conferences.
TCU reunited with the Big 12 a decade ago, after the departures of Colorado, Nebraska, Missouri and Texas A&M from the Big 12.
This also means that current Houston head football coach Dana Holgorsen, who was formerly at West Virginia, will re-join the Big 12.
“Joining the Big 12 Conference is a historic step in our institutional journey and signifies the tremendous growth and success attained academically and athletically over the last decade,” UH President Renu Khator said. “Our expectations for our University remain high, our aspirations continue to be bold, and we embrace this new opportunity to compete at the highest levels in all we do.”
The BYU Cougars announced their acceptance of the invitation earlier on Friday.
The Cougars have been members of the American Athletic Conference since 2013. Per reports this week, the Cougars must give the AAC 27 month’s notice before leaving for another conference. That may make it difficult for the Cougars to join the Big 12 in the fall of 2023, as that is 24 months from now.
The Cougars have also formerly been members of the Lone Star Conference, the Gulf Coast Conference, the Missouri Valley Conference and Conference USA.
You can find Matthew Postins on Twitter @PostinsPostcard.
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