Discussion About Utah ‘Possibly’ Moving to ACC Despite Big 12 Move: Report

NCAA Football: Southern Utah at Utah

The Utah Utes haven’t even officially joined the Big 12 Conference yet, but that hasn’t stopped new speculation from surfacing in the conference realignment conversation.

According to the New York Daily News columnist and National Sportswriter Hall of Famer Dick Weiss, there is speculation circulating about Utah possibly moving to the ACC, despite its recent move to the Big 12.


The speculation centers around the ACC’s TV agreement with ESPN being a potentially better fit regarding TV value over the long-term.

Here are the revenues for the power conferences for fiscal year 2023. Combined, they raked in $3.55 billion in fiscal year 2023, according to documents obtained by USA Today. The figure represents a $227 million increase from 2022.

Here is the per-conference breakdown, with a reminder that the Big 12 has fewer teams than the Big Ten, SEC and ACC.

Big Ten: $880 million
SEC: $852.6 million
ACC: $707 million
Pac-12: $603.9 million
Big 12: $510.7 million


The ACC saw the biggest year-to-year jump due to a carriage agreement between Comcast and the ACC Network fully vesting, and the conference also made an extra $40 million due to the Orange Bowl not being a College Football Playoff semifinal, meaning it was a “host” bowl for the conference.

Per-school distributions were topped again by the Power 2, and it’s worth noting the Big 12 schools retained their third-tier rights, i.e. the Longhorn Network. Moving forward, the SEC and Big Ten will each net 29% of annual College Football Playoff distributions, while the ACC gets 17% and the Big 12 will get 15%.

That amounts to a $10 million annual difference between Oklahoma and Oklahoma State.

However, the Big 12 Conference appears to be in a much more stable place than the ACC. In the ACC, it’s been well rumored that Florida State and Clemson are looking for a way out of the conference. If their two biggest football brands leave, it would decimate the league and likely lead to an exodus. Whereas the Big 12 stability is something the conference should be very pleased with, when compared to the ACC.


However, in the Wild West that is the never-ending saga of conference realignment, conferences should always be looking for competitive edges to keep current members satisfied and future members interested.

That’s good news for the Big 12 under the leadership of commissioner Brett Yormark, who has remained on the cutting edge of college athletics and has led the Big 12 to its current place as the third-best conference of the power conferences.

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