UMass to join MAC conference, including previously independent football, per reports


There was some more college football realignment MACtion on Monday.

With the dismantling of the Pac-12 and the Big 10 getting … bigger, the Mid-American Conference reportedly is adding the University of Massachusetts Amherst as its 13th member.

The Athletic’s Nicole Auerbach posted on X, formerly Twitter, that the MAC board voted to welcome the Minutemen to its conference as a “full member” starting with the 2025-2026 school year. The Minutemen will play all sports that the conference has leagues for, including football, which was previously independent for UMass.

ESPN’s Pete Thamel also shared the news of the realignment on social media. The school was reportedly in talks with Conference USA as well, but the MAC aligned better geographically.

UMass’ other sports, which include baseball, basketball, track and field and women’s field hockey will leave the Atlantic 10 conference to compete in the MAC. The Minutemen men’s basketball team has competed in the same conference since 1976, and their 1996 trip to the Final Four was the only one in conference history.

UMass quarterback Taisun Phommachanh runs the ball against New Mexico State on Aug. 25, 2023, at Aggie Memorial Stadium in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

Men’s lacrosse and soccer and women’s rowing are not offered in the MAC. The Minutemen hockey team, which won the NCAA national championship in 2021, will reportedly remain in Hockey East, a hockey-only conference for Division I college programs in New England.

The Minutemen football team will return to the MAC after nine years as an independent. The program spent four seasons with the conference from 2012 to 2015. Football was the school’s only sport in the conference.

UMass will join the other MAC schools: Akron, Ball State, Bowling Green, Buffalo, Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Kent State, Miami (Ohio), Northern…

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Author : USA TODAY Sports

Publish date : 2024-02-27 02:06:28

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