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ACC, Big Ten, Pac-12 announce conference alliance

Nina King will be taking over as Duke's athletic director during a rapidly changing NCAA landscape.
Nina King will be taking over as Duke's athletic director during a rapidly changing NCAA landscape.

The latest change to the landscape of the NCAA went into effect Tuesday. 

The ACC, Big Ten and Pac-12 officially announced a conference alliance on a video call with the media Tuesday. The move comes after weeks of conversations between the three conferences in the wake of Texas and Oklahoma getting set to join the SEC in 2025. ACC Commissioner Jim Phillips, Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren and Pac-12 Commissioner George Kliavkoff issued opening statements and fielded questions from the media on the details of the process. The three commissioners spoke on scheduling, the college football playoff and more, as well as announced that there is no form of contract or written agreement between the three conferences binding them to the alliance. Each stressed that the athletes were put first in making the alliance. 

The Athletic's Nicole Auerbach was the first to report the news of the alliance being made official late Monday night.

Further details on what this looks like on a season-by-season basis are still unclear. Scheduling is up in the air with many of the teams in these three conferences already having long-term deals in effect. No preexisting contracts that schools in the alliance have will be altered to accommodate with any new scheduling opportunities, Warren said. The Pac-12 and Big Ten have nine conference games every year, and Kliavkoff said there is no intention to increase the number of games per season. 

The College Football Playoff was a popular topic Tuesday as well, and Phillips said that the ACC has not yet made a decision on if the conference supports the proposed 12-team college playoff that could go into effect after the 2025-26 season. 

Phillips said financial reasons are often a driver of a lot of decisions, but that now was a time to think about the future of college athletics for the athletes. He said "this is too important to too many student-athletes" and with the rapidly changing NCAA with recent events like the one-time free transfer rule and the Supreme Court decision in NCAA vs. Alston, it was a time to act to establish structure. 

Institutions across all three conferences made clear that they prioritize academics and having a wide variety of collegiate sports, and that was why they felt the merger was in the best interest of the Universities.

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available. This article was last updated at 3:12 p.m.

Jake C. Piazza

Jake Piazza is a Trinity junior and sports editor of The Chronicle's 117th volume.


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