The University of Connecticut is officially a member of the Big East Conference again. They had a welcoming ceremony at Madison Square Garden today and everything. The front page of UConn’s athletics website contains nothing but this statement and the video below.
The University of Connecticut has accepted an invitation to rejoin the BIG EAST Conference in all sports with the exception of football, men’s and women’s ice hockey and women’s rowing, following a unanimous vote by the UConn Board of Trustees on Wednesday, June 26.
With UConn officially gone, the American released this statement:
“The University of Connecticut has announced its withdrawal from the American Athletic Conference. We wish UConn well. We will next address the exit procedure mandated by our conference bylaws. Our conference will continue to move forward in pursuit of its national goals in football, men’s and women’s basketball, and Olympic sports.”
Speaking to the Associated Press, American commissioner Mike Aresco confirmed UConn is making a clean brake from the league, saying there’s “no chance” the Huskies will stick around as a football-only member, as Navy is.
None of this is surprising, of course. Randy Edsall said Wednesday the program is prepared to remain in FBS as an independent.
But, still. It’s now officially official: UConn has orphaned its football program in service of its basketball programs. That certainly appears like the right move on balance but, still, after a decade in which the college sports industry was thrown topsy-turvy in pursuit of football-generated cable television dollars, this wind-back-the-clock piece of realignment came without immediate precedent.