University of Colorado Boulder - CU Boulder Returns to Big 12 Conference
Today, by official vote of the University of Colorado Board of Regents, the University of Colorado Boulder will join the Big 12 Conference effective for the 2024-25 academic year.
A decision like this impacts the entire campus in myriad ways and requires careful and thoughtful consideration. Ultimately, we felt the Big 12 Conference provided CU Boulder with stability that will enable us to reach new levels of long-term success both academically and athletically.
The Big 12 Conference is partners with the two largest sports media companies in the country, ESPN and FOX, which will give CU Boulder unprecedented national exposure while also bringing us into major markets like Dallas and Houston, two of the largest and fastest-growing markets in the country, as well as burgeoning markets like Orlando, Florida and Cincinnati, Ohio. Becoming members of a conference that spans three time zones, includes four Top-20 television markets, and has a linear and streaming presence with national media companies through 2030-31 will allow CU to be accessible to our alumni across the country, while simultaneously introducing the university to legions of potential new students and fans.
The Pac-12 is a strong conference with some of our country’s most outstanding institutions and it has been an honor for CU Boulder to be a member for the last 12 years. However, the conference dynamics that had been advantageous to CU in the past are no longer present, particularly with the loss of the Los Angeles market, which is where the vast majority of CU Boulder alumni and donors are located within the conference footprint. As conferences evolve, we must make sure we are continually putting CU Boulder in a position of strength rather than merely reacting to the constant shifts of the college athletics environment.
CU Boulder is an academic powerhouse. Our faculty will continue to do their collaborative research with other public and private institutions in the Association of American Universities, whether those institutions are in the Pac 12, the ACC, the Big 10 or our new conference. We are proud that our students, faculty, staff, and alumni will continue to make the significant impacts on society that have made CU Boulder a beacon of thought and knowledge throughout the world.
While many of you may remember the success CU Boulder had both on and off the field as past members of the Big 12 Conference, this is a decision made with eyes focused squarely on the future. We look forward to the incredible achievements that we’ll be making together in the years to come.
Chancellor Philip DiStefano
Athletic Director Rick George