OU Board of Regents votes to join SEC, leave Big 12

University of Oklahoma
Posted at 9:39 AM, Jul 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-31 00:05:25-04

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. — It's official. After holding a special meeting Friday, the OU Board of Regents voted for the university to join the Southeastern Conference.

On Monday, the Sooners and the Longhorns released a joint statement that they were denying to renew their media rights contract with the Big 12 Conference.

READ MORE: OU, Texas denies to renew contract with the Big 12, expected to join SEC

Since then, both universities submitted their request to join the SEC. Officials from the SEC unanimously voted to allow OU and Texas to join on Thursday. All competing sports would join the SEC effective July 1, 2025, for the 2025-26 academic year.

READ MORE: SEC votes unanimously to invite Oklahoma, Texas to join conference in 2025

This comes after the Big 12 Conference sent a cease-and-desist letter to ESPN. The conference alleging the news network conspired with other conferences to poach other Big 12 teams and convince them to leave.

Now, the OU Board of Regents has put it to the vote. They agreed for the university to join the SEC. They gave the following statement after their meeting:

It is absolutely necessary to continue our legacy. The Big 12 will always be part of our heritage and tradition. We believe now is the time to not just honor those 25 years and look forward to the next 25. We believe joining the SEC will sustain our national caliber.

OU's athletic director Joe Castiligione had this to say following the decision:

"We look forward to being a contributing member to the Big 12 through our remaining time in the conference."

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