Utah Athletics Releases Statement Debunking Rumored ACC Courtship

May 28, 2024, 1:17 PM

SALT LAKE CITY – Memorial Day weekend got off to an interesting start as rumors began to swirl that Utah was in the middle of a courtship with the ACC before even starting their journey with the Big 12.

Those rumors were finally put to bed by Utah Athletics on Tuesday, May 28 via a statement given to Action Network college football insider Brett McMurphy:

We are proud to be entering into membership in the Big 12 Conference in the coming months & excited to join our new colleagues and member institutions. A report over the weekend that suggested otherwise is completely fabricated & irresponsible.

Where The Original Utah To ACC Rumor Began

The rumor of Utah and the ACC courting each other started on Saturday, May 25 after Dick Weiss- a prominent sports reporter put out a post on X stating the following:

Speculation is circulating about potential shifts in college sports conferences. There is discussion about Utah possibly moving to the ACC despite its recent move to the Big 12, with some suggesting the ACC might be a better fit due to its ESPN network agreement and potential for increased TV value. However, skepticism exists regarding the stability and attractiveness of the ACC compared to the Big 12.

A Reminder To Be Careful About What You Absorb Regarding Conference Realignment

Conference realignment is of course a crazy and ever-changing business where something can be true one day and not true the next.

However, despite perhaps looking feasible on the surface, this latest rumor doesn’t really add up or make a lot of sense when you consider the short and intermediate future of college athletics.

Obviously, Utah’s statement from the athletic department should be enough to dispel this rumor, but to further compound the message, after talking with three separate, well-placed sources on the matter, no one could come up with any evidence such a move was ever even on the radar let alone being seriously discussed.

Unfortunately, rumors (whether correct or false) regarding conference realignment do appear to be the continued new norm of college athletics for the foreseeable future and members of the Big 12 and ACC are going to be the likely targets of most of those rumors moving forward.

As many will recall, Utah is not the only Big 12 school to be recently dragged into the latest round of conference realignment rumors- a few weeks earlier Kansas had been rumored to be making moves toward the SEC which also is not looking terribly likely.

With all of that being said, once again it’s important to note to take everything you see and hear about conference realignment with a grain of salt. Only a small, small portion of the population are truly privy to what is happening in those negotiations, and they don’t like leaks.

Michelle Bodkin is the Utah Utes Insider for KSLsports.com and host of both the Crimson Corner Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and The Saturday Show (Saturday from 10 a.m.–12 p.m.) on The KSL Sports Zone. Follow her on XInstagram, and Threads: @BodkinKSLsports

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Utah Athletics Releases Statement Debunking Rumored ACC Courtship