Utah State University has accepted an invitation for its athletic teams to become members of the Mountain West Conference (MW) it was announced Friday by University President Stan L. Albrecht and Director of Athletics Scott Barnes. USU will officially join the MW on July 1, 2013.
The invitation was extended by the chair of the Mountain West Board of Directors and UNLV President Neal J. Smatresk and MW Commissioner CraigThompson.
Fellow Western Athletic Conference member San Jose State University was also issued an invitation to join the Mountain West and accepted. Both USU and SJSU will begin competing in the MW in the 2013-14 academic year in all sports except gymnastics, which the MW does not sponsor. USU gymnastics has several options for a future home that will be determined at a later date.
“This is an exciting moment for Utah State University as the decision renews historic rivalries and places us in a conference that is a model of athletic and academic success,” said Albrecht. “We are proud to join with this group of high-quality institutions as we continue our very positive upward trajectory. This is a great day for Utah State athletics and for the university as a whole.”
During the 2012-13 seasons, Utah State will continue to compete in the WAC in all sports along with football members Idaho, Louisiana Tech, New Mexico State, San Jose State, Texas State and UTSA, and non-football members Denver, Seattle and UT Arlington.
“This is truly a great day for Aggie nation. Membership in the Mountain West solidifies our course as an athletic program for many years into the future,” said Barnes. “Our student-athletes will soon have the opportunity to compete and grow on a much larger national stage, while enjoying the benefits of competing with institutions closer in proximity. Certainly our alumni and friends will have more opportunities to follow their Aggies on the road in league play. We are grateful for the platform the WAC provided us to grow and excel, and we look forward with anticipation to the new challenges that are just ahead of us in the Mountain West.”