Aggie SEC-ession: A&M Accepted to the Southeastern Conference

Press Releases

SEC: Here  |  A&M: Here


Major A&M/SEC Football Games

1957 Gator Bowl
Tennessee 3, A&M 0

1968 Cotton Bowl
A&M 20, Alabama 16

1986 Cotton Bowl
A&M 36, Auburn 16

2000 Independence Bowl
Mississippi State 43, A&M 41 (OT)

2005 Cotton Bowl
Tennessee 38, A&M 7

2011 Cotton Bowl
LSU 41, A&M 24


SEC Divisions

Eastern Division

  • Florida Gators (Gainesville)
  • Georgia Bulldogs (Athens)
  • Kentucky Wildcats (Lexington)
  • South Carolina Gamecocks (Columbia)
  • Tennessee Volunteers (Knoxville)
  • Vanderbilt Commodores (Nashville, TN)

Western Division

  • Alabama Crimson Tide (Tuscaloosa)
  • Arkansas Razorbacks (Fayetteville)
  • Auburn Tigers (Auburn, AL)
  • Louisiana State Tigers (Baton Rogue)
  • Mississippi State Bulldogs (Starkville)
  • Mississippi Rebels (Oxford)

Twitter Reaction

Billy Liucci, TexAgs.com: "A&M is now a member of THE nation's most prestigious and dominant league: The Southeastern Conference. A defining moment in Aggie history"

Kirk Bohls, Austin American-Statesman: "To me, it's just tragic that A&M is going to the SEC. Wipes out a century of tradition and rivalries."

Andy Katz, ESPN: "Forget about 13 vs. 14 right now. Aggies can fit well in the SEC. FB passion is there; good move for BKennedy in hoops. SEC gets into Houston"

John Calipari, UK Men's Basketball Coach: "I'd like to welcome Billy Kennedy and Texas A&M to the SEC. Congrats to Commissioner Mike Slive & our presidents on a great addition to our league."

Rep. Bill Flores, (R) District 17: "I would have preferred to stay in the Big 12, but I respect A&M's decision. #GigEmAgs"

@kbtxnews  |  @kbtxsports

After months of speculation, rumors, jockeying, threats and drama, Texas A&M has officially been accepted to the Southeastern Conference.

Effective July 1, 2012, the university will depart its athletics home of the past 15 years, the Big 12, to join the top college football conference in the nation, potentially leaving behind long-standing rivalries in a move done to enhance its nationwide reach, according to A&M's president.

“The Southeastern Conference provides Texas A&M the national visibility that our great university and our student-athletes deserve,” said R. Bowen Loftin in a statement. “We are excited to begin competition in the nation’s premier athletic conference. This is a 100-year decision that we have addressed carefully and methodically, and I believe the Southeastern Conference gives the Aggies the best situation of any conference in the country.”

A celebration and press conference is scheduled to get underway Monday at 6 p.m. at the Zone Club at Kyle Field.

“The Southeastern Conference Presidents and Chancellors are pleased to welcome Texas A&M University to the SEC family,” said Dr. Bernie Machen, chair of the SEC Presidents and Chancellors and president of the University of Florida in the same statement. “The addition of Texas A&M University as the SEC’s 13th member gives our league a prestigious academic institution with a strong athletic tradition and a culture similar to our current institutions.”

The SEC members' presidents and chancellors voted unanimously Sunday to bring the Aggies into the fold, just weeks after it accepted the school under the condition that Big 12 members wouldn't take legal action with the A&M departure.

Some Big 12 schools, including a very vocal Baylor, did not waive their respective rights to take action, but legal experts have told News 3 the only grounds Baylor would have for a suit would be if the Big 12 collapsed, forcing Baylor to find a new home and causing potential economic damages.

Last week, the Pac 12 Conference's leadership voted against expanding further, a move that left four Big 12 schools without a transfer acceptable to them. Texas, Texas Tech, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State had been exploring changing athletic conferences.

Big 12 Commissioner Dan Beebe resigned late last week, a "mutual" agreement likely caused, in part, by the departure of three teams in two years. Nebraska bolted for the Big Ten, while Colorado moved to the Pac 12. It has been rumored that the four schools looking to leave the Big 12 together had made Beebe's ouster a condition of their staying.

The A&M addition to the SEC marks that conference's first membership change since the 1991 additions of Aggie-rival Arkansas and South Carolina. The Razorbacks and Aggies, old Southwest Conference foes, meet this Saturday in Arlington in a game to be televised by ESPN.

CBS, of which KBTX is an affiliate, holds the primary television deal with the SEC, having signed a 15-year, $825 million deal in 2008. CBS has the rights to broadcast whichever home SEC game it wants on Saturdays, with some doubleheader weekends. ESPN holds a second deal, a 15-year, $2.25 billion contract that began in 2009. Fox also has a deal with the SEC.

"On behalf of our presidents, chancellors, athletics directors, students and fans, I welcome Texas A&M University to the SEC family," said SEC Commissioner Mike Slive. "Texas A&M is a nationally-prominent institution on and off the field and a great fit for the SEC tradition of excellence—athletically, academically and culturally."

In addition to the major money maker of football, A&M takes another 19 varsity sports to the SEC, including national champion women's basketball and men's and women's outdoor track and field squads. Equestrian is the only sport the Aggies compete in that the SEC does not sponsor. A&M does not have a gymnastics team, which the SEC does sponsor.

A&M is the first Texas school to join the SEC. It also now becomes the third SEC institution that is a member of the American Association of Universities, a group of nearly 60 leading research schools across the nation.

Since play in the now-defunct Southwest Conference began in 1915, the Aggies have always been in the same league as Texas and Baylor. In the case of the former, indications are despite A&M's desire to continue an annual football game, UT leadership does not want it.

While A&M had explored leaving the Big 12 last summer, UT's partnership with ESPN in creating the Longhorn Network has been described by A&M officials as one of the sparks that started moving the Aggies towards a departure. Critics have called LHN an unfair advantage for UT in recruiting, and the network had made moves to televise high school games live, something later shot down by the conference and the NCAA.

The Aggies now renew a bitter rivalry with Louisiana State University, the closest SEC school to College Station. Other members of the SEC Western Division include Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Mississippi and Mississippi State.

In the SEC Eastern Division are Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, South Carolina, Tennessee and Vanderbilt.

SEC football teams have won the last five national championships. LSU is currently the top-ranked team in the nation in the AP Top 25. They are second to Oklahoma in the USA Today Coaches Poll. SEC members (some not current) have won 35 national football titles.

In men's basketball, Kentucky is one of the most storied teams in history. It is the winningest school in college basketball and has the second-most national titles. Florida also claimed back-to-back national championships last decade.

Women's basketball in the SEC is home to Tennessee. The Volunteers have eight national titles, the only ones claimed by the conference. Texas A&M won its first national championship this past season, led by Head Coach Gary Blair, who used to coach Arkansas.

LSU has proven to be a power in both baseball and track and field in the SEC. Former Tiger head track coach Pat Henry is now at A&M, the back-to-back-to-back defending national champs in men's and women's outdoor track.


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