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Texas, OU accept SEC invitation after regents approve

Texas and OU officials are expected to meet Friday morning to formally accept the SEC's invitation.

DALLAS — It's official: The University of Texas and University of Oklahoma are joining the Southeastern Conference.

Regents from both schools accepted the SEC's invitation Friday morning.

SEC officials on Thursday unanimously voted to admit Texas and OU to the conference announcing their decision in a press release.

"Today's unanimous vote is both a testament to the SEC's longstanding spirit of unity and mutual cooperation, as well as a recognition of the outstanding legacies of academic and athletic excellence established by the Universities of Oklahoma and Texas," said SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey. "I greatly appreciate the collective efforts of our Presidents and Chancellors in considering and acting upon each school's membership interest."

Presidents from all 14 SEC schools, including Texas A&M, voted in favor of the move. Texas A&M had initially expressed opposition to their rival Longhorns joining the SEC, but A&M's regents later came around to the idea, deciding this week to support conference expansion.

In the announcement Thursday, the SEC said Texas and OU will join the conference July 1, 2025 for the 2025-26 season, after the schools' current media rights deal with the Big 12 expires.

Regardless of when Texas and OU join the SEC, the move marks a seismic shift in the college sports landscape.

Not only will Texas and OU bolster the already-powerful SEC, but their planned departure from the Big 12 also puts that conference in limbo.

The Big 12, now down to eight universities, was anchored by Texas and Oklahoma, two historic programs with large fanbases that drive revenue and interest.

On the field, Oklahoma has won the last six Big 12 football championships and has been the conference's lone representative in the College Football Playoff.

Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby on Wednesday sent a cease-and-desist letter to ESPN, accusing the network of working behind the scenes to disrupt the Big 12.

Bowlsby earlier this week said the Big 12 will "face the challenges head-on" and that he was confident the Big 12 will remain "vibrant and successful" moving forward.