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American Athletic Conference to rebuild with 6 schools from Conference USA

ODU is still in C-USA as their conference takes a look at other regional schools like JMU and Liberty
Credit: AP
FILE - In this Dec. 5, 2015, file photo, the American Athletic Conference logo is displayed before during the championship NCAA college football game between Houston and Temple in Houston. Six schools from Conference USA — UAB, UTSA, Rice, North Texas, Charlotte and Florida Atlantic — have applied for membership with the AAC and are expected to be accepted by the end of the week, according to two people with knowledge of the process who spoke with The Associated Press, Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File)

The American Athletic Conference will add UAB, Texas-San Antonio, Rice, North Texas, Charlotte and Florida Atlantic to the league. The AAC is replacing three schools that are scheduled to depart for the Big 12 Conference and is growing to 14 teams. 

The conference hopes the move will stabilize the league in the short term and prepare it to withstand future poaching of its members. The additions all come from Conference USA, leaving that league both searching for new members and trying to fend off other poachers. 

The Sun Belt has said it is interested in expanding beyond its current 10 football members and some of C-USA’s remaining eight schools would be geographic fits. ODU, James Madison and Liberty are reportedly on the list of possibilities for the Sun Belt.