American Athletic Conference

Last updated

American Athletic Conference
The American
American Athletic Conference logo.svg
EstablishedMay 31, 1979;40 years ago (1979-05-31) [note 1]
Association NCAA
Division Division I
Subdivision FBS
Members12 (main) + 6 (associate)
Sports fielded
  • 22
    • men's: 10
    • women's: 12
Region
Former names Big East (1979–2013) [note 2]
Headquarters Providence, Rhode Island
Commissioner Michael Aresco (since 2012)
Website www.theamerican.org
Locations
American Athletic Conference map.svg

The American Athletic Conference (The American or AAC), is an American collegiate athletic conference, featuring 12 member universities and six associate member universities that compete in the National Collegiate Athletic Association's (NCAA) Division I, with its football teams competing in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS). Member universities represent a range of private and public universities of various enrollment sizes located primarily in urban metropolitan areas in the Northeastern, Midwestern, and Southern regions of the United States. [1] [2]

Contents

The American's legal predecessor, the original Big East Conference, was considered one of the six collegiate power conferences of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) era in college football, and The American inherited that status in the BCS's final season. [3] With the advent of the College Football Playoff in 2014, The American became a "Group of Five" conference, which shares one automatic spot in the New Year's Six bowl games. [note 3] [4]

The league is the product of substantial turmoil in the old Big East during the 2010–14 conference realignment period. It is one of two conferences to emerge from the all-sports Big East in 2013. While the other successor, which does not sponsor football, purchased the Big East Conference name, The American inherited the old Big East's structure and is that conference's legal successor. However, both conferences claim 1979 as their founding date, and the same history up to 2013. [5] [6] The American is headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island, and led by Commissioner Michael Aresco. [2] [7]

History

The Big East

The Big East Conference was founded in 1979 as a basketball conference and included the colleges of Providence, St. John's, Georgetown, and Syracuse, which in turn invited Connecticut (UConn), Holy Cross, Rutgers, and Boston College to be members. [8] [9] UConn and Boston College would accept the invitation, while Holy Cross soon thereafter declined the invitation, and Rutgers eventually declined and remained in the Atlantic 10 Conference (then known as the Eastern 8 Conference). Seton Hall was then invited as a replacement and the conference started play with seven members. [9]

Villanova and Pittsburgh joined shortly thereafter under the leadership of the first Big East commissioner, Dave Gavitt. [10] [11] [12]

The conference remained largely unchanged until 1991, when it began to sponsor football, adding Miami as a full member, and Rutgers, Temple, Virginia Tech, and West Virginia as football-only members. [13] Rutgers and West Virginia were offered full all-sports membership in 1995, while Virginia Tech waited until 2000 for the same offer. Temple football was kicked out after the 2004 season, but rejoined in 2012 and intended to become a full member in 2013.

The unusual structure of the Big East, with the "football" and "non-football" schools, led to instability in the conference. [14] The waves of defection and replacement brought about by the conference realignments of 2005 and the early 2010s revealed tension between the football-sponsoring and non-football schools that eventually led to the split of the conference in 2013. [15]

Realignment and reorganization

Usa edcp relief location map.png
Blue pog.svg
UCF
Blue pog.svg
SMU
Blue pog.svg – All-sports member
Purple pog.svg – Full, non-football member
Red pog.svg – Associate member (women's rowing)
Green pog.svg – Associate member (football)
Yellow pog.svg – Associate member (women's lacrosse)

The conference was reorganized following the tumultuous period of realignment that hobbled the Big East between 2010 and 2013. The Big East was one of the most severely impacted conferences during the most recent conference realignment period. In all, 14 member schools announced their departure for other conferences, and 15 other schools announced plans to join the conference (eight as all-sports members, and four for football only). Three of the latter group later backed out of their plans to join (one for all sports, and the other two for football only).

On December 15, 2012, the Big East's seven remaining non-FBS schools, all Catholic institutions consisting of DePaul, Georgetown, Marquette, Providence, St. John's, Seton Hall, and Villanova announced that they voted unanimously to leave the Big East Conference effective June 30, 2015. [16] [17] The "Catholic 7", by leaving, were looking for a more lucrative television deal than the one they would receive by remaining with the football schools. [18] In March 2013, representatives of the Catholic 7 announced they would leave the conference effective June 30, 2013, retaining the Big East name, $10 million, and the right to hold the conference's basketball tournament at Madison Square Garden. [3] [19]

Following the announcement of the departure of the Catholic 7 universities, the remaining ten football-playing members started the process of selecting a new name for the conference and choosing a new site to hold its basketball tournament. [20] [21] Various names were considered, with the "America 12" conference reportedly one of the finalists until rejected by college presidents sensitive of adding a number to the end of the conference name. [22] On April 3, 2013, the conference announced that it had chosen a new name: American Athletic Conference. [1] The conference also revealed that it prefers the nickname "The American" because it was thought "AAC" would cause too much confusion with the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC). [23]

To restate and clarify a somewhat confusing series of events: on July 1, the original Big East changed its name to the American Athletic Conference, while the "Catholic 7" split off and joined Butler, Creighton, and Xavier to form a "new" Big East. While The American is reckoned as the original conference and the "new" Big East is considered a spinoff, the "new" Big East (AAC) retained the rights to the original Big East logo, trademarks, and men's basketball tournament.

Louisville and Rutgers spent one season in the newly renamed conference. On July 1, 2014, Louisville joined the ACC [24] and Rutgers joined the Big Ten Conference. [25] On that same day, East Carolina, Tulane, and Tulsa joined The American for all sports, while Sacramento State and San Diego State joined as associate members for women's rowing. [26] [27] Navy joined as an associate member in football on July 1, 2015. [26]

For the next several years, The American did not discuss the addition of any new members. However, in March 2017, media reports indicated that the conference was seriously considering adding one or more new members specifically as basketball upgrades. Wichita State, Dayton, and VCU were reportedly considered, with Wichita State being seen as the strongest candidate. [28] By the end of that month, it was reported that talks between the American and Wichita State had advanced to the point that the two sides were discussing a timeline for membership, with the possibility of the Shockers joining as a full but non-football member as early as the 2017–18 school year. The report indicated that a final decision would be made in April. [29] [30] [31] The conference's board of directors voted unanimously on April 7 to add Wichita State effective in July 2017, making the Shockers the league's first full non-football member since the Big East split. [32]

Departure of UConn

On June 21, 2019, a Boston-area sports news website, Digital Sports Desk, revealed that UConn was expected to announce by the end of the month that it would leave the American for the Big East Conference in 2020. [33] The story was picked up by multiple national media outlets the next day. The main issue that reportedly had to be resolved prior to any official announcement was the future of UConn football, as the Big East does not sponsor that sport, and sources indicated that the American had no interest in retaining UConn as a football-only member. Reportedly, American Conference insiders were not surprised by UConn's prospective move, as that school had been vigorously opposed to that league's most recently announced television deal. [34] [35]

National media believed that should UConn leave the American, the conference's likeliest response would be to bring in two new schools—one for football only and a second in non-football sports, similar to the American's sequential additions of Navy and Wichita State. The most likely prospects for football-only membership were seen as Army (currently an FBS independent, with most of its other sports in the Patriot League), and Air Force (currently an all-sports member of the Mountain West Conference). Any of several schools could potentially fill the non-football slot, with Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports considering VCU to be "the most logical target there." Thamel dismissed the prospect of the American adding a new all-sports member, saying "there’s no obvious candidate who could add value in both basketball and football." [34] [35]

On June 24, 2019, it was reported that the Big East had formally approved an invitation for UConn to join the conference. [36] On June 26, 2019, the UConn Board of Trustees accepted the invitation and they are expected to join the league for the 2020-2021 season. [37] On July 26, media reports indicated that UConn and The American had reached a buyout agreement that confirmed UConn's Big East arrival date as July 1, 2020, paying the American a $17 million exit fee. [38]

It was widely reported that UConn was "rejoining" the Big East, given that the Huskies would be reunited with many of the schools against which it played for three decades in the original Big East. Indeed, UConn was the last charter member of the old Big East still playing in The American.

Commissioners

NameTerm
Michael Aresco 2013–present [7]

Membership timeline

Navy MidshipmenWichita State ShockersTulsa Golden HurricaneTulane Green WaveEast Carolina PiratesUCF KnightsSMU MustangsMemphis TigersHouston CougarsSouth Florida BullsCincinnati BearcatsLouisville CardinalsTemple OwlsRutgers Scarlet KnightsConnecticut HuskiesAmerican Athletic Conference

Member universities

The conference currently has 12 full member institutions – and six associate members – in 13 states, including California, Connecticut, Florida, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia. The newest full member, Wichita State, is the only one that does not sponsor football.

Current members

InstitutionLocationFoundedJoinedTypeEnrollmentNicknameColors
University of Central Florida Orlando, Florida 19632013Public68,571 [39] Knights          
University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, Ohio 18192005Public45,949 [40] Bearcats          
University of Connecticut [note 4] Storrs, Connecticut 18811979 [note 5] Public32,257 [41] Huskies          
East Carolina University Greenville, North Carolina 19072014Public28,718 [42] Pirates          
University of Houston Houston, Texas 19272013Public46,324 [43] Cougars          
University of Memphis Memphis, Tennessee 19122013Public21,458 [44] Tigers          
University of South Florida Tampa, Florida 19562005Public43,838 [45] Bulls          
Southern Methodist University Dallas, Texas 19112013Private11,649 [46] Mustangs          
Temple University Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 18842013Public39,755 [47] Owls          
Tulane University New Orleans, Louisiana 18342014Private11,722 [48] Green Wave          
University of Tulsa Tulsa, Oklahoma 18942014Private3,343 [49] Golden Hurricane               
Wichita State University [note 6] Wichita, Kansas 18952017Public15,778 [50] Shockers          

Associate members

InstitutionLocationFoundedJoinedEnrollmentNicknameColorsSportPrimary
Conference
University of Florida Gainesville, Florida 1853201851,474 Gators          Women's lacrosse SEC
Vanderbilt University Nashville, Tennessee 1873201812,686 Commodores          
United States Naval Academy Annapolis, Maryland 184520154,400 Midshipmen          Football Patriot League
Old Dominion University Norfolk, Virginia 1930201824,375 Monarchs               Rowing C-USA
California State University, Sacramento Sacramento, California 1947201428,811 Hornets           Big Sky
San Diego State University San Diego, California 1897201429,392 Aztecs           Mountain West


Former full members

Two full members have departed from the conference.

InstitutionLocationFoundedJoinedLeftNicknameColorsCurrent
conference
Rutgers University New Brunswick, New Jersey 17661991 [note 7] 2014 Scarlet Knights      Big Ten
University of Louisville Louisville, Kentucky 17982005 Cardinals           ACC

Former associate members

One associate member has left the conference.

InstitutionLocationFoundedJoinedLeftNicknameColorsSportPrimary
conference
Conference in
Former AAC Sport
Villanova University Villanova, Pennsylvania 184220132016 Wildcats          Rowing Big East CAA

Sports

The American currently sponsors championship competition in 10 men's and 12 women's NCAA sanctioned sports. Old Dominion, Sacramento State and San Diego State are associate members for women's rowing. [51] The newest conference sport of women's lacrosse, added for the 2018–19 school year, has six participating schools, with four full American members plus Florida and Vanderbilt as single-sport associates. [52]

Under NCAA rules reflecting the large number of male scholarship participants in football and attempting to address gender equity concerns (see also Title IX), each member institution is required to provide more women's varsity sports than men's. [note 8]

SportMen'sWomen's
Baseball
9
Basketball
12
12
Cross Country
10
12
Football
12
Golf
11
10
Lacrosse
6
Rowing
8
Soccer
8
10
Softball
8
Swimming & Diving
4
6
Tennis
10
12
Track and Field (Indoor)
9
12
Track and Field (Outdoor)
9
12
Volleyball
12

    Men's sponsored sports by school

    SchoolBaseballBasketballCross
    Country
    FootballGolfSoccerSwimming
    & Diving
    TennisTrack & Field
    (Indoor)
    Track & Field
    (Outdoor)
    Total
    CincinnatiGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg9
    East CarolinaGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg9
    HoustonGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg7
    MemphisGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg9
    South FloridaGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg9
    SMURed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svg6
    TempleRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svg6
    TulaneGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svg6
    TulsaRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg7
    UCFGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svg6
    UConnGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg10
    Wichita StateGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg7
    Associate Member
    Navy [note 9] Red x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svg1
    Totals91210121084109993

    Men's varsity sports not sponsored by The American which are played by conference schools:

    SchoolIce hockeyRifle [note 10] Rowing [note 11]
    MemphisRed x.svg GARC Red x.svg
    TempleRed x.svgRed x.svgIndependent
    UConn HEA Red x.svgRed x.svg

    Women's sponsored sports by school

    SchoolBasketballCross
    Country
    GolfLacrosseRowingSoccerSoftballSwimming
    & Diving
    TennisTrack & Field
    (Indoor)
    Track & Field
    (Outdoor)
    VolleyballTotal
    CincinnatiGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg10
    East CarolinaGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg11
    HoustonGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg10
    MemphisGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg9
    South FloridaGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg9
    SMUGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg10
    TempleGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg9
    TulaneGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg8
    TulsaGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg10
    UCFGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg10
    UConnGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg11
    Wichita StateGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svgGreen check.svg8
    Associate Members
    FloridaRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svg1
    Old DominionRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svg1
    Sacramento StateRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svg1
    San Diego StateRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svg1
    VanderbiltRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgGreen check.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svgRed x.svg1
    Totals12121068108612121212120

    Women's varsity sports not sponsored by The American which are played by conference schools:

    SchoolBeach
    Volleyball
    BowlingFencingField HockeyEquestrianGymnasticsIce hockeyRifle [note 10] Sailing
    Memphis GARC
    South Florida SAISA
    SMUIndependent
    Temple NIWFA Big East Independent
    TulaneIndependent Southland
    UConn Big East Hockey East

    NCAA team championships

    [54]

    Excluded from this list are all national championships earned outside the scope of NCAA competition, including Division I FBS football titles, women's AIAW championships, equestrian titles, and retroactive Helms Athletic Foundation titles.

    SchoolTotalMenWomenCo-edNicknameMost successful sport (Titles)
    University of Connecticut 22 6160 Huskies Women's basketball (11)
    University of Houston 17 1700 Cougars Men's golf (16)
    Southern Methodist University 4 400 Mustangs Men's outdoor track & field (2)
    Temple University 3 120 Owls Women's lacrosse (2)
    University of Cincinnati 2 200 Bearcats Men's basketball (2)
    Tulane University 1 100 Green Wave Men's tennis (1)
    University of Tulsa 1 010 Golden Hurricane Women's golf (1)
    Wichita State University 1 100 Shockers Baseball (1)
    University of Central Florida 0000 Knights n/a
    University of South Florida 0000 Bulls n/a
    East Carolina University 0000 Pirates n/a
    University of Memphis 0000 Tigers n/a

    See also: List of NCAA schools with the most NCAA Division I championships, List of NCAA schools with the most Division I national championships, and NCAA Division I FBS Conferences

    Football

    The conference began football during the 1991–92 season, and was a founding member of the Bowl Championship Series. [55] Previously conference opponents operated on a two-year cycle, as a home-and-home series. [56]

    West DivisionEast Division
    Houston Cincinnati
    Memphis East Carolina
    Navy South Florida
    SMU Temple
    Tulane UCF
    Tulsa UConn

    The conference previously did not have enough teams to form divisions, but now does after Navy joined the conference in 2015. [note 12] When Navy joined in 2015 and divisions were created, Navy was placed in the West division along with Houston, Memphis, SMU, Tulane, and Tulsa. Teams play eight conference games a season. Since 2015, each team has played the other five teams in its own division, as well as three teams from the other division, operating in a four-year cycle ensuring that each school will play every conference opponent at home and on the road at least once in the four-year cycle. [57] The East and West division winners, determined by final conference record, meet in the American Athletic Conference Football Championship Game, which is played at the home site of one of the division winners.

    Like the conference itself, football experienced much transition through its history – in fact it was the main force behind such departures and expansion. In 2003, the BCS announced that it would adjust the automatic bids granted to its six founding conferences based on results from 2004 to 2007. With the addition of Cincinnati, Louisville, and South Florida in 2005, the conference retained its BCS automatic-qualifying status. In 2007, South Florida rose to No. 2 in the BCS rankings, but finished No. 21 in the final poll. Cincinnati finished the 2009 regular season undefeated at 12–0, and ranked No. 3 in the final BCS standings, barely missing the opportunity to play for the BCS National Championship. The conference was 9–7 (.563) in BCS bowl games, the third highest winning percentage amongst the AQ conferences. After the 2017 Season, the University of Central Florida Knights, a member of the American, went undefeated but was not invited to the College Football Playoff. They earned the Group of Five's New Years Six bowl bid and defeated Auburn in the Peach Bowl. They would claim a national championship, which was recognized by the Colley Matrix, one of the NCAA recognized selectors of the national champion in football.

    All-time school and conference records

    As of Nov. 17, 2018. Conference wins and losses are from before and after the American Athletic Conference was formed.

    TeamOverallConferenceThe American
    Championships
    National
    Championships
    WLTWin %WLWin %
    Tulsa 62050127.5528596.47000
    Navy 71056757.5545339.57601
    South Florida 1531080.5864832.60000
    UCF 2522091.5475635.61541
    Houston 44136415.54711775.60910
    East Carolina 43641812.5108067.54400
    Cincinnati 61458750.51184106.44210
    UConn 50957038.4732262.26200
    SMU 49454554.4776183.42403
    Memphis 48851433.4879991.52110
    Tulane 52464738.44968100.40500
    Temple 46858452.4475645.55410

    Conference champions

    The American Championship Game pits the Eastern Division representative against the Western Division representative in a game held following the conclusion of the regular season. The site of the Championship Game is the home stadium of the division champion with the best overall conference record. In the event that the two division champions are tied, then the head-to-head record shall be used as the tiebreaker. Prior to the 2015 season, when the conference split into two six-team divisions and created a conference championship game, The American awarded its championship to the team(s) with the best overall conference record.

    RecordRanking
    YearChampionsConferenceOverallAPCoaches'Bowl resultHead coach
    2013 UCF 8–012–1#10#12W Fiesta Bowl 52–42 vs. Baylor George O'Leary
    2014 UCF 7–19–4N/AN/AL St. Petersburg Bowl 27–34 vs. NC State George O'Leary
    Cincinnati 7–19–4N/AN/AL Military Bowl 17–33 vs. Virginia Tech Tommy Tuberville
    Memphis 7–110–3#25#25W Miami Beach Bowl 55–48 vs. BYU Justin Fuente
    2015 Houston 7–113–1#8#8W Peach Bowl 38–24 vs. Florida State Tom Herman
    2016 Temple 7–110–3#23#24L Military Bowl 26–34 vs. Wake Forest Matt Rhule
    2017 UCF 8–013–0#6#7W Peach Bowl 34–27 vs. Auburn Scott Frost
    2018 UCF 8–012–1#11#12L Fiesta Bowl 40-32 vs. LSU Josh Heupel

    Rivalries

    The American has many rivalries among its member schools, primarily in football. Some rivalries existed before the conference was established or began play in football. Recent conference realignment in 2005 and 2013 ended – or temporarily halted – many rivalries. Before their departure to other conferences, a number of former member schools held longtime rivalries within the conference.

    TeamsRivalry NameTrophyMeetingsBeganRecordSeries leaderCurrent Streak
    East Carolina–UCF 17199110–7–0East CarolinaUCF won 3
    Navy–SMU Gansz Trophy20193012–8–0NavySMU won 1
    South Florida–UCF War on I–4War on I–4 Trophy1120056–5–0South FloridaUCF won 3
    Houston–Tulsa The RivalryThe Gazebo43195024–19–0HoustonHouston won 1

    Bowl games

    Following the 2013 season, the BCS era came to a close and was replaced by the College Football Playoff. Four teams play in two semifinal games, with the winners advancing to the College Football Playoff National Championship. [58] Six bowl games — the Rose Bowl, Sugar Bowl, Orange Bowl, Cotton Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, and Peach Bowl — will rotate as hosts for the semifinal games, and host major bowls when they do not host semifinal games (access bowls).

    With the birth of the College Football Playoff, The American lost its automatic qualifying status for one of the major bowls. Instead, one automatic qualifying spot is reserved for the highest ranked team from the "Group of Five" conferences – The American, Conference USA, the Mid-American Conference, Mountain West Conference, and Sun Belt Conference.

    Although the pick order usually corresponds to the conference standings, the bowls are not required to make their choices strictly according to the won-lost records; many factors influence bowl selections, especially the likely turnout of the team's fans. Picks are made after any applicable College Football Playoff selections. If a team is selected for the one of the access bowls or playoff, the bowl with the No. 2 pick will have the first pick of the remaining teams in the conference.

    Year [59] NameLocationOpposing Conference
    2020–25 Cotton, Peach, Fiesta, or Playoff [note 13] Dallas, Atlanta, Glendale, or Playoff Site CFP At-Large
    2020-25 Fenway Bowl Boston, Massachusetts ACC
    2020–25 Military Bowl Annapolis, Maryland ACC
    2020/22/24 Hawaiʻi Bowl Honolulu, Hawaii MWC or BYU
    2021/23/25 Armed Forces Bowl Fort Worth, Texas Big 12 or Army
    2020–25 Cure Bowl Orlando, Florida Sun Belt
    2020–25 Boca Raton Bowl Boca Raton, Florida MAC or C-USA
    2020–25 Frisco Bowl Frisco, Texas C-USA, MAC, Sun Belt or BYU
    2020–25 Birmingham Bowl Birmingham, Alabama SEC
    2020–25 Gasparilla Bowl Tampa, Florida SEC
    2020–25 First Responder Bowl Dallas, Texas TBD
    2020–25 Myrtle Beach Bowl Conway, South Carolina C-USA, MAC or Sun Belt
    2020–25 New Mexico Bowl Albuquerque, New Mexico TBD

      Head football coach compensation

      The total pay of head coaches includes university and non-university compensation. This includes base salary, income from contracts, foundation supplements, bonuses and media and radio pay. [60] [61]

      Conf.
      Rank
      UniversityHead CoachSalary [60]
      1 University of Houston Dana Holgorsen $4,000,000
      2 University of Memphis Mike Norvell $2,600,000
      3 University of South Florida Vacant$2,500,000
      4 United States Naval Academy Ken Niumatalolo $2,163,000
      5 University of Cincinnati Luke Fickell $2,000,000
      6 Temple University Rod Carey $2,000,000
      7 University of Central Florida Josh Heupel $1,700,000
      8 Tulane University Willie Fritz $1,629,000
      9 University of Tulsa Philip Montgomery $1,518,177
      10 East Carolina University Mike Houston $1,300,000
      11 University of Connecticut Randy Edsall $1,100,000
      12 Southern Methodist University Sonny Dykes TBA

      Conference individual honors

      Coaches and media of The American award individual honors at the end of each football season. [62]

      Men's basketball

      In June 2013, it was announced that the inaugural men's basketball tournament would take place at FedExForum in Memphis. [63] FedExForum had previously hosted eight Conference USA basketball tournaments.

      Even though the Big East Conference was meant to be a basketball-oriented conference, UConn, a member of The American, won the 2014 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament (the first after the conferences split).

      All-time school records by winning percentage

      This list goes through the 2018-2019 season.

      No.TeamRecordsWin Pct.The American
      Tournament
      Championships
      The American
      Regular Season
      Championships
      Final FoursNational
      Championships
      1 Temple 1,840–933.6640121
      2 UConn 1,609–903.6411054
      3 Memphis 1,459–852.6310030
      4 Cincinnati 1,669–974.6312262
      5 Houston 1,165–805.5911150
      6 Tulsa 1,362–1,092.5550000
      7 Wichita State 1,456–1,186.5510020
      8 UCF 665–549.5480000
      9 SMU 1,314–1,192.5242210
      10 Tulane 1,166–1,191.4950000
      11 East Carolina 1,018–1,055.4910000
      12 South Florida 584–664.4680000

      Conference champions

      Regular SeasonTournament
      YearChampionsRecordAPCoaches'PostseasonChampionsRecordAPCoaches'Postseason
      2013–14 [lower-alpha 1] Louisville [lower-alpha 2] 31–6 (15–3)#5#9 NCAA Sweet Sixteen Louisville31–6#5#9NCAA Sweet Sixteen
      Cincinnati 27–7 (15–3)#15#22 NCAA Second Round
      2014–15 SMU 27–7 (15–3)#18RV NCAA First Round SMU27–7#18RVNCAA First Round
      2015–16 Temple 21–12 (14–4)NRNR NCAA First Round UConn 25–10 (11–7)RVRVNCAA Second Round
      2016–17 SMU 30–4 (17–1)#12#15 NCAA First Round SMU30–4#12#15NCAA First Round
      2017–18 Cincinnati 30–4 (16–2)#6#6 NCAA Second Round Cincinnati30–4#6#8NCAA Second Round
      2018–19 Houston 33–3(16–2)#9#11NCAA Sweet Sixteen Cincinnati 28–7#22#24NCAA First Round
      1. UConn, after being eliminated from the conference tournament, went on to become the national champions after beating Kentucky 60–54 in the title game.
      2. After Louisville basketball staffer Andre McGee was found to have paid a local madam to provide strippers and prostitutes to players and recruits from 2010 through 2014, the NCAA ordered all Louisville records from the 2010–11 through 2013–14 seasons to be vacated. [64]

      Women's basketball

      In June 2013, it was announced that the inaugural women's basketball tournament would take place at the Mohegan Sun in Connecticut. [65] Women's basketball teams have played a total of 20 times in the NCAA Women's Division I Basketball Championship (since 1982), with UConn winning 11 national championships under head coach Geno Auriemma since 1995. Women's national championship tournaments prior to 1982 were run by the AIAW.

      All-time school records by winning percentage

      This list goes through the 2016–17 season. [66]

      No.TeamRecordsWin Pct.The American
      Tournament
      Championships
      The American
      Regular Season
      Championships
      Final FoursNational
      Championships
      1 UConn 1,082–297.785441811
      2 Memphis 781–590 [lower-alpha 1] .5700000
      3 Tulane 684–534.5620000
      4 Temple 806–653–3.5520000
      5 SMU 630–534.5410000
      6 East Carolina 705–600.5400000
      7 Houston 650–603.5190000
      8 Cincinnati 636–628.5030000
      9 South Florida 604–649.4820000
      10 UCF 546–611.4720000
      11 Wichita State 571–647 [lower-alpha 2] .4690000
      12 Tulsa 326–544.3750000
      1. Record since the 1972–73 season, considered by Memphis to be the start of its "modern era" of women's basketball.
      2. Record since the 1976–77 season, considered by Wichita State to be the start of its "modern era" of Division I women's basketball.

      Conference champions

      Regular SeasonTournament
      YearChampionsRecordAPCoaches'PostseasonChampionsRecordAPCoaches'Postseason
      2013–14 UConn 40–0 (18–0)#1#1 NCAA Champion UConn40–0 (18–0)#1#1NCAA Champion
      2014–15 UConn 38–1 (18–0)#1#1 NCAA Champion UConn38–1 (18–0)#1#1NCAA Champion
      2015–16 UConn 38–0 (18–0)#1#1 NCAA Champion UConn38–0 (18–0)#1#1NCAA Champion
      2016–17 UConn 36–1 (16–0)#1#1 Final Four UConn36–1 (16–0)#1#1Final Four
      2017–18 UConn 36–1 (16–0)#1#1 Final Four UConn36–1 (16–0)#1#1Final Four
      2018–19 UConn 35–3 (16–0)#2#2 Final Four UConn35–3 (16–0)#2#3Final Four

      Facilities

      InstitutionFootball stadiumCapacityBasketball arenaCapacityBaseball stadiumCapacity
      Cincinnati Nippert Stadium 40,000 Fifth Third Arena 12,012 Marge Schott Stadium 3,085
      East Carolina Dowdy–Ficklen Stadium 50,000 Williams Arena at Minges Coliseum 8,000 Clark-LeClair Stadium 5,000
      Houston TDECU Stadium 40,000 Fertitta Center 7,100 Cougar Field 5,000
      Memphis Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium 59,308 FedExForum (men)
      Elma Roane Fieldhouse (women)
      18,119
      2,565
      FedExPark 2,000
      South Florida Raymond James Stadium 65,908 Yuengling Center 10,411 USF Baseball Stadium 3,211
      SMU Gerald J. Ford Stadium 32,000 Moody Coliseum 7,000Non-baseball school
      Temple Lincoln Financial Field 68,532 Liacouras Center
      McGonigle Hall (women) [lower-alpha 1]
      10,206
      3,900
      Non-baseball school
      Tulane Yulman Stadium 30,000 Devlin Fieldhouse 4,100 Turchin Stadium 5,000
      Tulsa H. A. Chapman Stadium 30,000 Reynolds Center 8,355Non-baseball school
      UCF Spectrum Stadium 45,323 Addition Financial Arena 9,465 John Euliano Park 3,900
      UConn Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field 42,704 Harry A. Gampel Pavilion
      XL Center
      10,167
      15,564
      Elliot Ballpark 1,500
      Wichita State Non-football member [lower-alpha 2] Charles Koch Arena 10,506 Eck Stadium 7,851
      Navy Navy–Marine Corps Memorial Stadium 34,000Associate member
      1. Temple splits its women's basketball schedule between McGonigle Hall and the Liacouras Center.
      2. Wichita State discontinued its football program following the 1986 season. The Shockers' football facility, Cessna Stadium (capacity 30,000) still stands. It is the home of the Shockers' track and field program and hosts football games for Wichita's Kapaun Mt. Carmel High School.

      Academics

      One of the current full member schools, Tulane University, is a member of the Association of American Universities (AAU), an organization of 62 leading research universities in the United States and Canada. [67] Seven members are doctorate-granting universities with "very high research activity," the highest classification given by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. [68] Member schools are also highly ranked nationally and globally by various groups, including U.S. News & World Report , Washington Monthly , and Times Higher Education .

      UniversityLocationAffiliation Carnegie [68] Endowment [69] USN Nat. [70] WM Nat. [71] URAP U.S. [72]
      University of Central Florida Orlando, Florida Public (SUSF)Research (VH)$135,500,000176211114
      University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, Ohio Public (USO)Research (VH)$1,183,922,00013519157
      University of Connecticut Storrs, Connecticut PublicResearch (VH)$447,700,000608194
      East Carolina University Greenville, North Carolina Public (UNC)Doctoral$164,065,00021017169
      University of Houston Houston, Texas Public (UH System)Research (VH)$789,700,00019468104
      University of Memphis Memphis, Tennessee Public (TBR)Research (H)$200,750,000RNP37188
      University of South Florida Tampa, Florida Public (SUSF)Research (VH)$447,000,0001597872
      Southern Methodist University University Park, Texas Private (Methodist)Research (H)$1,466,258,00056260164
      Temple University Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Public (CSHE)Research (VH)$386,758,000118195108
      Tulane University New Orleans, Louisiana Private (non-sectarian)Research (VH)$1,183,924,00039100112
      University of Tulsa Tulsa, Oklahoma Private (Presbyterian)Doctoral$1,015,474,00086164297
      Wichita State University Wichita, Kansas Public (KBOR)Doctoral$235,500,000RNP (Tier 2)233258

      Media

      In March 2019, the conference announced a $1 billion, 12-year media rights deal with ESPN, under which the majority of AAC content will be aired on ESPN properties (besides selected basketball games and Navy football, which are being sub-licensed to CBS Sports). Content not aired on linear television will be exclusive to ESPN's subscription package ESPN+, but a larger number of events (including at least 40 football games and 65 men's basketball games per-season, including the conference semi-finals and championship) will air on ABC and ESPN's linear networks than under the previous contract. [73] [74] [75]

      See also

      Notes

      1. The American is the legal all-sports successor to the Big East Conference (1979–2013). The Big East was rebranded and reorganized as the American Athletic Conference on July 1, 2013.
      2. The American is the legal successor to the Big East Conference (1979–2013) and retains its charter. The current Big East Conference purchased the "Big East" name during the 2013 conference breakup.
      3. The other conferences in the "Group of Five" are Conference USA (C-USA), the Mid-American Conference (MAC), the Mountain West Conference, and the Sun Belt Conference.
      4. Departing conference after 2019-20 season.
      5. Connecticut's football program did not join the conference until 2004.
      6. Non-football member.
      7. Rutgers joined the conference in 1991 as a football-only member, and joined in all-sports in 1995.
      8. Under NCAA Bylaw 20.9.4, all Division I schools are required to sponsor a minimum of seven men's and seven women's sports, or six men's and eight women's sports. Bylaw 20.9.7.1 imposes the latter requirement on FBS schools. FCS schools, under Bylaw 20.9.8.1, may use either requirement. Note that this does not explicitly require that a school sponsor two more women's sports than men's sports. See "2012–13 NCAA Division I Manual" (PDF). NCAA . Retrieved March 7, 2013.
      9. Navy continues to field most of its other sports in the NCAA Division I Patriot League.
      10. 1 2 Rifle is technically a men's sport, but men's, women's, and coed teams all compete against each other.
      11. The only category of rowing that the NCAA governs is women's heavyweight rowing. All men's rowing is governed by the Intercollegiate Rowing Association.
      12. At the time Navy joined in football, the NCAA required 12 teams for a conference to conduct divisional play and stage a championship game that was exempt from the NCAA-imposed limit of 12 regular-season games. Starting with the 2016 season, a conference can conduct an "exempt" championship game with fewer than 12 members, as long as it either plays in two divisions or conducts a full round-robin schedule.
      13. If The American's champion is the highest ranked from among the "Group of Five" conferences, it will receive a bid to either the Cotton Bowl, the Peach Bowl, or the Fiesta Bowl. If the team is ranked in the top four at the end of the regular season, it will take part in the College Football Playoff.

      Related Research Articles

      Atlantic Coast Conference American collegiate athletics conference

      The Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) is a collegiate athletic conference located in the Southern United States. Based in Greensboro, North Carolina, the conference consists of fifteen member universities, each of whom compete in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)'s Division I, with its football teams competing in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), the highest levels for athletic competition in US-based collegiate sports. The ACC sponsors competition in twenty-five sports with many of its member institutions' athletic programs held in high regard nationally. Current members of the conference are Boston College, Clemson University, Duke University, Georgia Institute of Technology, Florida State University, North Carolina State University, Syracuse University, the University of Louisville, the University of Miami, the University of North Carolina, the University of Notre Dame, the University of Pittsburgh, the University of Virginia, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, and Wake Forest University.

      Big East Conference (1979–2013) U.S. college athletic conference, 1979–2013

      The Big East Conference was a collegiate athletics conference that consisted of as many as 16 universities in the eastern half of the United States from 1979 to 2013. The conference's members participated in 24 NCAA sports. The conference had a history of success at the national level in basketball throughout its history, while its shorter football program, created by inviting one college and four other "associate members" into the conference, resulted in two national championships.

      Mountain West Conference U.S. college athletic conference

      The Mountain West Conference (MW) is one of the collegiate athletic conferences affiliated with the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS). The MW officially began operations in July 1999. Geographically, the MW covers a broad expanse of the Western United States, with member schools located in California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming. Craig Thompson has served as Commissioner of the MW since its founding in 1999.

      Southeastern Conference Collegiate athletics conference operating primarily in the south-eastern United States

      The Southeastern Conference (SEC) is an American college athletic conference whose member institutions are located primarily in the South Central and Southeastern United States. Its fourteen members include the flagship public universities of ten states, three additional public land grant universities, and one private research university. The conference is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama. The SEC participates in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I in sports competitions; for football, it is part of the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), formerly known as Division I-A.

      NCAA Division I FBS independent schools

      National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Football Bowl Subdivision independent schools are four-year institutions whose football programs are not part of an NCAA-affiliated conference. This means that FBS independents are not required to schedule each other for competition like conference schools do.

      Atlantic 10 Conference Collegiate athletic conference

      The Atlantic 10 Conference (A-10) is a collegiate athletic conference whose schools compete in the National Collegiate Athletic Association's (NCAA) Division I. The A-10's member schools are located in states mostly on the United States Eastern Seaboard, as well as some in the Midwest – Massachusetts, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, Ohio, and Missouri as well as in the District of Columbia. Although some of its members are state-funded, half of its membership is made up of private, Catholic institutions. Despite the name, there are 14 full-time members, and two affiliate members that participate in women's field hockey only. The current commissioner is Bernadette McGlade, who began her tenure in 2008.

      Missouri Valley Conference US college athletic conference

      The Missouri Valley Conference is the third-oldest collegiate athletic conference in the United States. Currently, its members are located in the midwestern United States.

      NCAA Division I highest level of intercollegiate athletics sanctioned by the National Collegiate Athletic Association

      NCAA Division I (D-I) is the highest level of intercollegiate athletics sanctioned by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) in the United States. D-I schools include the major collegiate athletic powers, with larger budgets, more elaborate facilities and more athletic scholarships than Divisions II and III as well as many smaller schools committed to the highest level of intercollegiate competition.

      Mid-major is a term used in American NCAA Division I college sports, especially men's basketball, to refer to athletic conferences that are not among the so-called "Power Five conferences". These conferences are sometimes referred to as "high majors" by comparison. The term "mid-major" was coined in 1977 by Jack Kvancz, head coach of Catholic University's men's basketball team. Such a distinction is not officially acknowledged by the NCAA, nor does the NCAA use the terms "major" and "mid-major" to differentiate between Division I athletic conferences. It is considered offensive and derogatory by some fans and schools.

      UCF Knights football football team representing the University of Central Florida

      The UCF Knights football team represents The University of Central Florida (UCF) in the sport of American football. The Knights compete in the Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and the East Division of the American Athletic Conference. Their current head coach is Josh Heupel, formerly a player and coach at Oklahoma and offensive coordinator at Missouri. The Knights play their home games at the 44,206-seat Spectrum Stadium, which is located on UCF's main campus in Orlando, Florida, United States.

      In college football, the term Power Five conferences refers to five athletic conferences whose members are part of the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) of NCAA Division I, the highest level of collegiate football in the United States. The conferences are the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), Big Ten Conference, Big 12 Conference, Pac-12 Conference, and Southeastern Conference (SEC). The term "Power Five" is not defined by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), and the origin of the term is unknown. It has been used in its current meaning since at least 2006. The term is also occasionally used in other college sports, although in many non-football sports, most notably basketball, anywhere from six to eight conferences may be considered "high-major".

      UConn Huskies college athletic program of the University of Connecticut, US

      The UConn Huskies are the athletic teams that represent the University of Connecticut. The school is a member of the NCAA's Division I and the American Athletic Conference. The university's football team plays at Rentschler Field, and the men's and women's basketball teams play on-campus at Harry A. Gampel Pavilion and off-campus at the XL Center.

      The NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), formerly known as Division I-A, is the top level of college football in the United States. The FBS is the most competitive subdivision of NCAA Division I, which itself consists of the largest and most competitive schools in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). As of 2018, there are 10 conferences and 130 schools in FBS.

      The UConn Huskies women's basketball team is the college basketball program representing the University of Connecticut in Storrs, Connecticut, in NCAA Division I women's basketball competition. They currently play in the American Athletic Conference, though the Huskies will leave that league after the 2019–20 school year to join the Big East Conference.

      Big East Conference U.S. college athletic conference that began in 2013

      The Big East Conference is a collegiate athletic conference that competes in NCAA Division I in all sports except football, which is not sponsored. The conference has been officially recognized as a Division I multi-sport conference, effective on August 1, 2013. The conference was originally founded by Dave Gavitt on May 31, 1979.

      American Athletic Conference Mens Basketball Tournament

      The American Athletic Conference Men's Basketball Tournament is the conference tournament in basketball for the American Athletic Conference. It is a single-elimination tournament that involves all league schools. Its seeding is based on regular season records. The winner receives the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA men's basketball tournament, however the official conference championship is awarded to the team or teams with the best regular season record.

      The 2013–14 Louisville Cardinals men's basketball team represented the University of Louisville during the 2013–14 NCAA Division I men's basketball season, Louisville's 100th season of intercollegiate competition. The Cardinals competed in the American Athletic Conference and were coached by Rick Pitino in his 13th season. The team played its home games on Denny Crum Court at the KFC Yum! Center.

      2017 American Athletic Conference football season sports season

      The 2017 American Athletic Conference football season is the 26th NCAA Division I FBS Football season of the American Athletic Conference. The season is the fifth since the former Big East Conference dissolved and became the American Athletic Conference, and the fourth season with the College Football Playoff in place. The American is considered a member of the "Group of Five" (G5), meaning that the conference shares with the other G5 conferences one automatic spot in the New Year's Six bowl games. The conference game schedule for the 2017 season was released on February 9, 2017.

      2019 American Athletic Conference football season sports season

      The 2019 American Athletic Conference football season is the 28th NCAA Division I FBS Football season of the American Athletic Conference. The season is the seventh since the former Big East Conference dissolved and became the American Athletic Conference and the sixth season of the College Football Playoff in place. The American is considered a member of the Group of Five (G5) together with Conference USA (C–USA), the Mid-American Conference (MAC), the Mountain West Conference and the Sun Belt Conference. The entire schedule was released on February 7, 2019.

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