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Three Colleges Announce Withdrawal from C-USA by June 2022

Old Dominion, Marshall and Southern Miss all announced they plan on ending their alliance with Conference USA in June 2022, in anticipation of a move to the Sun Belt Conference.

Sports Illustrated's Ross Dellenger reports that this decision comes as C-USA included all three schools as part of their official 2022 football schedule that was released earlier this afternoon.

Meanwhile, Dellenger explained that the Sun Belt also created schedules including those schools, meaning each of the three football programs were set to receive two different schedules for the fall.

In a statement, Old Dominion mentioned how frustrated it was with C-USA’s scheduling process:

“The University first advised the Conference in early December 2021 of the University's plans to terminate its membership in June 2022. Since then, the University has clearly and consistently repeated its intentions to the Conference. The University offered to cooperate with the Conference to ensure that all remaining C-USA members had complete competitive schedules for those sports in which the University competes. The Conference refuses to discuss such an arrangement with the University.”

Southern Miss also released a similar statement, in which it explains that the conference is letting its members down.

“The Conference's unwillingness to discuss the concept of separation this year creates confusion and doubt for all concerned. The remaining members of Conference USA deserve certainty about their schedules as they plan for competition next year. For their sake, the University makes public its intent.”

According to Dellenger, the three schools were already in a fight with C-USA, and this withdrawal came “earlier than expected.”

C-USA released its own statement in response, per The Athletic's Chris Vannini:

“There is major realignment happening across the collegiate athletics landscape. All conferences and their members have agreed upon bylaws and contractual obligations for when transition occurs. We have chosen not to engage publicly, but have communicated with our member institutions and expect them to meet those obligations.”

Of the three football programs, Southern Miss has been a C-USA member the longest, joining the conference in 1996. Marshall then joined in 2005, followed by Old Dominion in 2014.

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