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Sun Belt-bound Southern Miss to leave the C-USA early

Photo courtesy of USM Athletics

On Friday, the University of Southern Mississippi informed the Conference USA that it will be terminating relations with the conference on June 30, 2022.

The school released a statement explaining its rationale:

“The University of Southern Mississippi will terminate its membership in Conference USA effective June 30, 2022. The University will not participate in Conference USA during the 2022-23 academic year. This decision comes after considering the best interests of the University and the entire Golden Eagle family, including nearly 350 student-athletes and thousands of fans and supporters.

The University first advised Conference USA 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 has from the outset expressed its desire to work with Conference USA to achieve an amicable separation, including offering to cooperate to ensure that all remaining conference members had complete competitive schedules for those sports in which the University competes. Conference USA has so far refused to discuss any such arrangement with the University.

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.

While the University appreciates its time and experience as a Conference USA member, that time will end on June 30, 2022. We wish Conference USA and its membership success in the future.”

Southern Miss, Marshall, and Old Dominion are all leaving the C-USA to join the Sun Belt on July 1, 2022. James Madison will also join the Sun Belt on July 1.

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