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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]

American Athletic Conference
The American
American Athletic Conference logo
EstablishedMay 31, 1979; 40 years ago (1979-05-31)[note 1]
DivisionDivision I
Members12 (main) + 6 (associate)
Sports fielded
  • 22
    • men's: 10
    • women's: 12
Former namesBig East (1979–2013)[note 2]
HeadquartersProvidence, Rhode Island
CommissionerMichael Aresco (since 2012)
American Athletic Conference locations

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]


The Big EastEdit

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 Big East's first 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 Big East 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 Big East 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 reorganizationEdit

  – All-sports member
  – Full, non-football member
  – Associate member (women's rowing)
  – Associate member (football)
  – 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 the spinoff, the "new" Big East retained the rights to the original Big East's logo, wordmarks and the men's basketball conference tournament.

Louisville and Rutgers spent one season in the 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 UConnEdit

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 FCS-level 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 old Big East. However, as mentioned above The American is the legal successor to the old Big East; indeed, UConn was the last charter member of the old Big East still playing in The American.


Name Term
Michael Aresco 2013–present[7]

Membership timelineEdit

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

Member universitiesEdit

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 membersEdit

Institution Location Founded Joined Type Enrollment Nickname Colors
University of Central Florida Orlando, Florida 1963 2013 Public 68,571[39] Knights          
University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, Ohio 1819 2005 Public 38,062[40] Bearcats          
University of Connecticut[note 4] Storrs, Connecticut 1881 1979[note 5] Public 32,257[41] Huskies          
East Carolina University Greenville, North Carolina 1907 2014 Public 28,718[42] Pirates          
University of Houston Houston, Texas 1927 2013 Public 46,324[43] Cougars          
University of Memphis Memphis, Tennessee 1912 2013 Public 21,458[44] Tigers          
University of South Florida Tampa, Florida 1956 2005 Public 43,838[45] Bulls          
Southern Methodist University Dallas, Texas 1911 2013 Private 11,649[46] Mustangs          
Temple University Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 1884 1991, 2012[note 6] Public 39,755[47] Owls          
Tulane University New Orleans, Louisiana 1834 2014 Private 11,722[48] Green Wave          
University of Tulsa Tulsa, Oklahoma 1894 2014 Private 3,343[49] Golden Hurricane               
Wichita State University[note 7] Wichita, Kansas 1895 2017 Public 15,778[50] Shockers          

Associate membersEdit

Institution Location Founded Joined Enrollment Nickname Colors Sport Primary
University of Florida Gainesville, Florida 1853 2018 51,474 Gators           Women's lacrosse SEC
Vanderbilt University Nashville, Tennessee 1873 2018 12,686 Commodores          
United States Naval Academy Annapolis, Maryland 1845 2015 4,400 Midshipmen           Football Patriot League
Old Dominion University Norfolk, Virginia 1930 2018 24,375 Monarchs                Rowing C-USA
California State University, Sacramento Sacramento, California 1947 2014 28,811 Hornets           Big Sky
San Diego State University San Diego, California 1897 2014 29,392 Aztecs           Mountain West

Former full membersEdit

Two full members have departed from the conference.

Institution Location Founded Joined Left Nickname Colors Current
Rutgers University New Brunswick, New Jersey 1766 1991[note 8] 2014 Scarlet Knights      Big Ten
University of Louisville Louisville, Kentucky 1798 2005 Cardinals           ACC

Former associate membersEdit

One associate member has left the conference.

Institution Location Founded Joined Left Nickname Colors Sport Primary
Conference in
Former AAC Sport
Villanova University Villanova, Pennsylvania 1842 2013 2016 Wildcats           Rowing Big East CAA


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 9]

Sport Men's Women's
Cross Country
Swimming & Diving
Track and Field (Indoor)
Track and Field (Outdoor)

Men's sponsored sports by schoolEdit

School Baseball Basketball Cross
Football Golf Soccer Swimming
& Diving
Tennis Track & Field
Track & Field
Cincinnati  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  Y 9
East Carolina  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  Y 9
Houston  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  N  N  Y  Y 7
Memphis  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y 9
South Florida  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y 9
SMU  N  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  N 6
Temple  N  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  N  N 6
Tulane  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  N  N  Y  N  Y 6
Tulsa  N  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  N  Y  Y  Y 7
UCF  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  N  N 6
UConn  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y 10
Wichita State  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  N  N  Y  Y  Y 7
Associate Member
Navy[note 10]  N  N  N  Y  N  N  N  N  N  N 1
Totals 9 12 10 12 10 8 4 10 9 9 93

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

School Ice hockey Rifle[note 11] Rowing[note 12]
Memphis  N GARC  N
Temple  N  N Independent
UConn HEA  N  N

Women's sponsored sports by schoolEdit

School Basketball Cross
Golf Lacrosse Rowing Soccer Softball Swimming
& Diving
Tennis Track & Field
Track & Field
Volleyball Total
Cincinnati  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y 10
East Carolina  Y  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y 11
Houston  Y  Y  Y  N  N  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y 10
Memphis  Y  Y  Y  N  N  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  Y 9
South Florida  Y  Y  Y  N  N  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  Y 9
SMU  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y 10
Temple  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  N  N  Y  Y  Y  Y 9
Tulane  Y  Y  Y  N  N  N  N  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y 8
Tulsa  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  Y 10
UCF  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  Y 10
UConn  Y  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y  Y 11
Wichita State  Y  Y  Y  N  N  N  Y  N  Y  Y  Y  Y 8
Associate Members
Florida  N  N  N  Y  N  N  N  N  N  N  N  N 1
Old Dominion  N  N  N  N  Y  N  N  N  N  N  N  N 1
Sacramento State  N  N  N  N  Y  N  N  N  N  N  N  N 1
San Diego State  N  N  N  N  Y  N  N  N  N  N  N  N 1
Vanderbilt  N  N  N  Y  N  N  N  N  N  N  N  N 1
Totals 12 12 10 6 8 10 8 6 12 12 12 12 120

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

School Beach
Bowling Fencing Field Hockey Equestrian Gymnastics Ice hockey Rifle[note 11] Sailing
Memphis GARC
South Florida SAISA
SMU Independent
Temple NIWFA Big East Independent
Tulane Independent Southland
UConn Big East Hockey East

NCAA team championshipsEdit


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 Division East 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 13] 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 recordsEdit

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

Team Overall Conference The American
W L T Win % W L Win %
Tulsa 620 501 27 .552 85 96 .470 0 0
Navy 710 567 57 .554 53 39 .576 0 1
South Florida 153 108 0 .586 48 32 .600 0 0
UCF 252 209 1 .547 56 35 .615 4 1
Houston 441 364 15 .547 117 75 .609 1 0
East Carolina 436 418 12 .510 80 67 .544 0 0
Cincinnati 614 587 50 .511 84 106 .442 1 0
UConn 509 570 38 .473 22 62 .262 0 0
SMU 494 545 54 .477 61 83 .424 0 3
Memphis 488 514 33 .487 99 91 .521 1 0
Tulane 524 647 38 .449 68 100 .405 0 0
Temple 468 584 52 .447 56 45 .554 1 0

Conference championsEdit

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.

Record Ranking
Year Champions Conference Overall AP Coaches' Bowl result Head coach
2013 UCF 8–0 12–1 #10 #12 W Fiesta Bowl 52–42 vs. Baylor George O'Leary
2014 UCF 7–1 9–4 N/A N/A L St. Petersburg Bowl 27–34 vs. NC State George O'Leary
Cincinnati 7–1 9–4 N/A N/A L Military Bowl 17–33 vs. Virginia Tech Tommy Tuberville
Memphis 7–1 10–3 #25 #25 W Miami Beach Bowl 55–48 vs. BYU Justin Fuente
2015 Houston 7–1 13–1 #8 #8 W Peach Bowl 38–24 vs. Florida State Tom Herman
2016 Temple 7–1 10–3 #23 #24 L Military Bowl 26–34 vs. Wake Forest Matt Rhule
2017 UCF 8–0 13–0 #6 #7 W Peach Bowl 34–27 vs. Auburn Scott Frost
2018 UCF 8–0 12–1 #11 #12 L Fiesta Bowl 40-32 vs. LSU Josh Heupel


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.

Teams Rivalry Name Trophy Meetings Began Record Series leader Current Streak
East Carolina–UCF 17 1991 10–7–0 East Carolina UCF won 3
Navy–SMU Gansz Trophy 20 1930 12–8–0 Navy SMU won 1
Houston–SMU The Burrito Bowl Burrito Bowl 34 1975 21–12–1 Houston SMU won 1
South Florida–UCF War on I–4 War on I–4 Trophy 9 2005 6–4–0 South Florida UCF won 2
Houston–Tulsa The Rivalry The Gazebo 43 1950 24–19–0 Houston Houston won 1
UConn - UCF Civil ConFLiCT 6 2013 4-2-0 UCF UCF won 3

Bowl gamesEdit

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] Name Location Opposing Conference
2020–25 Cotton, Peach, Fiesta, or Playoff[note 14] Dallas, Atlanta, Glendale, or Playoff Site CFP At-Large
2020-25 Boston 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 compensationEdit

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]

University Head Coach Salary[60]
1 University of Houston Dana Holgorsen $4,000,000
2 University of Memphis Mike Norvell $2,600,000
3 University of South Florida Charlie Strong $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
  • New hire

Conference individual honorsEdit

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

Men's basketballEdit

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 percentageEdit

This list goes through the 2018-2019 season.

No. Team Records Win Pct. The American
The American
Regular Season
Final Fours National
1 Temple 1,840–933 .664 0 1 2 1
2 UConn 1,609–903 .641 1 0 5 4
3 Memphis 1,459–852 .631 0 0 3 0
4 Cincinnati 1,669–974 .631 2 2 6 2
5 Houston 1,165–805 .591 1 1 5 0
6 Tulsa 1,362–1,092 .555 0 0 0 0
7 Wichita State 1,456–1,186 .551 0 0 2 0
8 UCF 665–549 .548 0 0 0 0
9 SMU 1,314–1,192 .524 2 2 1 0
10 Tulane 1,166–1,191 .495 0 0 0 0
11 East Carolina 1,018–1,055 .491 0 0 0 0
12 South Florida 584–664 .468 0 0 0 0

Conference championsEdit

Regular Season Tournament
Year Champions Record AP Coaches' Postseason Champions Record AP Coaches' Postseason
2013–14[a] Louisville[b] 31–6 (15–3) #5 #9 NCAA Sweet Sixteen Louisville 31–6 #5 #9 NCAA Sweet Sixteen
Cincinnati 27–7 (15–3) #15 #22 NCAA Second Round
2014–15 SMU 27–7 (15–3) #18 RV NCAA First Round SMU 27–7 #18 RV NCAA First Round
2015–16 Temple 21–12 (14–4) NR NR NCAA First Round UConn 25–10 (11–7) RV RV NCAA Second Round
2016–17 SMU 30–4 (17–1) #12 #15 NCAA First Round SMU 30–4 #12 #15 NCAA First Round
2017–18 Cincinnati 30–4 (16–2) #6 #6 NCAA Second Round Cincinnati 30–4 #6 #8 NCAA Second Round
2018–19 Houston 33–3(16–2) #9 #11 NCAA Sweet Sixteen Cincinnati 28–7 #22 #24 NCAA 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 basketballEdit

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 percentageEdit

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

No. Team Records Win Pct. The American
The American
Regular Season
Final Fours National
1 UConn 1,082–297 .785 4 4 18 11
2 Memphis 781–590[a] .570 0 0 0 0
3 Tulane 684–534 .562 0 0 0 0
4 Temple 806–653–3 .552 0 0 0 0
5 SMU 630–534 .541 0 0 0 0
6 East Carolina 705–600 .540 0 0 0 0
7 Houston 650–603 .519 0 0 0 0
8 Cincinnati 636–628 .503 0 0 0 0
9 South Florida 604–649 .482 0 0 0 0
10 UCF 546–611 .472 0 0 0 0
11 Wichita State 571–647[b] .469 0 0 0 0
12 Tulsa 326–544 .375 0 0 0 0
  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 championsEdit

Regular Season Tournament
Year Champions Record AP Coaches' Postseason Champions Record AP Coaches' Postseason
2013–14 UConn 40–0 (18–0) #1 #1 NCAA Champion UConn 40–0 (18–0) #1 #1 NCAA Champion
2014–15 UConn 38–1 (18–0) #1 #1 NCAA Champion UConn 38–1 (18–0) #1 #1 NCAA Champion
2015–16 UConn 38–0 (18–0) #1 #1 NCAA Champion UConn 38–0 (18–0) #1 #1 NCAA Champion
2016–17 UConn 36–1 (16–0) #1 #1 Final Four UConn 36–1 (16–0) #1 #1 Final Four
2017–18 UConn 36–1 (16–0) #1 #1 Final Four UConn 36–1 (16–0) #1 #1 Final Four
2018–19 UConn 35–3 (16–0) #2 #2 Final Four UConn 35–3 (16–0) #2 #3 Final Four


Institution Football stadium Capacity Basketball arena Capacity Baseball stadium Capacity
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)
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 7,000 Non-baseball school
Temple Lincoln Financial Field 68,532 Liacouras Center
McGonigle Hall (women)[a]
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 8,355 Non-baseball school
UCF Spectrum Stadium 45,323 CFE Arena 9,465 John Euliano Park 3,900
UConn Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field 42,704 Harry A. Gampel Pavilion
XL Center
Elliot Ballpark 1,500
Wichita State Non-football member[b] Charles Koch Arena 10,506 Eck Stadium 7,851
Navy Navy–Marine Corps Memorial Stadium 34,000 Associate 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.


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.

University Location Affiliation Carnegie[68] Endowment[69] USN Nat.[70] WM Nat.[71] URAP U.S.[72]
University of Central Florida Orlando, Florida Public (SUSF) Research (VH) $135,500,000 176 211 114
University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, Ohio Public (USO) Research (VH) $1,183,922,000 135 191 57
University of Connecticut Storrs, Connecticut Public Research (VH) $447,700,000 60 81 94
East Carolina University Greenville, North Carolina Public (UNC) Doctoral $164,065,000 210 171 69
University of Houston Houston, Texas Public (UH System) Research (VH) $789,700,000 194 68 104
University of Memphis Memphis, Tennessee Public (TBR) Research (H) $200,750,000 RNP 37 188
University of South Florida Tampa, Florida Public (SUSF) Research (VH) $447,000,000 159 78 72
Southern Methodist University University Park, Texas Private (Methodist) Research (H) $1,466,258,000 56 260 164
Temple University Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Public (CSHE) Research (VH) $386,758,000 118 195 108
Tulane University New Orleans, Louisiana Private (non-sectarian) Research (VH) $1,183,924,000 39 100 112
University of Tulsa Tulsa, Oklahoma Private (Presbyterian) Doctoral $1,015,474,000 86 164 297
Wichita State University Wichita, Kansas Public (KBOR) Doctoral $235,500,000 RNP (Tier 2) 233 258


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 alsoEdit


  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. ^ Temple was not a Big East football member between the 2005 and 2011 seasons, most of this time being spent in the Mid-American Conference. Temple joined as a football only member in 2012, and as an all-sports member in 2013.
  7. ^ Non-football member.
  8. ^ Rutgers joined the conference in 1991 as a football-only member, and joined in all-sports in 1995.
  9. ^ 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 imposes the latter requirement on FBS schools. FCS schools, under Bylaw, 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.
  10. ^ Navy continues to field most of its other sports in the NCAA Division I Patriot League.
  11. ^ a b Rifle is technically a men's sport, but men's, women's, and coed teams all compete against each other.
  12. ^ 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.
  13. ^ 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.
  14. ^ 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.


  1. ^ a b "New Name in College Sports – Current BIG EAST Enters New Era as 'American Athletic Conference'". April 3, 2013. Archived from the original on April 21, 2013. Retrieved April 3, 2013.
  2. ^ a b Katz, Andy (March 15, 2013). "What's next for the 'old Big East'". ESPN. Retrieved March 17, 2013.
  3. ^ a b McMurphy, Brett (March 1, 2013). "Catholic 7 to keep 'Big East' name for new league next season, according to sources". ESPN. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  4. ^ Mandel, Stewart (November 12, 2012). "Big East, rest of 'Group of Five' score win with six-bowl decision". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved March 8, 2013.
  5. ^ "The American Athletic Conference - About the American Athletic Conference". February 9, 2014. Archived from the original on February 9, 2014. Retrieved July 15, 2018.
  6. ^ "Big East Conference - BIG EAST Conference History". Retrieved July 15, 2018.
  7. ^ a b Russo, Ralph (March 8, 2013). "Big East completes official split of football, basketball". Associated Press. Archived from the original on April 10, 2013. Retrieved March 17, 2013.
  8. ^ Blaudschun, Mark (March 8, 2013). "Naming original Big East was simple". Archived from the original on April 8, 2014. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
  9. ^ a b Crouthamel, Jake (December 8, 2000). "A Big East History and Retrospective, Part 1". Retrieved March 9, 2013.
  10. ^ Sarah Maslin Nir (September 17, 2011). "Dave Gavitt, the Big East's Founder, Dies at 73". The New York Times. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
  11. ^ "Big East, Villanova Make It Official". The Pittsburgh Press. United Press International. March 13, 1980. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
  12. ^ Hanley, Richard F (November 19, 1981). "Pittsburgh To Join Big East". Record-Journal. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
  13. ^ "Big East Football Timeline". Philadelphia Inquirer. March 8, 2008. Archived from the original on August 27, 2012. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
  14. ^ Thamel, Pete (May 7, 2012). "Commissioner John Marinatto Steps Down Amid Big East's Instability". The New York Times. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
  15. ^ "Big East 'unwilling' to meet terms". ESPN. January 3, 2013. Retrieved March 9, 2013.
  16. ^ Katz, Andy; McMurphy, Brett (December 11, 2012). "Big East fate vexes Catholic schools". ESPN. Retrieved December 11, 2012.
  17. ^ "Seven schools leaving Big East". ESPN. December 15, 2012. Retrieved December 15, 2012.
  18. ^ Rovell, Darren (January 6, 2013). "Sources: 'Catholic 7' eyes big TV deal". ESPN. Retrieved March 6, 2013.
  19. ^ Harten, David (March 5, 2013). "Catholic 7 has framework to keep Big East name, MSG as tourney site". NBC Sports. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  20. ^ Blaudschun, Mark (March 6, 2013). "Big East, Catholic 7 ready to make split official". Archived from the original on December 3, 2013. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  21. ^ "Report: $100M for football schools". ESPN. March 5, 2013. Retrieved March 7, 2013.
  22. ^ Former Big East to be named American Athletic Conference. ESPN (April 4, 2013). Retrieved on 2013-07-15.
  23. ^ Wolken, Dan (May 29, 2013). "American Athletic Conference unveils its primary logos". USA Today. Beyond the challenge of avoiding something that looked corporate, the league also couldn't build the logo around an acronym. From the very beginning, the conference office has been adamant that it wants to be known as The American instead of the AAC to avoid confusion with the Atlantic Coast Conference.
  24. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on December 12, 2012. Retrieved November 28, 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  25. ^ Rutgers Scarlet Knights accept invitation to join Big Ten as Board of Governors gives go-ahead to athletic director Tim Pernetti. NY Daily News (November 19, 2012). Retrieved on 2013-07-15.
  26. ^ a b "At a glance: Latest wave of conference realignment". USA Today. June 29, 2014. Retrieved June 30, 2014.
  27. ^ "The American adds Associate Members for Women's Rowing" (Press release). American Athletic Conference. March 25, 2014. Retrieved May 17, 2014.
  28. ^ Dodd, Dennis (March 3, 2017). "Wichita State getting 'serious evaluation' to join American Athletic Conference". Retrieved March 6, 2017.
  29. ^ Thamel, Pete (March 31, 2017). "Sources: Wichita State in talks to join AAC as soon as 2017–18". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved March 31, 2017.
  30. ^ "Source: Wichita St. eyes 2017 move to AAC". Retrieved April 4, 2017.
  31. ^ "AAC Is Preparing For Wichita State To Join League In 2017–18". Archived from the original on April 5, 2017. Retrieved April 4, 2017.
  32. ^ "Wichita State to Become Member of American Athletic Conference" (Press release). American Athletic Conference. April 7, 2017. Retrieved April 7, 2017.
  33. ^ "UConn to Return to Big East". Digital Sports Desk. June 21, 2019. Retrieved June 22, 2019.
  34. ^ a b Borzello, Jeff; Schlabach, Mark (June 22, 2019). "Sources: UConn expected to rejoin Big East". Retrieved June 22, 2019.
  35. ^ a b Thamel, Pete (June 22, 2019). "Sources: UConn move to the Big East inevitable". Yahoo Sports. Retrieved June 22, 2019.
  36. ^ "Big East presidents approve UConn's invitation to join conference; football program's future remains uncertain". Retrieved June 25, 2019.
  37. ^ Dauster, Rob (June 26, 2019). "It's official: UConn is back in the Big East". CollegeBasketballTalk. Retrieved June 26, 2019.
  38. ^ Borzello, Jeff (July 26, 2019). "UConn leaving AAC in '20, will owe $17M exit fee". Retrieved July 26, 2019.
  39. ^ "UCF Facts 2017-2018 - University of Central Florida - Orlando, FL". Retrieved July 15, 2018.
  40. ^ "UC Facts". University of Cincinnati. Retrieved July 15, 2018.
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  42. ^ "Record Enrollment". Retrieved July 15, 2018.
  43. ^
  44. ^ "UofM Facts at a Glance - About UofM - The University of Memphis". Retrieved July 15, 2018.
  45. ^
  46. ^ "StudentEnrollment2017 - SMU". Retrieved July 15, 2018.
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  48. ^ "Facts and Figures - Tulane University". Retrieved July 15, 2018.
  49. ^ "TU Fast Facts - The University of Tulsa". Retrieved July 15, 2018.
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  51. ^ The Official Site of The American Athletic Conference – Sponsored Sports. American Athletic Conference. Retrieved on June 10, 2014.
  52. ^ "American Athletic Conference to Sponsor Women's Lacrosse Beginning in 2019" (Press release). American Athletic Conference. October 11, 2017. Retrieved October 16, 2017.
  53. ^ "New Southland Bowling League Established". Southland Conference. January 20, 2014. Retrieved January 24, 2014.
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  55. ^ "BCS Chronology". Fox Sports. Archived from the original on April 18, 2008. Retrieved November 12, 2008.
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  58. ^ Wolken, Dan (April 25, 2013). "Questions and answers for the College Football Playoff". USA Today. Retrieved April 25, 2013.
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  60. ^ a b "Salaries & Contracts". Coaches Hot Seat. Retrieved September 19, 2016.
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  63. ^ "American Athletic Conference picks Memphis to host league's 1st men's basketball tournament". Washington Post. Archived from the original on June 13, 2013.
  64. ^ Schlabach, Mark (February 20, 2017). "NCAA denies Louisville's appeal, rules Cardinals must vacate 2013 national title". Retrieved February 20, 2017.
  65. ^ "AAC tournament host site picked". ESPN. Retrieved June 30, 2014.
  66. ^ "NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Records Through 2012–13" (PDF). NCAA. Retrieved March 18, 2014.
  67. ^ "AAU Member Institutions and Years of Admission". Association of American Universities. Retrieved June 6, 2014.
  68. ^ a b "Carnegie Classifications Institution Lookup". Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. 2014. Retrieved April 30, 2015.
  69. ^ "National Association of College and University Business Officers" (PDF). National Association of College and University Business. 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 23, 2017. Retrieved April 30, 2015.
  70. ^ "Best College Rankings and Lists". U.S. News & World Report. 2016. Archived from the original on May 21, 2011. Retrieved July 15, 2018.
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  72. ^ "University Ranking by Academic Performance – United States of America 2016–2017". Informatics Institute, Middle East Technical University. 2017. Retrieved June 30, 2017.
  73. ^ "ESPN signs 12-year, $1 billion deal with AAC, moves lots of games to ESPN+". Awful Announcing. March 19, 2019. Retrieved May 3, 2019.
  74. ^ "AAC, ESPN Agree To 12-Year Media-Rights Deal Worth $1B". Retrieved May 3, 2019.
  75. ^ Murschel, Matt. "AAC leader Mike Aresco touts new media rights deal, addresses ESPN+ criticism". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved May 3, 2019.

External linksEdit