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UMass to depart A-10, join Mid-American Conference in 2025

Hatchet File Photo by Olivia Anderson | Photo Editor

The University of Massachusetts will leave the Atlantic-10 Conference to join the Mid-American Conference as a full member beginning in the 2025-26 academic year, The Athletic reported Monday.

The Minutemen, following the move, will no longer be a conference opponent in any sport against GW and will end UMass’ time in the A-10 after a stint that lasted nearly 50 years. UMass’ departure marks the first school to leave the A-10 since 2013, when four teams left as a part of a larger NCAA conference realignment.

The departure of the Minutemen leaves only GW and Duquesne as the lone founding members of the conference. With Duquesne briefly leaving the A-10 in the 1990s, GW is the only continuous team in the A-10 Conference.

The Minutemen’s move to the MAC means their conference opponents will include Akron, Ball State, Bowling Green, Buffalo, Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Kent State, Miami (OH), Northern Illinois, Ohio, Toledo and Western Michigan. They will be the furthest geographical team east in the conference, with the closest school, Buffalo, being about 400 miles away.

As for the A-10, the conference will drop to 14 full-time members and retain the three associate members they have in men’s lacrosse and field hockey.

The conference will be losing its second-largest school in terms of enrollment. UMass trails George Mason for the largest enrollment in the conference, while GW ranks fifth.

UMass’ move likely centers around its football program, as prior to this announcement, the team was FBS Independent. This allows them to play conference games and contend for conference titles, something that the A-10, as a nonfootball conference, did not allow. UMass is currently the only A-10 team with an FBS program.

From a basketball perspective, the GW men’s team currently carries a 46-31 record over the Minutemen, with the most recent game being a Minutemen victory by a score of 81-67 on Jan. 20. In February 1995, GW beat the number one-ranked UMass team for their first and only victory over an AP number one team.

The GW women’s basketball team carries a 44-12 record against the Minutewomen. They most recently defeated UMass 59-55 on Feb. 24.

UMass most recently won both the 2022-23 women’s lacrosse regular season championship and tied with URI for the 2022-23 women’s basketball regular season championship.

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