Mark Blaudschun of TMG Sports first reported that UConn will be paying a $17 million exit fee to leave the AAC, which was then confirmed by multiple reports, including the Hartford Courant, who added that UConn will be officially joining the Big East in July of 2020.
UConn made the news official with a press release later in the morning.
The exit fee will be paid in part by two lump sums which represent withheld payouts from the AAC contract, covering around $11 million. UConn will make annual payments over six years for the remaining $6 million, so ultimately it seems that this is the only money coming out of pocket.
Athletic Director David Benedict said he was pleased with the outcome of the finalized deal, which also contained a stipulation for four home-and-home basketball series between UConn men’s or women’s hoops and the AAC in the coming years.
In a press release, UConn noted the immediate plans for the future of the football program.
“UConn has decided that FBS Independent status is the best course of action for the football program and will proceed with plans to construct a football schedule for the 2020 season and beyond.”
The Courant’s Mike Anthony shared some insight on what the independent schedule will look like, implying that Husky fans should be pretty excited.
If things I hear UConn is working toward actually come to fruition, the schedules (even starting in 2020) are going to be more interesting than any AAC slate was. This could be fun. https://t.co/1SANaHl4hQ— Mike Anthony (@ManthonyCourant) July 26, 2019
I'd bet on seeing a lot of P5 schools of national and regional interest as home and away games ... ACC and SEC, some attractive independent matchups. It's a complicated, incomplete and unofficial puzzle but UConn will be able to put get attractive games for Rentschler. https://t.co/nLzC3PYqsk— Mike Anthony (@ManthonyCourant) July 26, 2019