The University of Iowa University of Iowa

Maryland joins Big Ten, effective 2014


The Big Ten Conference has added another school.

The University of Maryland will join the Big Ten on July 1, 2014. The Big Ten Council of Presidents/Chancellors unanimously approved the addition Monday morning, as Maryland’s athletic teams will begin competition in all sports for the 2014-15 academic year.

Maryland president Wallace D. Loh and director of athletics Kevin Anderson were instrumental in the move. Loh is a former provost at the University of Iowa.

The school submitted a written application to join the Big Ten on Monday, which had to be approved by at least 70 percent of the Big Ten Council of Presidents/Chancellors.

Maryland will benefit exponentially both in terms of conference revenue and television revenue, and overall exposure. Reports have already surfaced projecting that Maryland could make as much as $100 million by 2020 by moving from the ACC to the Big Ten.

Projections for all 13 Big Ten institutions in terms of annual revenue result in about $43 million starting in 2014, according to Sports Illustrated.

This is the Big Ten’s newest school since the addition of Nebraska in 2011. Prior to that, the most recent member addition was Penn State in 1990 to push the total number of schools from 10 to 11.

Some of the biggest population growth in the United States exists in the Washington D.C. and Baltimore area, which is the market that houses Maryland. Ultimately, the Big Ten Network will be able to have a wider reach as well as the conference as a whole.

“We’re a conference that now lives in two areas of the country,” Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany said during a Monday teleconference with reporters. “One Midwestern, one Mid-Atlantic.”

Additionally, more games will likely dot both football and basketball schedules.

With 13 schools — and possibly 14 as soon as this week with a potential addition of Rutgers — there is an opportunity to play more teams within the conference.

Loh and Anderson said Monday this is a chance for Maryland to revive several sports that were eliminated from their campus last year. Currently, the Terrapins have 20 men’s and women’s sports programs.

During the teleconference, Delany noted the geographic shifts that have occurred nationally as of late, a contributing factor to the Big Ten’s addition of the Terps.

“There’s been a lot of changes in intercollegiate athletics within the last decade,” Delany said. “One of the paradigm shifts relates to conferences moving beyond their boundaries. We stayed with 11 institutions for 21 years … Almost every conference is out of their national footprint [now].

“We needed to explore how we might become larger. When we looked around, we realized how great this corridor was around Maryland.”