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Missouri State announces it will join Conference USA

Missouri State University cheerleaders carry flags as the MSU Pride Band plays at a previous Homecoming game.
Missouri State University
Missouri State University cheerleaders carry flags as the MSU Pride Band plays at a previous Homecoming game.

Missouri State University in Springfield is leaving the Missouri Valley Conference and will join Conference USA as a full-league member.

The change takes effect on July 1, 2025, which means Missouri State will remain in the Missouri Valley Conference for the 2024-2025 academic year.

MSU officials said the move officially places the university in the NCAA’s exclusive Division I Football Bowl Subdivision for the first time.

“We certainly believe that we’re capable of competing and that it brings a higher profile, more exposure and brand awareness, not only to our institution but to our student athletes that participate,” said Kyle Moats, Missouri State’s athletic director.

Missouri State University will become the 12th full-time member of CUSA. Other members are:

· Florida International University (FIU), Miami, Florida

· Jacksonville State University, Jacksonville, Alabama

· Liberty University, Lynchburg, Virginia

· Louisiana Tech University, Ruston, Louisiana

· Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, Tennessee

· New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, New Mexico

· Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas

· University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP), El Paso, Texas

· Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky

· Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw, Georgia (joining July 1, 2024)

· University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware (joining July 1, 2025)

The Bears will compete in CUSA in the sports of football, men's and women's basketball, baseball, softball, volleyball, women's soccer, women's cross country, men's and women's golf, women's tennis, women's track and field and beach volleyball.

Men’s soccer and swimming and diving are currently not part of CUSA’s sport sponsorship profile, and MSU officials said they’ll have information about those in the coming months. Moats said their initial thought is that they might stay in the Valley with those sports, if that's an option. If it's not, they'll look at other conferences. Ideally, he said, he'd like all three sports to go to the same conference.
Copyright 2024 KSMU

Michele Skalicky has worked at KSMU since the station occupied the old white house at National and Grand. She enjoys working on both the announcing side and in news and has been the recipient of statewide and national awards for news reporting. She likes to tell stories that make a difference. Michele enjoys outdoor activities, including hiking, camping and leisurely kayaking.