The Mid-American Conference and the University of Massachusetts jointly announced this week that the 2015 football season will be the final year for UMass as a member of the conference.
“UMass has been a valued partner during its brief time within our Conference, however, the 2014 and 2015 seasons will be the final two football seasons for UMass as a football-only member in the MAC,” said MAC Commissioner Jon Steinbrecher in a press release.
UMass joined the MAC as a football-only member on April 20, 2011. The team was previously aligned in the Atlantic 10 Conference, which houses the other 20 varsity athletic teams, 9 for men, 11 for women.
Their inclusion brought MAC football membership to 14 universities that season, bringing balance to the East and West divisions. The MAC previously lost its balance when Temple departed.
The decision was made after the MAC President’s Council elected to exercise a contract clause that offered UMass the choice of becoming a full member for all sports, remaining a football-only member for two years, Athletic Director John McCutchen said in a press release. UMass elected to use the 2014 and 2015 seasons as their final years, citing the distance from other MAC schools being an obstacle for their other sports.
“This is not the outcome we anticipated when UMass was admitted as a football-only member. However, circumstances changed regarding our football membership and this is a result of those circumstances,” Steinbrecher said.
UMass finished last season 1-11 and 1-7 in the MAC, with their only win against Miami 17-10. Since their inclusion in 2011, their overall conference record stands at a dismal 2-14.
Central Michigan is 2-0 against the Minutemen, winning last season 37-0 and 42-21 the previous year.