According to reports, Howard University will likely not join the Colonial Athletic Association, instead seeking to remain with its Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference. Learn more in the story from staff at DC Sports King below.

Howard University’s Steve Settle III shoots the ball. Photo Credit: Sam Thomas/Journal Star/USA Today Network

In what could be described as a huge upset in college sports realignment, Howard University has decided not to leave the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) for the Colonial Athletic Association. 

According to FCS insider Daniel Steenkamer, Howard recently informed the CAA that the school will not join the conference at this time.

Howard expressed interest in leaving the MEAC for the CAA recently. Conversations led to Howard verbally committing to pursue membership with the CAA, according to Steenkamer. The Bison would have joined the CAA during the start of the 2023-24 academic year.

However, in the end, Howard opted to pass on the opportunity. 

Howard’s decision is considered a huge win for the MEAC, at least in the short-term. The historically Black athletic conference has been decimated by departures in recent years. 

Five schools have left the conference since 2019. Howard’s biggest rival, Hampton, left the conference in 2019 to join the Big South. Savannah State returned to Division II the same year. 

Last year, Florida A&M and Bethune-Cookman left for the SWAC. Meanwhile, North Carolina A&T joined Hampton in the Big South.

Howard would’ve been part of a bigger expansion plan in the CAA. Hampton will join the CAA in July while North Carolina A&T will follow in every sport except football and bowling. A&T’s football team will join the conference in 2023. Additionally, Stony Brook will become a full-member of the CAA along with Monmouth.  

Howard remains one of three founding members of the MEAC to never leave the league. MEAC’s other members include Delaware State, South Carolina State, Coppin State, UMES, Morgan State, Norfolk State and North Carolina Central.