Howard University appears ready to make a move out of the MEAC and into a new conference.
Multiple sources tell HBCU Gameday that Howard officials are prepared to move to the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) starting in the 2023-2024 season. HBCU Gameday has reached out to Howard University Athletics officials for comment.
Howard would become the 14th full member of the CAA on July 1, 2023, joining College of Charleston (Charleston, S.C.), University of Delaware (Newark, Del.), Drexel University (Philadelphia, Pa.), Elon University (Elon, N.C.), Hampton University (Hampton, Va.), Hofstra University (Hempstead, N.Y.), Monmouth University (West Long Branch, N.J.), North Carolina A&T (Greensboro, NC) University of North Carolina Wilmington (Wilmington, N.C.), Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.), Stony Brook University (Stony Brook, N.Y.), Towson University (Towson, Md.) and William & Mary (Williamsburg, Va.). CAA Football would expand to 15 members.
The CAA and Howard have been involved in on-going discussions since at least 2021, sources indicated to HBCU Gameday.
Howard University would be the third HBCU in the last four months to join the FCS conference. Hampton University and North Carolina A&T were both accepted into the conference earlier this year, Hampton in January and A&T in February. Both schools have long and storied history with Howard. Hampton and Howard were two of the founding schools of the CIAA (along with Shaw University, Virginia Union and Lincoln (PA) in 1912, while A&T and Howard were both founding members of the MEAC in 1970.
A Howard departure would leave the MEAC with just seven full members: Delaware State, Coppin State, Morgan State, Maryland-Eastern Shore, Norfolk State, North Carolina Central and South Carolina State.
Hampton and North Carolina A&T are both set to leave the Big South and join the CAA on July 1, 2022. A&T will remain in the Big South for football until 2023.
Howard, meanwhile, would remain the MEAC for the 2022-2023 academic year.
The CAA currently conducts championships in 22 sports. Male athletes compete for championships in baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, lacrosse, soccer, swimming & diving, tennis and outdoor track & field. Female athletes battle for conference titles in basketball, cross country, field hockey, golf, lacrosse, rowing, soccer, softball, swimming & diving, tennis, outdoor track & field and volleyball. With the addition of Hampton, Monmouth, North Carolina A&T and Stony Brook in 2022-23, the CAA will add championships in men’s and women’s indoor track & field.