I-A College Football
                  === UMass to leave MAC after 2015 season ===
 Amherst,   MA  (SportsNetwork.com)  -  The  University  of  Massachusetts  has
 decided  to leave  the Mid-American Conference, effective at the conclusion of
 the 2015 season.
 The Minutemen, who participated in the Football Championship Subdivision until
 2011,  joined the  MAC as a football-only member for the 2012 season. However,
 UMass  athletic  director John McCutcheon  said on Wednesday that the school's
 decision to withdraw was based on a decision by the MAC President's Council to
 exercise  a contract  clause to offer the school either full MAC membership in
 all sports or an out after two more football seasons.
 "While  the report  is not complete, we believe full membership for all sports
 in the MAC is not a good fit for us," McCutcheon said in a statement. "Because
 most of the MAC schools are in the Midwest, the additional travel would strain
 our  athletic budget  and pose considerable time management challenges for our
 student  athletes. We  are  confident  that, within  the  next  two years,  we
 will find a more suitable conference for our FBS football program.
 "We  remain committed  to FBS  football. Many  institutions have  successfully
 navigated this challenging period of conference realignment and we will do the
 UMass  has competed in  the Atlantic 10 in all other sports since the league's
 inception in 1976.
 Under  Charley Molnar,  the Minutemen finished the 2013 season at 1-11 overall
 with  a  1-7  record in  the  MAC.  To  accommodate  the move  into  FBS,  the
 school  relocated  its  home  games from  western  Massachusetts  to  Gillette
 Stadium, 30 miles southwest of Boston and 90 miles from campus.
 03/26 16:56:36 ET

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