2023 Fall/Winter 2023

A new era


The energy was palpable as students, alumni, athletes, donors, staff and faculty gathered in the Armstrong Fieldhouse to celebrate. A cloud of red and blue confetti filled the air.

The Mustang Band played Queen’s Don’t Stop Me Now while the pom squad and cheerleaders danced along. The rumors had proven true: SMU was joining the Atlantic Coast Conference by invitation.

“We’re finally back where we belong,” said SMU Board Chair David B. Miller ’72, ’73 to a cheering crowd on September 1. “I firmly believe that the conference just got stronger – a lot stronger – with the addition of the SMU Mustangs.”

But the celebration wasn’t just confined to those who found themselves in Armstrong Fieldhouse that Friday afternoon. The buzz online generated a reach of 13 billion, including 526 million impressions.

In just three days, SMU experienced a 103% increase in visitors to the undergraduate admissions homepage – people were talking.

“As a child who was born into being an SMU fan in 1988, this is lifechanging,” Andrew Conwell ’11, ’17 shared via Instagram. Sara McKenna ’03, another proud Mustang, commented on LinkedIn: “It’s about time!!”

SMU will officially join the conference on July 1, 2024, while the University of California, Berkeley and Stanford University will follow on August 2. The ACC boasts 15 members, including Boston College, Clemson, Duke, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Louisville, Miami, North Carolina, NC State, Notre Dame, Pitt, Syracuse, Virginia, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest.

Founded in 1953, the conference is in its 71st year of competition and enjoys a reputation as one of the strongest and most competitive intercollegiate conferences in the country. ACC schools have won 173 NCAA team championships, 196 NCAA men’s individual titles and 181 NCAA women’s individual titles. And now, SMU is taking its place within this esteemed conference.

“From early on in my tenure here on the Hilltop, we had a vision to reestablish SMU Athletics as a nationally recognized and relevant program, one to complement our outstanding academic reputation,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner.

“In addition to its influence on our Athletics programs, being formally associated with the outstanding academic institutions in the ACC will also be beneficial to the academic community of SMU.”

Over the past decade, all of SMU’s 17 athletic programs have reached postseason, and 15 of those programs have won conference championships.

Since 2013, SMU has invested over $250 million to develop and enhance championship-caliber facilities.

“We have a great story to tell institutionally and athletically,”

SMU Director of Athletics Rick Hart told the crowd at the announcement celebration.

“If you want to accomplish big things, you ride with the Mustangs. I’m blessed every day to ride with the Mustangs.”

And it didn’t take long to accomplish some of those big things.

In just seven days, a group of 30 donors, including trustees and key supporters, raised an unprecedented $100 million to support the transition to the ACC. This first effort launched a drive for all Mustangs to financially support SMU’s move to the ACC.

“When we announced on September 1 that SMU would be joining the ACC, I was highly confident that we would be able to cover the cost of the transition into what is one of the top three collegiate athletic conferences in the country,” said Miller. “To be able to raise this level of support in such a short period of time is astounding.”

Donations aren’t the only way fans are showing their excitement. Just two weeks after the announcement, men’s basketball season ticket sales jumped by 30%, and hundreds of new football season tickets were sold.

“The news has energized not just our fan base, but the Dallas community,” said Hart.

Alumni February 2020 News

Occasional rivals, but Mustangs forever

When the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs met in Super Bowl LIV on February 2, SMU was represented by a Mustang football great and an SMU soccer alum and prominent business leader. Emmanuel Sanders lined up at wide receiver for the 49ers, while Clark Hunt is part owner, chairman and CEO of the Chiefs.
In 17 games this season, Sanders has 66 receptions for 869 yards and five touchdowns. In his first two games in San Francisco, Sanders registered touchdown receptions, becoming the first 49er to do so since Paul Salata in 1950.
For nearly two decades, Hunt has been with the Chiefs leadership, helping the club to the playoffs six of the past seven seasons.
Read more at SMU Athletics.

2019 News September 2019

Mustangs play at home on Saturday, September 7

Fresh off a 37-30 victory on the road last week against Arkansas State, the Mustangs will host UNT on September 7. Kickoff is at 6 p.m. in Ford Stadium.
CJ Sanders was named the AAC Special Teams Player of the Week after a 98-yard kickoff return TD against Arkansas State, while Xavier Jones earned an honor roll nod for a three-TD performance in the opener.
Read more at SMU Athletics.

2019 August 2019 Main

Welcoming a game changer to the Boulevard

SMU welcomes the community to celebrate the dedication of the Indoor Performance Center, featuring Armstrong Fieldhouse, at 7 p.m. on Friday, September 6. An open house will follow, providing an opportunity for everyone who attends to tour the newest facility resource for the entire campus. A transformative presence on Bishop Boulevard, it features an indoor turf field and training, fitness and special event spaces.
Read more about the Indoor Performance Center.

2019 August 2019 News

Football season is just around the corner

Fall isn’t in the air yet, but football sure is. Mustang fans are invited to Football Fan Day on Saturday, August 17, at the Pettus Practice Field. Come out and watch the team practice, while enjoying food trucks and other family-friendly activities. The event begins at 7 p.m. and admission and parking are free.
The Mustangs will hit the road for the season-opener against Arkansas State on August 31. Check out ticket options, and get those pony ears in shape.
Read more at SMU Athletics.

2017 Alumni News October 2017

SMU Homecoming 2017: Friends, football and fun

Come back to the Hilltop for Homecoming, November 2–5, 2017! Reconnect with your friends, reminisce where you began an important part of your life and celebrate the achievements and momentum propelling SMU toward an ever-brighter future.
This year’s celebration begins with the Distinguished Alumni Awards, a prelude to a weekend packed with activities. Choose from among a range of concerts and performances, as well as special exhibitions at SMU’s museums and libraries. Celebrate 100 years of Mustang spirit and Mustang jazz with the Mustang Band at the Pigskin Revue. And enjoy the excitement and fun of the annual parade and the Boulevard, all leading up to the Mustang football team’s game against the UCF Knights.
A highlight of the weekend for many returning Mustangs are the reunion class parties on November 3, where alumni catch up on old times, share memories and reconnect with one another at some of Dallas’ best-loved venues as well as great spots on campus with food, drinks and entertainment.
Student Foundation has been hard at work to make this the most memorable Homecoming yet. Join your Mustang family in November and experience the best of SMU.
Read more at SMU Homecoming & Reunions.