TCU announced Monday that the university has accepted an invitation to join the Big 12.
Chancellor Victor J. Boschini Jr. said the university's trustees had accepted an invitation to join the Big 12 Conference.
"This is a big day in the history of Texas Christian University," Boschini said.
Athletic director Chris Del Conte said the opportunity is "living proof that dreams do come true."
"Joining the Big 12 brings us back to share a rich tradition with a lot of schools that we already have natural rivalries with," Boschini said. "It connects us with schools that are committed to the same level of academic excellence that we are."
Big 12 Commissioner Chuck Neinas said he was happy to welcome TCU home.
"TCU has an outstanding record with student athletes," he said. "You take a look at their APR and their graduation rate, and you can see they emphasize 'student,' and then you take a look at their success, and that's athletes."
The Big 12 issued a public invitation to TCU on Thursday.
Monday's move could provide some much-needed stability to the Big 12, which lost Nebraska (Big 10) and Colorado (Pac-12) over the summer and will lose Texas A&M to the Southeastern Conference next year. Missouri is also exploring a move to the SEC.
Several Big 12 coaches welcomed the idea of having TCU in the league.
"TCU has earned that right. They've won as much as anybody. I think they are very deserving," Texas coach Mack Brown told reporters earlier Monday in Austin.
Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops, whose staff recruits heavily in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, echoed those sentiments.
"I think it's great, you know? They're an excellent program," Stoops said. "You see what they've been doing throughout the year. I love the proximity for the fans. It's another game that's relatively close and in this region, so I think it's great. It's going to work out well."
TCU is currently in the Mountain West Conference and was set to join the Big East in July.
Del Conte said TCU will pay an exit fee, but declined to confirm it was the $5 million required by the Big East policy. If TCU had been a member of the conference, it would have had to give a notice of 27 months.
The TCU Horned Frogs football team finished No. 2 in the country last year after a 13-0 season and a Rose Bowl win over Wisconsin.
The Associated Press' Angela K. Brown contributed to this report.