INDIANAPOLIS, In. (WCIA) — A big topic of conversation at the Big Ten Media day involved the future of the conference.

Illinois athletic director Josh Whitman says he’s excited about the direction the Big Ten is headed. Whitman said the conference can hold strong to the values it’s always had, but also evolve. He said the geographic rivalries are important, but he wants athletes to get the chance to play in new places.

“I really am excited about the future of the Big Ten Conference,” Whitman said. “I’m really excited about the future of the University of Illinois. I think that both Illinois and the Big Ten are well positioned to be leaders in the national landscape as it continue to evolve.”

USC and UCLA will be joining the Big Ten Conference in 2024.