Brigham Young softball will join the Western Athletic Conference beginning with the 2011-12 academic year.

Last fall, Brigham Young announced its football program would become independent. At the same time, school officials said most of the rest of the sports program would join the West Coast Conference. The school belonged to the Mountain West Conference since July 1999.

The West Coast Conference doesn’t sponsor softball.

In the WAC, Brigham Young’s softball team will compete with Fresno State, Hawaii, Louisiana Tech, Nevada, New Mexico State, San Jose State and Utah State.

“The WAC looks forward to working with BYU and its softball program and expects this partnership to be a ‘win-win’ for all involved, especially all of our student-athletes,” said WAC Commissioner Karl Benson.

Before joining the Mountain West, Brigham Young was a founding member of the WAC, where the Cougars competed for 37 years.