• My Scores
  • NCAA FB
  • NHL
  • MLB
  • NFL
  • NBA
  • Golf
College Football Insider

Realignment really over? C-USA, Sun Belt discuss expansion pause

Western Kentucky and FIU will both be in Conference USA in 2014. (USATSI)

So now realignment has stopped.

The ACC's grant of rights two months ago effectively pumped the brakes on big-conference poaching, but one decision still loomed: Conference USA possibly going from 14 to 16 teams. Commissioner Britton Banowsky spoke extensively about this to me in April.

But C-USA presidents decided not to pursue a 16-team model for the foreseeable future as CBSSports.com first reported Tuesday. This closes the door on small-conference moves and probably limits the number of FCS schools transitioning into the College Football Playoff revenue pie.

The Sun Belt seems OK with this.

Sun Belt commissioner Karl Benson told me today he spoke with Banowsky on Tuesday and is "pleased to see the announcement.” The Sun Belt is losing FIU, FAU, North Texas, Middle Tennessee to Western Kentucky to C-USA in the next two years. In March, the Sun Belt back-filled with Appalachian State and Georgia Southern.

"Hopefully this will allow both C-USA and the Sun Belt to go forward in a stable way and allow both conferences to focus on competition rather than membership,” Benson said.

The Sun Belt will be an 11-team league starting July 1, 2014, Benson said, and though a 12-team model is “still a possibility,” the league won't further evaluate the issue until after the first of the year.

Maybe then someone like Liberty will get the call and make the difficult, often costly move to FBS. But for now, all 10 conferences appear stable.


Jeremy Fowler is a national college football insider with CBSSports.com. Fowler joined CBS in 2012 after covering the Minnesota Vikings for the St. Paul Pioneer Press for two seasons and covering the Florida Gators for the Orlando Sentinel for two years. Fowler is also a contributor to the CBS Sports Network.
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre

College Football Video

October 21, 2014
Amari Cooper on the Doug Gottlieb Show (6:45)
1 October 20, 2014
Javorius Allen 'Running Towards Success'
(5:07)
2 October 19, 2014
Palm's playoff/bowl projections (10/19)
(2:45)
3 October 18, 2014
Utah State at Colorado State recap
(2:48)

Latest

Most Popular

CBSSports.com Shop

Mens Kansas City Royals vs. San Francisco Giants Majestic Black 2014 MLB World Series Dueling Sweep Victory Roster T-Shirt

Kansas City Royals vs. San Francisco Giants
Get the Gear
Shop Now