Blog Entry

C-USA, Mountain West all-sports merger on horizon

Posted on: December 7, 2011 4:41 pm
Edited on: December 7, 2011 6:03 pm
 

NEW YORK – With the Mountain West and Conference USA losing at least five members to the Big East, those two leagues are now looking at an all-sports merger instead of a full-scale football expansion as originally planned, sources told CBSSports.com.

Conference USA and the Mountain West initially planned to combine into a separate football-only league with between 20 and 24 members and conducted an Oct. 15 press conference to announce the news. The winners from C-USA and the Mountain West would meet in a playoff with, they hoped, the winner earning a BCS bowl berth.

A BCS bowl berth, however, would have had to be approved by the BCS.

However, that plan has lost steam by the loss of Boise State, San Diego State, Houston, SMU and UCF to the Big East. Instead, C-USA and the Mountain West are considering a merger in all sports. Sources have indicated that Craig Thompson, the current commissioner of the Mountain West, would become the commissioner of the new merged league, while Conference USA commissioner Britton Banowsky would step down.

A vote on the merger could come by next month, sources said.

The merged league would consist of: East Carolina, Marshall, Memphis, Rice, Southern Miss, Tulane, Tulsa, UAB and UTEP from C-USA and Air Force, Colorado State, New Mexico, UNLV and Wyoming from the Mountain West along with new members Fresno State, Hawaii and Nevada for a 17-team conference. Air Force was being sought after by the Big East, but the Gazette reported Tuesday evening that the Falcons would remain in the Mountain West.

After the initial merger announcement to as many as 24 schools on Oct. 15, Banowsky e-mailed officials at Conference USA and the Mountain West a week later about a proposed new conference, entitled “BCS and The Big East Expansion (An Alternative Plan).”

“Attached is a document that might find of interest regarding conference realignment,” Banowsky wrote on the e-mail, obtained by CBSSports.com.

That eight-page document presented two possible conferences mergers: one with 28 teams and another with 32 teams. They included all the Big East, Conference USA and Mountain West teams, plus a few other teams from other leagues. The plan was never endorsed by the Big East and didn’t get much further than being reported by various media outlets.

To combat the departures of the five schools, the Mountain West had decided to add San Jose State and Utah State. But adding those schools has now been put on hold, sources said.

Comments

Since: Aug 17, 2006
Posted on: December 9, 2011 10:14 am
 

C-USA, Mountain West all-sports merger on horizon

This is sad,  all these conference changes it hopes of getting or keeping a BCS AQ Berth, and now they are talking about eliminating the AQ all together.   

What bad management,  the powers of the main conferences create a silly system,     the left out schools try to get into the system then the powers that be decide to change the rules again, probably to keep them out again.  


Some TV network offer Billions to televise the 8 or 16 team tournament to the NCAA and watch the conferences sign up very quickly becuase of the money.     



Since: Aug 17, 2006
Posted on: December 9, 2011 10:14 am
 

C-USA, Mountain West all-sports merger on horizon

This is sad,  all these conference changes it hopes of getting or keeping a BCS AQ Berth, and now they are talking about eliminating the AQ all together.   

What bad management,  the powers of the main conferences create a silly system,     the left out schools try to get into the system then the powers that be decide to change the rules again, probably to keep them out again.  


Some TV network offer Billions to televise the 8 or 16 team tournament to the NCAA and watch the conferences sign up very quickly becuase of the money.     



Since: Aug 14, 2009
Posted on: December 8, 2011 3:09 pm
 

C-USA, Mountain West all-sports merger on horizon

www.ecu.edu/undaunted



Since: Dec 25, 2009
Posted on: December 8, 2011 2:13 pm
 

C-USA, Mountain West all-sports merger on horizon

I hate what is going on all across the country. 

Conferences are so meaningless now.  They used to hold long time rivalries and enhance the relationships among schools.   I cheer for my teams in my conference in pre and post conference play, and I cheer against them during conference play.  It's fun this way.  Like competitive high schools from the same county.  If conferences keep changing like this, how can we even tell the strength of a conference?

Conferences should be regional and enduring....period.   This is really making college sports boring.



Since: Dec 25, 2009
Posted on: December 8, 2011 2:12 pm
 

C-USA, Mountain West all-sports merger on horizon

I hate what is going on all across the country. 

Conferences are so meaningless now.  They used to hold long time rivalries and enhance the relationships among schools.   I cheer for my teams in my conference in pre and post conference play, and I cheer against them during conference play.  It's fun this way.  Like competitive high schools from the same county.  If conferences keep changing like this, how can we even tell the strength of a conference?

Conferences should be regional and enduring....period.   This is really making college sports boring.



Since: Nov 24, 2008
Posted on: December 8, 2011 11:39 am
 

You have to be kidding

This sounds a little too crazy.

Here is the more likely scenario:

MWC adding San Jose and Utah State as originally planned

and

C-USA can poach Western Kentucky and Middle Tenn from the Sun Belt and LA Tech from the WAC




Since: Dec 7, 2011
Posted on: December 8, 2011 9:52 am
 

C-USA, Mountain West all-sports merger on horizon

Goat, Loserville is what we called Louisville back when we beat them 10 straight years. Louisviile basketball program does well but the football program is average revenue wise. I am not sure what comparing Louisville to Boise has to do with it, but Boise will be down next year after losing Kellen Moore. 



Since: Feb 18, 2008
Posted on: December 8, 2011 9:21 am
 

C-USA, Mountain West all-sports merger on horizon

Actually makes sense.  However, have you noticed something in the vast majority of schools moving into a BCS conference?  The size of schools' metro area populations ... UCF (Orlando) ... Houston ... SMU (Dallas/Ft. Worth) ... Pittsburgh ... Syracuse ... San Diego St.  Now granted, Boise St. and WVU do kinda hurt my argument a bit ... until you realize the 2nd biggest factor - football considerations, and both of those 2 have been very good in recent years.

While ECU and Marshall moving to the Big East makes sense when you look at a map, neither the Huntington, WV or even the Greenville, NC metro area is very enticing when their conference goes to negotiate a TV right deal.  Temple to the Big East makes sense (Philadelphia), but I doubt the Big East is very enthralled by Temple's committment to having a solid football program, rather just pick up their share of BCS money.  Memphis is the school that I'm surprised hasn't/isn't being courted by any BCS conference - I guess factor #2 - football considerations are biting them there.  Meanwhile UL and UC to the Big 12 is more a just a lateral move ... and I figure they're probably happy in the BE due to basketball considerations.




Since: Nov 19, 2006
Posted on: December 8, 2011 9:18 am
 

C-USA, Mountain West all-sports merger on horizon

Oddly enough, this "new" conference would be better off at 16 teams, meaning that the Air Force should go to the Big East.  If this article is correct, there would be two 8 team conferences.  The West would consist of Hawaii, Nevada, UNLV, Fresno State, Colorado State, New Mexico, Wyoming and UTEP, while the East would consist of the remaining CUSA teams.  If the Air Force remains in this new conference, then they face an odd number of teams, and a scheduling nightmare similar to the one that the SEC is going through now trying to figure out a 13 team schedule.  Ofcourse all of this is still contingent on the Big East going through with it's plans, which is contingent on the Big 12 remaining at 10 teams, which now is a bit "iffy" because of the Big 12 being snubbed by the BCS.  This whole Conference Reallignment is about as sturdy as a House of Cards.



Since: Aug 17, 2006
Posted on: December 8, 2011 8:45 am
 

C-USA, Mountain West all-sports merger on horizon

Has anyone calculated the Carbon Footprint of the BCS with its Automatic Qualifing rules and silly system of only allowing two teams each year a chance at the national championship?      Houston, SMU and UCF going to the Big East in all sports, West Virginia going to the Midwest for all sports, that is really alot of plane rides that used to be bus trips or atleast shorter plane trips.   Not to mention the fans taking planes to road games.    Al Gore,  attack the BCS please. 


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