Blog Entry

C-USA contacts Temple; MWC merger changes weekly

Posted on: February 8, 2012 10:50 am

After Memphis’ decision to leave for the Big East on Tuesday, Conference USA officials immediately contacted Temple to gauge the Owls’ interest in moving from the Mid-American Conference to C-USA, college football industry sources told

Temple thought it would receive the Big East’s invitation and was stunned the Big East invited Memphis. The Owls were former Big East members before getting dismissed from the league in 2004. Temple has been a member of the MAC since 2007 and in the past three seasons has a 26-12 record under former coach Al Golden and current coach Steve Addazio.

It’s unknown if the Owls would welcome a move to C-USA since there’s still the possibility the Big East could have more future openings if the Big 12 expands to 11 and takes Louisville. If that happens, Temple would be back on the Big East’s radar.

The future of Conference USA is also unknown. C-USA and the Mountain West are considering a merger or will dissolve the two leagues into one. With Memphis gone, will the leagues still combine or decide its better to go at it alone? One source said the possibility of the C-USA/MWC merger “changes weekly.”

If C-USA and the MWC did combine as an all-sports league it would consist of: Southern Miss, Marshall, East Carolina, UAB, Tulsa, Rice, UTEP and Tulane from C-USA and Wyoming, Air Force, Colorado State, UNLV, New Mexico, Fresno State, Nevada and Hawaii from the MWC. Hawaii would be a football-only member, making a 15-team all-sports conference and a 16-team football conference, not including Temple.

The benefits of the combined league, sources say, would be stability, increased potential television revenue and the additional exposure across the country in new markets. They also would be able to conduct a conference championship game in football. C-USA currently has a championship game, the Mountain West doesn’t.

If the leagues decide to remain as they are could they survive with all of the defections? The Mountain West will be losing TCU, Boise State and San Diego State, while C-USA will lose Houston, UCF, SMU and Memphis. The television revenue for each league would not be as substantial.

As unwieldy as a 15- or 16-team all-sports league stretched across the country may seem, it still likely would provide more long-term stability – at least until one of the current BCS AQ conferences decides to expand again and the dominoes continue to trickle down to the MWC and C-USA.

So does Temple join forces with C-USA or hold out hope for a Big East invite? Does C-USA combine with the Mountain West? We’ll have to wait and see, but the fact that in 2013 seven of the Big East’s 11 football members are former C-USA members (Louisville, Cincinnati, South Florida, Houston, Memphis, UCF and SMU) was not lost on one college football industry source.

“Perhaps the Big East can save time and take the rest of Conference USA’s teams,” quipped the source. “Then take C-USA’s name and divide the league into Red, White and Blue Divisions (as the league once had in the 1990s).”

Since: Feb 10, 2012
Posted on: February 10, 2012 10:43 pm

C-USA contacts Temple; MWC merger changes weekly

Con USA need to invite Temple,UMass,M.Tenn.,N.Texas. UTEP can move to the MWC with Utah St. Than Conf. USA can invite Louisiana Tech.
Conf. USA West: Tulsa,Rice,S.Miss.,Tulane,N.Texas,Louisiana Tech
;     &nbs
p;    East: ECU,UAB,Marshall,Temple,UMass.,M.Tenn.   

MWC can invite NM State and San Jose St.

MWC West: Nevada,UNLV,Hawaii,Utah St.,Fresno St.,San Jose St.
;   East: Colorado St.,Air Force,Wyoming,New Mexico,UTEP,NM State

 MWC and Conf. USA need to stay seperate and up the exit fee at 20 mil. They need to do some kind agreement like the PAC 12 and BIG.

 Sun Belt can invite Georgia St.,Jacksonville St.,App. St.,Charlotte and have 12/13 teams or invite Oral Roberts to have 12/14.
West: Arkansas St.,UL-Monroe,UL-Louisiana,S.Alalbama,Troy,Jacksonville St.
East: FIU,FAU,App. St.,Georgia St.,Charlotte, W.Kentucky   

 WAC can invite Lamar,Sam Houston St.,Montana,Weber St.,Sacramento St.,Portland St.,Montana St.,Utah Valley and I will not let Boise St. join and have 10/14. UTA and Utah Valley are talking about adding football.  

West: Idaho,Seattle,Montana,Montana St.,Sacramento St.,Portland St.,Weber St.   

East: Texas St.,Lamar,UTSA,Sam Houston St.,Denver,Utah Valley,UTA     &n
bsp;     &

Since: Oct 6, 2006
Posted on: February 9, 2012 11:40 pm

C-USA contacts Temple; MWC merger changes weekly

Considering the size of the athletic department at Temple, I don't think the Big East is the place for them -- neither is Conference USA if it merges with the Mountain West.  Temple is perfectly placed right now, but I understand if they want to step up the ladder.  Maybe they would be better to join the ACC. 
Not exactly sure what you mean by the size of Temple's athletic department not being a fit with the Big East but a better fit with the ACC. Temple would jump at the chance to be in the ACC but there's the minor detail of getting invited.

I'm thinking the best option for Temple is to have the Atlantic 10 beef up its roster of similar schools to withstand the super conference onslaught going on all around them.  What if the A-10 raids Conference USA for East Carolina and Marshall or, better yet, merges with the Patriot League so it could have a football roster of teams to accomodate Temple (among others) and keeps everybody in-house?
I disagree with your thinking here. I wouldn't call adding teams like Marshall and East Carolina beefing up a basketball conference, nor combinig with the Patriot League. Who exactly did you have in mind in the Patriot League anyway, Holy Cross, Bucknell, Lafayette? The fact is that Temple has more in common with the schools in the Big East than it does with the teams you suggested except for possibly ECU.  Temple is a large State related University with a current enrollment around 30,000.  It has a brand new state of the art basketball practice facility, a great campus arena that hols 10,200 and the option to play at the Wells Fargo Center.  Football plays at an NFL stadium.

As far as the money sports, Temple would already be competitive in the money sports, basketball and football.  I think the problem is that Temple's located in the East so they don't seem a logical fit for the Big East.

Since: Jan 16, 2007
Posted on: February 9, 2012 10:13 pm

C-USA contacts Temple; MWC merger changes weekly

MWC and WAC in Football (12)
Wyoming, CSU, Air Force, New Mexico, New Mexico State, UTEP (moving from CUSA), UNLV, Nevada, Fresno State, Hawaii, Idaho, Utah State

This will never happen. If you are familiar with the history of the WAC and the MWC, you would know why. The MWC came about because the WAC became large and several schools broke away and formed the MWC. They would never reconsolidate, not a chance in H, there is far too much bad blood there.

Too many people on here are trying to justify the conferences by geographical location and then in the same breath are supporters of SDSU and BSU going to the Big East. If geography is your logic, why would UTEP playing UNM, which is 270 miles from each other, be out of the question? CSU and AFA are just another 400 miles north of that. I think many people on here just do not know where many universities are. Go west my son, this country is large and there are many places west of the Mississippi...or pull out a map once in awhile. Barton had a grasp on this, just was totally unfamiliar with the history of the WAC and MWC.


Since: Sep 18, 2011
Posted on: February 9, 2012 6:22 pm

C-USA contacts Temple; MWC merger changes weekly

Temple averaged about 30,000 fans at home games in 2011.  And they're TV ratings for their two recent bowls were impressive.  TU had a better football recruiting class than all of the new BE members but for Houston.  And its basketball team is currently 18 in the power rankings.

Academically, Temple is ranked at about the level of Clemson - which is to say at the bottom of the ACC.  However, the ranking has been gaining every year, and the graduate schools (business, law, medicine, dentistry, pharmacy) are all top tier.  Temple is a more comprehensive institution than Wake Forest, NC State, Va Tech. Miami, Boston College or Clemson.

That said, that quaint finishing school located in Villanova will make sure they are kept out of the BE.  As a TU fan, I can tell you that the prospect of being kept out of BE football becomes less disturbing every day.  We don't want to be like Rutgers and lose millions on athletics every year.

Unfortunately, with its recent loss of members, the CUSA is not a good fit.  I suspect that TU will stay where they are until things shake out. 

The BE is not stable.  It's Providence College overlords are laughing their a_ses off at the fees they collect from Rutgers, UConn, Cinci and Louisville to "administer" the "football conference".  And now they're going to get $11M from West Virginia as a settlement?1?!  It's P-A-R-T-Y time over at the BE offices in Providence!!!

Since: Jun 13, 2009
Posted on: February 9, 2012 3:07 pm

C-USA contacts Temple; MWC merger changes weekly

The merger of MWC and CUSA is a good thing.  If they maintain their strength in football, the basketball could come around.  I think Southern Miss and UAB could thrive without Memphis to burst their bubbles.  I would like to see these two leagues form a conference and find success.  If they can succeed it will knock some wind out of the conference carousel that everyone is on.  I am glad Memphis got the Big East invite but I will miss the rivalries with Southern Miss and UAB.  Temple might be a really good fit in this league.  And this could open up some invites for some teams that are ready for a breakthrough.  Murray St might want to step up from the OVC.  It could be a good mover.  Just some thoughts.

Since: Nov 24, 2008
Posted on: February 8, 2012 10:32 pm

C-USA contacts Temple; MWC merger changes weekly

Nevada and Fresno ST are coming to the MWC in all sports, and Hawaii will join in football only in 2 years.

Since: Jan 16, 2007
Posted on: February 8, 2012 7:04 pm

C-USA contacts Temple; MWC merger changes weekly

Am I missing something with this report? Nevada, Hawaii and Fresno St. are in the WAC and I have not heard of any changes on that horizon. This moving and transfers and mergers are becoming rediculous. Soon, you will see a team like Memphis that is a member in the Big East for football only, a member of the C-USA for basketball only, a member of MAC let's say for baseball only, etc etc etc. As far as merger, MWC is like any other conference in the nation, strong in one event, weak in another. MWC is excellent in basketball but now leaves nothing to offer for football since BYU, Utah, TCU, SDSU, BSU left and rumor of AFA leaving but holding out for the C-USA/MWC merger before decisions are made. A conference that desires to increase their cash flow in their BB arenas will absorb this disappearing conference fast. This is why C-USA is looking at the merger with MWC outside the scope of just football. Living in NM, we get the news on this just about daily and the big hold-up is the total merger and not just the football there, basketball there, baseball there and golf here. The conferences hired a firm to evaluate the TV contracts across all sporting events and not just football. I think the two will merger, either partially or completely, but either way, the MWC will be dissolved within 3 years.

Since: Nov 2, 2006
Posted on: February 8, 2012 7:02 pm

C-USA contacts Temple; MWC merger changes weekly

Just say no to Conference USA, especially if they are intending to merge with the Mountain West.

Maybe Marshall and East Carolina should join the MAC for football and the A-10 for basketball so they don't get stuck in a western league.

Since: Jan 22, 2012
Posted on: February 8, 2012 5:11 pm

C-USA contacts Temple; MWC merger changes weekly

I don't really see what Temple would add to C-USA.  Are they supposed to be a travel partner with Marshall?  (its probably around 400 miles between Huntington and Philly)
500+ actually...  That's definately not going to be a bus trip!!

Since: Jan 22, 2012
Posted on: February 8, 2012 5:06 pm

C-USA contacts Temple; MWC merger changes weekly

The BigEast should get Temple for the TV market but as usual they let a hoops only school ( Nova) keep them from doing something that could help the conference.
Nova is going to move up to FBS in the next few years.  This is the reason for the defections of Pitt and Syracuse.  Both wanted to add worthy football competition, but the basketball schools derailed the expansion.  The addition of Memphis is just another token to keep hoops in power.  With hoops in charge, Nova is going to throw a fit to keep Temple out.

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