Blog Entry

MAC reorganizes after Temple departure

Posted on: March 7, 2012 4:24 pm

Since 2007, the Mid-American Conference had somehow avoided the musical chairs that is better known as conference realignment.

That all changed on Wednesday when Temple officially announced it was leaving the MAC to join the Big East Conference.

The Owls had been football members of the MAC since 2007, but will join the Big East as an all sports member. Temple’s football team joins this fall, while its Olympic sports won’t join the Big East until the 2013-14 school year.

“I don’t think it was any secret they wanted to be in the Big East,” MAC commissioner Jon Steinbrecher told . “But it took a lot of interesting circumstances in the last 12-16 months to set in motion what happened.”

What happened – at least this is the cliff notes version – is the Big East lost West Virginia and TCU to the Big 12 for this fall and Pittsburgh and Syracuse to the ACC in either 2013 or 2014. The Big East was left with only seven football members and had to add Temple to have an eight-team conference this fall.

Temple and the MAC reached a $6 million settlement – more than double the $2.5 million required for a team providing at least two year’s notice. Temple also will pay the Atlantic 10 $1 million for removing its Olympic sports before the 2013-14 season.

With the loss of Temple the MAC moved Bowling Green from the MAC West to the MAC East. The MAC will have 13 football members this fall.

The seven-team East will consist of Akron, Bowling Green, Buffalo, Kent State, UMass (which makes the move up from the FCS ranks), Miami (Ohio) and Ohio. The six-team West will consist of Ball State, Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Northern Illinois, Toledo and Western Michigan.

Despite the loss of Temple, Steinbrecher said the MAC is not looking to immediately add another team.

“We’ll take a deep breath and watch and see whatever occurs and evolves [on the conference landscape] and make our decisions based on what’s best for the Mid-American Conference,” Steinbrecher said. “Our core membership is very solid.”

MAC teams will play eight game conference schedules this fall. The schedule is expected to be released in the coming weeks, Steinbrecher said.


Since: Oct 2, 2007
Posted on: March 7, 2012 9:36 pm

MAC reorganizes after Temple departure

The only problem with all of this is neither Villanova or Delaware is actually in DII ... they are in the Football Championship Subdivision - full-fledged members of Division I.

Since: Nov 18, 2007
Posted on: March 7, 2012 9:06 pm

MAC reorganizes after Temple departure

undertow- Agreed:  ND St would be a good addition to the NAC

Since: Nov 9, 2011
Posted on: March 7, 2012 8:52 pm

MAC reorganizes after Temple departure

Hard to beat eh? Well competition is a good thing and temple never won their division, let alone the conference. The only issue is that they have 13 teams, however they have had 13 since temple joined so they can already work it. I wonde if they got after WKU in a few years.

Since: Dec 30, 2006
Posted on: March 7, 2012 8:11 pm

MAC reorganizes after Temple departure

I have to agree with CubsFan1981, Nova's board had a chance to join the Big East but didn't because of their dominence at the DII level. They didn't want to come in and be a bottom feeder in the Big East. I'm not sure Delware wouldn't feel the same way. If you're a big-time DII program what's the real allure of joining a conference like the MAC (bottom-feeder conference in DI?)

Since: Mar 19, 2008
Posted on: March 7, 2012 7:56 pm

MAC reorganizes after Temple departure

Pack, why on earth would Nova jump to FBS just to join the MAC, hello, Big East conf members already?!!! Think before you post.

Since: Nov 13, 2006
Posted on: March 7, 2012 7:40 pm

MAC reorganizes after Temple departure

The MAC could easily add Villanova or Delaware as football only members if they needed to go to 14.  Both programs have competed for national titles recently.  Villanova would also keep the MAC in the Philadelphia market.  Villanova is just not big enough to work as a Big East football member, but they would work great in the MAC.

Since: Apr 23, 2007
Posted on: March 7, 2012 7:35 pm

MAC reorganizes after Temple departure

Oh, they're moving Bowling Green from West to East. Epic fail on my part. It would be nice if I would take a second to comprehend what I am reading.

Since: Apr 23, 2007
Posted on: March 7, 2012 7:33 pm

MAC reorganizes after Temple departure

Maybe I'm missing something, but couldn't they just slide UMass into Temple's former spot? Why do they have to move a team in the West Division? If so, who aligns the divisions in the MAC? The same guy that once had Arizona in the NFC East and Atlanta in the NFC West?

Since: Aug 26, 2008
Posted on: March 7, 2012 7:08 pm

MAC reorganizes after Temple departure

The article doesn't explicitly state that Bowling Green is already in the East and was set to be in the West for 2012 when it was expected that the MAC would have 14 teams. So in essence, Bowling Green isn't "moving" to the East as much as it is staying in the East.

What the MAC may end up doing is just scrapping the released 2012 schedule in favor of what would have been the 2012 schedule had UMass not joined and the simple replace the "Temple" slot with UMass for conference play. Non-conference schedules should be fine. In the end, any scheduling mess shouldn't be too disruptive.

The MAC record books also come out relatively unscathed, as Temple never managed to win its division, much less the Conference title.

Since: Jan 25, 2012
Posted on: March 7, 2012 5:58 pm

MAC reorganizes after Temple departure

Add North Dakota State in 2013 to the West. Play a nine game schedule with each team playing everyone in it's division, two cross divisional games that rotate every 3 to 6 years, and the designated rivalry game.

I'd be more interested in that conference than the Big Least conference when Syracuse and Pitt go to the ACC.

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