Blog Entry

Have the BCS and BYU talked regarding access?

Posted on: August 23, 2010 2:44 pm
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You have to assume that BYU's schedule as an independent is not a problem. At least not as big a one as I believed in the beginning.

The Salt Lake City Tribune reported last week that it was a "done deal" that BYU's football program was going indy. You don't get that far down the road without having a reasonable idea that there will be enough teams to schedule. Whether the WAC lives or dies, there's still a chance to play four to six of the remaining teams. Notre Dame could be sprinkled in every now and then. Throw in the two service academies, Army and Navy. That still leaves, at least, four games remaining.

But, again, I'm going to assume BYU has that figured out.

The real reason that BYU is in Purgatory West, rather than the Mountain West at this point is TV revenue. It's no secret the administration is not satisfied with The Mtn., the league's four-year old network which has yet to turn a profit. BYU may be talking to ESPN for both carriage of some of its games and as a partner to line up opponents as an independent.

The questions might be: What kind of deal is ESPN willing to do with BYU as an independent vs. what kind of break MWC will give BYU in terms of television exposure outside The Mtn.

Another huge reason for BYU's waffling, it is becoming clear, is its BCS access. It can line up a schedule. It can get more games on ESPN. But the only way it gets closer to a BCS bowl without having to go back to the MWC hat in hand, is to get easier access to the BCS. I have reason to believe BYU and BCS parties have talked. Could it be about improved access? As an independent BYU, along with Army and Navy, would have worst access to a BCS bowl. Those three teams would have same access point: Ranked No. 1 or No. 2, automatic. Other than, no automatic access point. Those three teams would be eligible if they finished in the top 14 of the BCS. BYU finished No. 14, its highest BCS finish, in 2009 and still was trumped by Florida, Iowa and Boise State as at-large teams.

 Remember, there are only four available at-large spots (out of 10) for independents. The other six spots (seven if Notre Dame qualifies) are taken up by the BCS conference champions.

The feeling is that BYU would have gone independent and placed its minor sports in the WAC had Craig Thompson not plucked Fresno State and Nevada. Now BYU has to determine if it wants to put its minor sports in the WAC (what WAC?), the West Coast Conference or the MWC. In the case of the last option, it's doubtful the MWC would allow BYU to put its minor sports in its league if football was independent.

Right now, no one has full leverage. BYU can't find enough games, improved access or more television money at the moment. The MWC doesn't want to lose BYU because it might lose The Mtn. Thompson wouldn't confirm there is language in the contract that allows The Mtn. to dissolve if Utah and/or BYU leave. That, however, is the assumption.

We are in Day 5 of a strange standoff.

For entertainment purposes only here are BYU's games already scheduled through 2014 (source: San Jose Mercury News).

2011

Utah
Oregon State
Texas
Utah State
Games needed: 8

2012

Oregon State
Utah State
Boise State
Hawaii
Utah
Games needed: 7

2013

Texas
Boise State
Hawaii
Utah
Games needed: 8

2014

Texas
Boise State
Utah
Games needed: 9

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Comments

Since: Aug 21, 2008
Posted on: August 23, 2010 4:30 pm
 

Yup, BYU isn't afraid of UT or OU, but BSU. scary



corona79
Since: Sep 3, 2006
Posted on: August 23, 2010 4:20 pm
This comment has been removed.

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corona79
Since: Sep 3, 2006
Posted on: August 23, 2010 4:16 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Aug 30, 2006
Posted on: August 23, 2010 4:08 pm
 

Have the BCS and BYU talked regarding access?

You sure BYU just isn't afraid of playing Boise St. in football? InnocentLaughing



Since: Jan 27, 2009
Posted on: August 23, 2010 3:39 pm
 

Have the BCS and BYU talked regarding access?

As a BYU fan, I would love to see them go independent in football but I hate to see where their other sports are going to land.  The WCC seems like the other viable option right now, but they don't have all the sport BYU does.  BYU had a top flight men's gymnastics team, top 3 in the nation, then Title IX took care of that.  I would hate to see BYU lose some of their other great programs get nixed because of football desires. 

If we do go independent I would be ecstatic if we did yearly competitions against Notre Dame, Army, and Navy.  Furthermore, why couldn't those three schools round out the November schedule?  Certainly they would have the same concern to have competition in November and it seems like a yearly rivlary with a notable foe would help all concerned.  BYU could also continue its rivalry with Air Force.  I don't pretend BYU is a service academy, but honestly I respect the service academies and their athletes, and that is why I would like to keep playing them.  BYU also had a great rivalry with Hawaii in the past.  It sounds like Hawaii may go independent as well when all is said and done (and a great place to visit in November!).  If BYU could lock in the service academies, Notre Dame and Hawaii to close out the year that would be great. 

Furthermore, people love rivlalry weekend.  If Notre Dame and BYU played rivalry weekend every year?  Think about it.  That would be a highly anticipated game, well attended and would garner huge national attention.  It could even help either team get a BCS bump every year.




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