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More Potential Big Sky Developments, SUU Announcement?

Category: Big Sky Expansion & Realignment, Featured News

There’s been some chatter of talks involving the Big Sky and North Dakota, South Dakota and Southern Utah. And while UND is also speaking with the Summit League, there is now talk that perhaps as soon as Wednesday, the Big Sky could be making a move involving Southern Utah. 

At the SUU Monday Coaches Luncheon, SUU President Dr. Michael Benson told attendees to prepare for a Wednesday an “exciting announcement”. 

A South Dakota St. beat writer has been told though that there is no scheduled SUU press conference.

With the recent discussions amongst Big Sky schools, there is reason to believe Southern Utah might be brought into the Big Sky as either a full member or a football-only member. Full membership makes the most sense if it were done in preparation of a Montana departure to the WAC. Full membership in the Big Sky for SUU would bring the current total to 10 schools with 12 for football (Cal Poly and UC Davis will be joining as affiliate members). 

North Dakota and South Dakota remain options for Big Sky membership as well. However, if SUU were brought in as the 10th all-sport member, it is not known if the conference would want 12 all-sports members and 14 football members.

Reports have claimed that the Big Sky discussions with SDU and NDU only include all-sports membership and that football-only membership is not on the table.

But if this Wednesday Southern Utah press conference does happen and they do move to the Big Sky, it will clear up much of the future regarding the two Dakota schools.

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  • If they lose any other members, then those members will look to leave at the first chance because they will more than likely never get a bid to the NCAA Tournament.

  • The only effect on the Great West schools is that the Great West will be smaller. They won't "look for other conferences" because they are all already doing that. It is a marriage of convenience and that won't be changed by any 2 schools leaving.

  • Well, it seems the Great West Conference is done before it really ever started. If the Dakota schools and Southern Utah do indeed leave, that would leave the other schools almost no choice but to look for other conferences, such as the Summit League. I don't think that those schools want to go back to being independent.


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