i posted this in the cusa general alignment thread in response to a question, but it makes more sense here.
here is the link to the article explaining the wac's woes.
however, idaho would do a lot to help them meet the numbers requirements.
Quote:But if Louisiana Tech leaves the WAC for Conference USA, as has been speculated upon, the WAC would have the minimum numbers of participating schools in only four sports — men's basketball, football, golf and tennis.
they would need to qualify in two more men's sports.
Quote:With New Mexico State and Utah State but minus Louisiana Tech, the WAC would have five members in cross country, four in outdoor track and three in indoor track.
adding idaho would give them six in cross country, five in outdoor track, and four indoor track, increasing the number of sports in which they qualify from four to five. easy solutions include adding gonzaga and portland to outdoor track making the number of schools in that sport seven, and the number of sports sponsered w/ the required number six. gonzaga and portland are in the wcc for most of their other sports, and wouldnt seek affiliation for anything else, mainly basketball.
portand could also be added for indoor track as could uc riverside, which is happy in the big west for all their other sports. adding these two would give the wac six indoor track schools keeping them eligible for an auto bid and increasing the magic number from the required six to seven.
Quote:Without Louisiana Tech, for example, the WAC would be left with just four baseball-playing members (Fresno, UH, Nevada and San Jose State). Of New Mexico State and Utah State, the two new members who come aboard in 2005, only New Mexico State has baseball but at least six members are necessary for the conference to retain its automatic NCAA Tournament bid.
so even with idaho, who doesnt offer baseball, the wac will only have five baseball playing members, and will be in need of one more to keep the auto bid. affiliate options include sacramento state and the university of hawaii at hilo. sac. st. is in the big sky for everything else and uh hilo is d2 for everything else, so neither school will want more than what is offered.
other options for affiliate membership are texas am cc, ut pan american, and utah valley state college. these three are indy in virtually everything, including what the wac needs: indoor and outdoor track, cross country, and baseball, and may not mind filling in the gaps when needed. however, these schools may demand full afilliation for there participation for helping keep the wac alive.
in closing, losing la tech won't doom the wac. idaho would be a valuable member as it would give them six members in five sports as well as give football the preferred nine. if idaho is added, only one affiliate member will HAVE to be added in either outdoor track or baseball, though the wac will probably prefer having six schools in all the sports they sponser.