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 Post subject: Go West Young Men?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2004 1:37 pm 
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"With the 19th pick of the realignment draft, CUSA selects UTEP (mild shouts of surprise) of the Western Athletic Conference."

With that announcement the WAC was back on the clock, with various media pundits previewing the best picks remaining. Among them:

Idaho - "Hey, nobody would steal them from our ranks."
UNT - Football. Dallas. And no one would likely steal them, either.
ULL - Consider the remaining options.

While the WAC offers more short-term benefits over the Belt, I'd be very leary of joining the conference if I was UNT or ULL for the reasoning offered below. Opinions welcome.
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Idaho alone won't quite satisfy the WAC's NCAA needs in other sports but more members may be preferrable anyway for security. UNT and ULL would ease the total travel costs in going east, but the vast dispersal issue would remain and grow dire should the MWC pull away another western member. Idaho and either of the eastern schools would expound that problem further, and I'm wondering if it would mean the WAC would forever be tied to just the two eastern schools.

Consider: CUSA already passed on the chance to add UNT, La Tech or ULL. Assume they need to pursue another expansion for someone other than Tulane or SMU (similar markets as above). Would these be more likely options?

FIU or FAU - 1A novices, yes, but rich Florida market(other than Tampa) and insurance in case UCF moves on to BE waters.

NMSU - A true travel partner to/for UTEP

WKU - Hey, if they're considered for the MAC, CUSA
would make even more sense. New market, decent basketball, ease travel for CUSA east.

MTSU - If above doesn't work out, perhaps Memphis would allow this. Larger population base than La. Tech.

Don't expand - Possibly financially appealing if the conference loses 2-3 football members like UCF, Rice and Marshall.

Given the above options, it's safe to say CUSA may never seriously consider UNT or La. Tech. Now presume the WAC needs to reload after a MWC raid. You'd see the remainder of the UNT/ULL/Idaho group then other names like Sacremento St., Montana and/or Montana St. But by this point it's safe to assume the highest profile schools and/or markets have left and the conference's appeal and strength have severely diminished.

So, assume the following givens:
Idaho
SJSU
NMSU
Utah St.
Hawaii
UNT
La Tech

Then consider the following exchanges alone or as a whole:

Sacremento St. for Fresno St.
Montana for Boise St.
ULL/N. Arizona for Nevada

Under such circumstances, the WAC truly would not earn enough money to make ends meet, IMO. By that point, it's also concievable the Belt will have settled in. No powerhouse, but stable while everyone else around them reaches full capacity again. Is it possible to say, then, that UNT and La. Tech might be more secure, long term, in the Belt? I can at least say in all confidence the more the WAC depends on an eastern front, the less stable the WAC will be as a whole.




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 Post subject: Go West Young Men?
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2004 4:05 pm 
SacrAmento.

Who is trading who? Sac for Fresno? UM for Boise? ???


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 Post subject: Go West Young Men?
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 8:00 am 
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Jim,

My apologies for the hastily typed State capital. Sacramento. Got it.

As for the trading, the assumption above has the WAC losing any number of existing members (Fresno, Boise, Nevada) and then seeking out appropriate replacements (Sac St, Montana, and so on.) I'm trying to gauge the long term health of the conference and whether or not La Tech and UNT can help both the conference and themselves thrive in such an arrangement. If not it may be better for them to consider the Belt more closely.


Last edited by gunnerfan on Fri May 07, 2004 8:00 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Go West Young Men?
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 8:38 am 
I think you are right on in your assessment. Long term is the key. A short term grab or hastily formed alliance will hastily disband again.

Sacramento State is almost ground zero for being in the middle of the WAC. SJSU, Nevada and Fresno State all being a 3-4 hour drive. Add UC Davis and the WAC would have 5 teams in a regional nutshell.

That would be optimal for cost containment and market saturation. I could see both Sac and Davis being long term members.



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 Post subject: Go West Young Men?
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 9:06 am 
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Location: Portland! (and about time!)
Leagues want their markets saturated with as few schools as it takes to do the job.

Leagues seek to maximize revenue with TV money more than with gate receipts.

Of course, this all assumes that the WAC is still around. ???


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 Post subject: Go West Young Men?
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 12:41 pm 
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Davis may be the eventual key here for the WAC.
Can they wait long enough?

Davis just made the jump to 1AA, however they are a solid football school with a long history. Sac State has more "issues" long term relative to football stability. Once Davis qualifies at 1AA, it would not surprise me to see them make the next step up to 1A with the WAC. By that time they may be welcomed/needed for long term viability.
8-)


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 Post subject: Go West Young Men?
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 1:54 pm 
"Sac State has more "issues" long term relative to football stability."

Such as?


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 Post subject: Go West Young Men?
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 5:37 pm 

Quote:
"Sac State has more "issues" long term relative to football stability."

Such as?


Budgetary...CSU probably hit harder than UC, although committment appears to be there from admin. to continue football support.

Attendance...No better than Davis, who should get a bump from moving to D-I, although no guarantee.

Competitive...Davis has been D-II power, SacSt. hasn't won anything in a long time, although perhaps a change to Great West Football will help?

Don't get me wrong. Sac State, if it remains competitive and viable long term could be an answer for the WAC. It just appears that UCD could step in front of them with continued success and cut in front very readily.

Not meant to be a knock on Sac.St. Just appears to be the current reality.
8-)


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