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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Sat Jul 26, 2003 8:39 am 
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Its going to be an interesting dogfight to see who turns out to be more proactive, the MWC or the WAC. MWC already has a committee that has been given the green light to identify prospective teams, but sounds like WAC folks are going to be equally aggressive....

http://www.chron.com/cs/CDA/ssistory.mpl/sports/2013002

7/27--link above no longer active, here is a slightly different version of the above interview which perhaps will stay active a little longer:
http://www.latechsports.com/article.php?article_id=2003_07_25_11:51:33


Last edited by javaman on Sun Jul 27, 2003 6:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2003 9:54 pm 
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I would suggest:
UL - Lafayette - decent FB, great BB, great Baseball
and either North Texas or Arkansas State


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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Mon Jul 28, 2003 12:57 am 
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ULL has a good basketball team but not really a great football team. Furthermore, the football team will have challenges in meeting the new I-A criteria so I am not sure the WAC would be interested.

North Texas has an improving football program so they might look better.

They might also add some of the Conference USA teams (Houston, Tulane or even TCU) should that conference implode.


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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Mon Jul 28, 2003 8:17 am 
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Quote:
ULL has a good basketball team but not really a great football team. Furthermore, the football team will have challenges in meeting the new I-A criteria so I am not sure the WAC would be interested.

North Texas has an improving football program so they might look better.

They might also add some of the Conference USA teams (Houston, Tulane or even TCU) should that conference implode.


The Cajuns made 15k last year with rain at every game. 5 1-A home games isn't a problem, neither are scholarships.

UL has never been 1-AA and never will be.


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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Mon Jul 28, 2003 1:52 pm 
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Quote:


The Cajuns made 15k last year with rain at every game. 5 1-A home games isn't a problem, neither are scholarships.

UL has never been 1-AA and never will be.


exactly - the only problem you will have is overcoming the egos over at Tech.


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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2003 11:08 am 
Hey, javaman...thanx for the info. The WAC maintains that it's schools are stable, but I know Fresno State is actively and openly seeking PAC 10 or MWC affiliation. I follow the FSU Bulldogs closely, and getting to a stronger conference is a HUGE priority. Still, what else could Benson say... ?


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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2003 12:10 pm 
Commissioner Benson on the hunt?Check him out at www.dfw.com/mld/dfw/sports/colleges/6762965.htm.


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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 2:47 am 
WAC boss eyes TCU, 2 others, for expansion
By Damien Pierce
Star-Telegram Staff Writer

Western Athletic Conference commissioner Karl Benson has asked university presidents within his league to take advantage of Conference USA's uncertain future by recruiting two schools for a 12-team league with two divisions.

Houston television station KRIV obtained an internal letter Benson sent to the league's 10 presidents in which Benson said he wants to recruit two of three schools from Conference USA. The universities on Benson's wish list are TCU, Houston and Tulane.

"I'm not going to comment on an internal document they have claimed to get a copy of," Benson told the Star-Telegram. "We're still monitoring the situation just like everyone else. But none of this is really new with the exception of them saying they have this document. We've expressed our desire to expand, and we'd love to have TCU."

In recent weeks, TCU has been reluctant to make a long-term commitment to C-USA and has expressed its desire to wait and see what happens with the league.

Two conference schools, Cincinnati and Louisville, are believed to be interested in moving to the Big East Conference, while Benson believes the Conference USA might target WAC teams such as Rice, SMU and Tulsa. C-USA would likely invite two of those schools to replace Louisville and Cincinnati.

TCU has not yet been "recruited" by the WAC, but university officials said they likely wouldn't change their stance if contacted.

"We've been saying this all along: We are going to wait and see what crystallizes before we make any decisions," TCU athletic director Eric Hyman said. "It's premature to think about any offer at this point. We have to wait until there is some movement and then decide what gives us the best opportunity to compete on a national level. Ultimately, when the dust settles, we're going to do what's best for TCU."

TCU is entering its third season as a Conference USA member and was a part of the WAC before leaving after the 2000 season.

In the letter obtained by the Houston television station, Benson prompted WAC presidents to take advantage of Conference USA's uncertain future.

"The WAC has a golden opportunity to secure its future and the athletic future of each of its members by creating its own 12-team league with two divisions," Benson wrote.

But the WAC commissioner warned in the letter: "Unless there is stability in the WAC West, and there is not a threat that the Mountain West will add one or more WAC teams, it will be very difficult, if not impossible to convince Houston, TCU or Tulane to join the WAC. Without stability in the West, it may also make it very difficult for Rice, SMU or Tulsa to decline a C-USA invitation if extended."

Benson did not deny the report, but did not want to comment on what he classified as an internal e-mail.


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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 6:05 am 
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This is in line with the general feel that C-USA is not being proactive, and everyone wondering why...

Also in line with the general feel that WAC people are not willing to sign letters of commitment to the WAC while things are unsettled...

Benson would like to get his ducks in a row, but doesn't seem to understand that many schools are looking to see what the fallout will be, before signalling intentions, and no-one wants to be the odd man out. Since WAC is not at the top of the hierarchy, this is probably a futile effort.

Complicating things is the MWC conference's slow pace of identifying possible members for expansion. The commisioner there has a host of new presidents and AD's to get on board with this process... If MWC identified two schools for certain expansion, the Western portion of the WAC would fall apart, just like the Eastern C-USA is in turmoil now, as dominos will fall from both coasts inward...

MWC is now where ACC was 6 months ago, except there is no-one leaking anything, and the media are probably much more sympathetic to MWC...

The game seems to be which of the three conferences on the edge (C-USA, MAC, WAC) will come out the best, and which will survive...

8-)


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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 9:49 am 
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This is another indication that Benson will go down swinging!

They are the player in the mix who is "ripe" for the picking.
CUSA will pick them off from the East, and MWC from the West.

Why would TCU RETURN to the WAC? ???
They just left them!
This is a commish who is pulling out all the stops to save his conference. If it disintegrates, he should hook on somewhere else, because it won't be due to his lack of effort. And who knows? The passive nature of CUSA right now may just allow him to pull this off!
However, the odds are stacked against Benson and the WAC.

8-)


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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Mon Sep 15, 2003 5:46 am 
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Do you think Benson will go after schools from conferences like the Big Sky and Big West. If he did lose's out to the MWC and CUSA on his current teams. I see him looking at Potential teams from these 2 conferences. ie Montana and Portland State has the fan base as for the crowd dunno. Thoughts

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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Mon Sep 15, 2003 8:12 am 
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I don't think any of the western 1-AA schools could cut it via the attendance requirement or the finances. Plus, Montana is not going to excite the bowls and TV execs the way Fresno St. is. For that reason, I think the WAC is in a more precarious position than CUSA, which at least has the clout and $$ to attract replacements for UL and UC. Were the WAC to lose 2 of its premier schools, it would not only lose status and TV appeal, but would also become much more cumbersome in its geography.

If the WAC were to go after SunBelt schools right now (say, N. Texas and NMSU) and offer a championship game next year, there's a chance no one would leave. Until something like that happens, they're playing with a weaker hand than the MWC and CUSA.


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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2003 11:36 am 
Backdoor to D-Morning-News article with Banowsky response to Benson letter at www.bayarea.com/mld/mercurynews/sports/6780483.htm.


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 Post subject: WAC Expansion interview
PostPosted: Wed Sep 17, 2003 5:35 pm 
D-Morning News is now reporting,"Athletic Director[TCU]Eric Hyman will visit with WAC commissioner Karl Benson on Saturday".They're having tea and crumpets?


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