The BCS dictates all expansion moves.
Is Boise going to be able to play itself into the Mountain West? I'm not sure what the BCS conference automatic qualifier rules are but Boise is well on its way toward meeting those standards.
Could Boise be enough to put the MWC over the top?
The rule for qualification of a non-BCS school is:
1. It qualifies for an automatic bid if it is ranked in the top 12 & is the highest ranked non-BCS conference champion. Boise State is currently ranked #15 by the BCS formula.
2. It qualifies for an anutomatic bid if it is ranked in the top 16 AND is ranked highe than at least one BCS conference champion AND is the highest ranked non-BCS conference champion. Right now Boston College leads the ACC & is ranked #17 by the BCS formula. So, if the season ended today, Boise State would receive an automatic BCS bid.
3. Any team that finishes in the top 14 is BCS bowl eligible & MAY be selected as an at-large team. Right now Boise State is not BCS bowl eligible under this provision. Eveh if they could move up into the top 14 by season's end, I do not see a BCS bowl selecting them over a team that would bring higher TV ratings. However, if Boise State remains unbeaten as is likely & is BCS bowl eligible, I think that there would be tremendous pressure on the BCS to find a way to include them. After all, the BCS expanded to 5 bowls for this very situation - to provide access for outstanding bowl-worthy teams from among those conferences that were not prviously eligible. It would be very interesting to see what happens.
Boise State's toughest games are behind them. It will be very difficult for them to move up in the rankings, given their remaining strength of schedule & it will not be difficult for schools ranked lower like BC to jump over them. I do not think that Boise State will make it to a BCS bowl this year as either an automatic or an at-large selection.
Could Boise State put the Mountain West over the top? Probably not any more than Marshall would have been the ticket to save the Big East a few years ago.
My question was asking more to the effect what are the automatic qualification rules for conference. What does a conference need to do to be classified a BCS conference? I think they are looking at a 4 year rolling average of how well a conference performs (04',05',06',07').
In 2004, Utah and Boise had big years. In 2005, TCU had a big year. In 2006, Boise State again had a big year. The MWC seems to be close in terms of overall league strength to command a BCS bid. Would a good year by the Mountain in 2007, plus Boise State runs be enough for this conference to get into the BCS?
There is a lot of football to be played this season, and if Boise continues to win, they should make a BCS game. They are already rated above any ACC team and elgible with few challenges remaining on the schedule.