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PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2007 12:41 pm 
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If the WAC can pull off a third bid to the BCS (assuming Hawaii makes it this year, and another team makes it next year), perhaps the WAC should look to expand:

Hawaii
Nevada
Boise State
Idaho
San Jose State
Fresno State

BYU (from Mountain West)
Utah (from Mountain West)
Utah State
Colorado State (from Mountain West)
New Mexico State
Louisiana Tech

Even better would be if Louisiana Tech left, which would allow the WAC to add Air Force, San Diego State, or UNLV. Adding a fourth Mountain West school would also cause the Mountain West to lose its automatic bid in basketball under the 6/5 rule.

Assuming the WAC only adds three, the surviving Mountain West schools would have to add at least two more schools to remain a conference for football:

San Diego state
UNLV
Air Force
Wyoming
New Mexico
TCU
UTEP (from Conference USA)
Houston (from Conference USA)
Tulsa (from Conference USA)

If the Mountain West goes under (assume San Diego State replaces Louisiana Tech), the Big Twelve becomes the Big Fourteen:

Big 14 Red - Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa State, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas Tech, Texas A&M
Bix 14 Blue - Air Force, Colorado, Missouri, Kansas State, Oklahoma State, Baylor, Texas

Conference USA expands all the way to sixteen:

C-USA West - UNLV, New Mexico, UTEP, TCU, SMU, Houston, Rice, Tulsa
C-USA East - UCF, ECU, UAB, Southern Miss, Marshall, Memphis, Tulane, Louisiana Tech


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2007 2:26 pm 
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This idea flunks the financial test. The MWC was formed when the gang of 5 decided the expanded WAC had grown too large. They organized a secret rebellion and took the 3 best remaining media markets with them (New Mexico, San Diego, and Las Vegas). This was not a random act. It was all about putting together the most lucrative TV deal possible. When they took the chance of expanding it is not a suprise that they only expanded by one team. It is also not suprising TCU had an enormous TV market --- making it financially viable in terms of TV --- and is a tier II academic school making it NOT A BURDEN for the conference in being judged as a future BCS conference.

Ultimately, they had hoped TCU would continue to go 10-1 or 11-0 every year for the next 10 years and really force the BCS issue, but TCU has not been making national conversation since joining the MWC and the MWC has too many academic and athletic anchors for serious consideration as a BCS conference.

On the feild excellence does not override or even figure in to BCS potential. While the MWC have really done a ton to cripple themselves as a conference, the TV market and academic realities really kill any chance of this occurring.

That said, I love the WAC, but they are somewhat poorly managed too, IMO. They would be smart to cherry pick FCS and IAAA and make themselves over as an elite football/basketball hybrid conference ala the Big East, but their comissioner and the heads of the member schools appear to be incapable of creative thought and too concerned with "protecting theirs". Nothing will ever become of the WAC until the member schools make a serious commitment to each other and shun MWC inclusion. I don't know if that will ever happen.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:55 pm 
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Yes, the MWC is the stronger conference. Unfortunately, they have failed to take advantage of the TV markets with this asinine .mtn deal. I live in the east but have an interest in the MWC. Though I get 30-35 games per Saturday with DTV, do you think MWC games are among them? Hardly ever.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2007 2:20 pm 
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I don't see the WAC taking any MWC schools in the near future. But I do see the MWC as a stepping stone for TCU to join the Big 12.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2007 11:08 pm 
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Westwolf, I do agree that the MWC has stupidly squandered their TV advantage. Subscription TV is capable of crippling any conference because it keeps newbies (sometimes known as recruits) from discovering the member schools' "brands".

Pf9, Joining the MWC has killed TCU. No TV is brutal to their recruiting. Whatever public sentiment TCU had outside of Fort Worth in Texas to replace Baylor in the Big XII is gone.

Frankly it would have been an uphill battle anyway. Baylor and TCU grads are in similar earning bands, but Baylor cranks out nearly twice as many. Baylor is closer to the state capital (no proof of this but there seems a higher incidence of politicians). And Baylor is the incumbent.

For TCU to get into the Big XII they would have to convince the rank and file non-affiliated Texan that they were more deserving of membership AND to get their congressmen to pass legislations forcing TCU in and Baylor out. Going 11-1 every year in CUSA while Baylor was going o-fer in the Big XII was doing that.

Going .500 or whatever they went on a conference nobody covers means nothing to anyone outside of the fort worth end of DFW.

The "DFW market arguement" is also non-sensical. The #1 and #2 schools in DFW are UT and A&M. They are already in the Big XII. The #3 may in fact be UNT, although SMU and TCU alums are much more affluent and therefore more valuable in TV viewership terms than UNT's. In strictly TV terms, replacing Baylor with Arkansas (financially impossible IMO), Utah (won't go without BYU), UNM, or even Tulane would make more sense.

TCU average attendance 2004-2007 33.2K
Baylor average attendance 2004-2007 34.8K

That, my friend, is a hard sell.


Last edited by finiteman on Tue Dec 04, 2007 11:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2007 8:28 am 
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Two things at a MINIMUM have to happen in order for any MWC to CONSIDER moving to the WAC:

1 - the WAC MUST get another BCS bid next year
2 - the mtn. must continue to flounder

The MWC is a better overal conference with larger athletic budgets, attendance, etc. That also lends itself to making it more difficult for teams to go undefeated.

I think it would be better for the MWC to goto 12 once it gets its network sorted out, cherry pick the best from the WAC (BSU, FSU, UNR, and Hawaii). That would settle things once and foreall. It would be EXTREMELY difficult for the WAC to recover from that.



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PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:58 am 
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In retrospect, the MWC probably should have gone to 12 and tried to deal a death blow to the WAC a few years ago.

Now the WAC is raking in BCS at-large money (although that is a spurious thing that won't necessarily continue - it's totally dependent on having an undefeated champ). The WAC is getting some late night ESPN exposure.

The MWC - neither ! Better TV markets, but not taking advantage of it.

It's hard to see the WAC being able to sell themselves to MWC teams to get them to jump to the WAC, unless there is some lucrative $$$ inducement.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2007 3:31 pm 
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I agree that the MWC should have done just that. Why BSU and FSU aren't MWC members now is mystifying to me.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 10:50 am 
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The BCS setup is an arrangement between the haves of college football --- the well funded, academically and athletically elites --- and the top bowl games --- businesses that make a living providing high viewership bowl games and filling very large stadiums.

The non-BCS FBS schools have 8-9 members ranked in the top two tiers academically and have 1 school (BYU) that has averaged over 40K in attendance over the last 5 years. The reasons are plainly apparent.

The best thing each non-BCS FBS school can do is get up to a 30-45K stadium add 10-15K seating to their football stadium every decade when attendance reaches 80% of capacity and spend the appropriate time and money to fill it and their basketball arenas. That is what Louisville did.

Academic improvement is difficult as the Have's make that distinction. Looking like a financially viable candidate for a bowl game is a lot easier.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 23, 2008 10:18 am 
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Why would the WAC want to take any of the Gang of Five.

If I were the WAC, I would try to steal away the three that went after the cash, but not any of the gang of five. And if BYU and Utah were to make it to the Big 12/14, I would race after New Mexico, SDSU and UNLV and watch the other three members of the gang of 5 scramble for Big Sky teams to fill their conference.

Justice!


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 4:27 pm 
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As whack as the MWC TV deal is, it still pays them about $8 million per year... if not 10. I forget which.

WAC... it may be ESPN, but it's $1 million per year.

END OF SUBJECT...

...OK, maybe not.

Anyone think the MWC will be able to sustain that cash flow in the next contract? That's the key here. However, I bet they'd still get a better deal than the WAC.

The lesson being learned in Boise... people LOVE a Cinderella story, but most everyone is already married to someone else. The Mountain West has the markets, not the WAC.

EDIT- BAD ANALOGY. People are far more loyal to their schools than they are to their wives.


Last edited by pounder on Tue Apr 01, 2008 4:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 21, 2008 9:19 pm 
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I have been harshly critical of this WAC raiding the MWC idea because money generally flows to the rich, however I can think of one scenario that could occur that might significantly change the equation.

Supposing the WAC formes an informal alliance with the Cal State system...?

Currently the Cal state and UC schools have an FCS home (the Big West) and a Div II home conference, The California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA). That allows their schools to move up and potentially down while maintaing cost effective footprints.

The UC schools have a potential FBS home in the PAC 10. Most realize thay won't reach that level and don't try. But there is no "Cal State home conference" at the FBS level.

What if the WAC offers to be the Cal State system's FBS home? Sac State wants to move up. WAC has Fresno and San Jose. Cal Poly may have FBS dreams, but the path to that was not in sight. If the WAC offered that kind of rubber stamp home to Cal State schools, could the Cal State system force San Diego to join the WAC to keep that path viable for interested member schools? (If such a thing were to happen Fresno would absolutely not be allowed to leave for the MWC.)

THAT I could see. I think the MWC would in turn steal Boise, but that is a huge TV loss in that trade. I would not be suprised to see TCU bail as well over the TV hit leaving the MWC at 8 schools, but much weaker and the WAC much more stable.


Last edited by finiteman on Tue Jul 22, 2008 4:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2008 8:59 am 
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I think I did a triple-flinch, Finite.

First- "nah. No way. The bulk of Big West schools won't get back into the football business, and Cal Poly is a long way from FBS."

Second- "wait a minute. San Diego State struggles to keep its football program. Being tied more locally might be in their best interests. An association with Fresno is nothing to sneeze at."

Third- "What will the TV contracts pay out in four years? Um, errrr, eh, hmmmmm..."

Current MWC: $82 million over seven years, 2006-2012 (or is it 2013?). Or is it $48 million?

Current WAC: $1 million a year, for 2004-2010, reported to be going up to $4 million in the next contract.

Stay tuned.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2008 3:56 pm 
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The WAC won't be raiding the MWC. To the contrary, BSU, FSU and either Nevada or Hawaii might go to the MWC.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2008 8:56 am 
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West, you're probably right... but it won't be the happiest marriage unless a minor miracle occurs. It also likely won't be 12.

The minor miracle is a bit complex. It comes in at least two parts:

(1) Will the next TV contract be as lucrative to the schools as the current one? I suspect not. I'm not convinced CBS College Sports is growing much. Their bread and butter seems to be C-USA, given the number of games they push off to Versus and the mtn. It's hard for me to believe that they could top their current contract. NOW, does that create pressure to expand the conference?

I'm not even sure the answer is yes.

If the answer is yes, there's only one school that could POTENTIALLY increase the overall market size. Hello, Fresno. Their basic coverage area alone (from Merced to Bakersfield) has more people than each of the states of the other schools you mention... and has about as many people as the combined sizes of the relevant markets of Honolulu, Boise, and Reno.

(2) Either Fresno's addition needs to be big enough to add to the PER SCHOOL PAYOUT of the contract, or it has to add enough that it makes the loss less than what it would be if the Mountain West made no moves. Maybe this is where Boise State's relative stature helps, BTW... but I doubt it. There's no guarantee that Fresno helps.

This is a FINANCIAL CALCULATION... and not a simple one. If Texas Christian has roving eyes right now, that matters, and factors into the equation. San Diego State's not LIKELY to move... but there is concern about the future of their football program. Stay tuned.


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