I guess the question is "Why ?"
Why is a TV network willing to pay big bucks for BE football ?
Note that Football-only members Boise State and SDSU would seem to only merit a share of the BE's Football TV contract.
If you are a TV network exec., you must be cognizant that you can no longer play up the conference champion automatically qualifying for the BCS.
Let me qualify that - I suspect the BE champion will go to one of the 6 New Year's Day games, but hardly to one of the 2 NCS Semi-Final games.
So the BE Football conference will be "just another FBS conference in the future".
The level of competition is rather "mid-major".
Former CUSA: Cincy, Louisville, Memphis, UCF, USC, SMU, Houston
Former MWC: Boise St., SDSU
Fermer FBS independent: Rutgers, Temple, Navy
Former 1-AA: UConn.
How does this merit the big TV dollars ? This group pales in comparison to the upper half of ACC, SEC, B1G, Big XII, and PAC12.
Once Boise St. and SDSU are presented with the numbers, MWC and CUSA need to produce the numbers for
the new CUSA + MWC (based on Boise St. and SDSU remaining in the MWC).
Will they be that dramatically different ? Will Boise and SDSU pack their sttadiums to see Temple, Memphis, CIncy ??
Perhps, but there's no rivalry there.....
I may be wrong, however, just do not see the Big East getting more than 5 million dollars per school on football shares per year based on the comments from Memphis AD on potential revenue per school the Big East may get in the new TV contract.
The Big East has always been the only BCS league to generate more revenue from basketball compared with football. It just the opposite situation in the other five BCS leagues where football generates far more revenue.
I do not see how adding SMU, Houston, Temple, UCF, and Memphis have created any more interest to TV viewers for Big East football. I tend to think the Big East as usual is using basketball to help assist with football revenue in the latest negotiations.
Less say the Big East football contract comes in at around 5 million per school based on an estimated 11 million per all sports school share. If you factor in travel for Boise State and SDSU football, there is going to be more cost associated with travel to the east coast compared to travel around the west.
If you bundle basketball and football into a modified MWC TV contract of 12 schools, the MWC may come close to what any school could get by joining another league as football only member. The MWC has to be undervalued the same as any other league in today’s modified TV figures.
I would not rule out ESPN paying the MWC for a new contract to sabotage the Big East plans especially if the Big East is not willing to go with ESPN and jumps to NBC.
If Boise State and SDSU make the same revenue in an sports conference compared to the issues of hybrid of having football in one league and all other sports in another, they would be foolish to go with the Big East.
Both of these schools need to talk with formal Big East schools on issues of having sports in multiple leagues and see how they like it and what kind of problems occurred with this type of conference alignments.
Again if I were Boise State and SDSU, would do my home work before jumping into a league that no longer has the original benefit and security of AQ BCS status.
It still comes down to money. I would love to see SDSU and BSU back in the MWC. But even without the BE AQ, there is still a lot of money to be made. The Big East essentially went out and took the top market schools (and some of the better performers) from CUSA. Just in time for their TV negotiations. They now get to show the networks that they have the Big East brand in NY/NJ, Philly, DC, Orlando, Tampa, Memphis, Houston, Dallas, Cincinnati, Louisville, Hartford. Throw in state penetration like UConn does (beyond Hartford). A national brand like Boise St. is a huge help and SDSU will give the conference a west coast presence they have never had.
The Big East TV contract is expected to be anywhere between 5 and 10 times the MWC, with or without the CUSA alliance. So even without the AQ, it still might be a ton of money that SDSU and BSU would have to leave behind.
FSA, with your Duke comparison. Yes, it would under a balanced comparison. If Duke was available for FB only, the Sun Belt, another FBs conference would likely take them for FB only for the brand alone. As for the Summit, if they need members...their numbers are a bit low, and if Denver made the move, wouldn't you think adding a known D1 school like Boise St. would be more valuable than a D2 upgrade? If you get to chose from a known D1 school with lots of national attention for it's FBS football program, or a D2 upgrade, I think you go for the brand you know. We have precedent: Notre Dame joined the Big East, a conference that's footprint extended only from Boston to Washington DC. It's not like South Bend was a close bus trip away, something the Big East was at the time (a bus league). But the Notre Dame brand, without football, was welcomed. Boise St. might not offer as much as Notre Dame...but Notre Dame was joining the best basketball league. The Summit is a lower level D1 basketball conference...lower than the WAC that Boise St. represented in the NCAA tourney just a couple years ago. My point is just that Boise St. will have options. They can try the Big Sky, willing to accept lower revenue for basketball if the BS changes their membership rules to permit them. They can try th Big West again with the same offer. And then there is the Summit...where even if they aren't welcomed as equal members, they can still offer a lower revenue split in return for a conference home.