Good move. Logical, new state, good program. Combine that with Charlotte and UTSA and those are three great additions. Watch out for the Sun Belt in 10 years.
I say great move, especially if they grab the other two you mentioned plus UTA to balance out UALR, but if they did all that they'd need a 14th fb/16th bb member (assuming they don't get raided), these last addition have smartly been about markets now Benson needs to find his next Boise St. LA Tech would be low hanging fruit, but with their history with Benson in the WAC I think they might come over, and despite UTSA having first invite I don't think Texas St is out of it, they've had a strong program for years at FCS and are really looking the part of a future FBS powerhouse. But other than them there isn't any current FBS that's appeal, so grab the best FCS App St. This would solidify the Eastern wing of the SBC a really put some big names in the conference.
It can easily be divided depending on who joins as full members and who joins as fb onlys.
If fb onlys-
East- Charlotte/App St fb only, FIU, FAU, GA St, Troy, So Bama, MTSU (WKU in bb)
West- WKU fb, Ark St, ULM, ULL, UNT, UTSA (UALR/UTA in bb)
If all full members-
East- Charlotte, App St, FIU, FAU, GA St, Troy, So Bama, (MTSU in bb)
West- MTSU fb, WKU, Ark St, ULM, ULL, UNT, UTSA (UALR/UTA in bb)
Yup, good alignments but I think they show that there isn't a great way to draw the line between East and West, especially if UT-A is the non football school brought in. It'll be interesting to see what they do when they lose schools to the MWC-USA thing. UNT and FIU are probably out but will they bring in La Tech, NMSU, or Texas St? La Tech makes sense and it's not like they can stay in the WAC for much longer. But expanding all the way to New Mexico? It's possible but far from certain. I can't imagine Texas St getting an invite but who knows.
I think for now the alignment will look something like:
East- Charlotte, FAU, GA St, Troy, So Bama, MTSU, WKU (non football)
West- WKU, Ark St, ULM, ULL, UTSA, La Tech (UALR/UTA in bb)
If UT-A is serious about adding football then they should begin that process and look to upgrade in 5+ years. At that point, assuming no one has left, they should look to add an upgrading team in the East that has been successful. I would think they would want to get into Virginia (another new market) rather than getting another North Carolina school in App St. But if Charlotte ever leaves, App St should be invited in their place. UALR will once again be making it an odd number and I don't think the league will want to accommodate them any longer especially when their place could be used for other upgrading FCS schools.
East- Charlotte/App St, FAU, GA St, Troy, So Bama, MTSU, JMU
West- WKU, Ark St, ULM, ULL, UTSA, La Tech, UT-A
or if it's 16
East- Charlotte, App St, FAU, GA St, Troy, So Bama, JMU, Richmond (or some other FCS upgrade)
West- MTSU, WKU, Ark St, ULM, ULL, UTSA, La Tech, UT-A