They only would need to do something if it was possible that they would lose their automatic BCS bid.
These schools don't demonstrate that they would prevent the BE from losing their BCS bid. Marshall and USM maybe, but the others havent't proven they are consistent winners
The MAC & Sun Belt each have members who struggle with 1A. They'll take anybody, including a former Big East team.
Okay, take out MAC and Sun Belt and just say CUSA, or for that matter, throw in the WAC and MWC teams. I included all three of those leagues as they are the teams that are located the closest to the BE that are currently 1-A, and I was making reference to all theoretical possibilities. The CUSA is the main source, but, even then lack serious schools that could help improve the BE BCS chances (Only Marshall and USM are proven and consistent winners).
It still lacks practicality. Some of these CUSA teams are showing they are struggling somewhat with Div. 1A reqyuirements. Namely UAB. UCF's attendance isn't spectacular.
Realistically, there wouldn't be that many teams out there that would take such a risk. Actually none. The ones in the MWC would simply just stay and work on the MWC's chances of being a BCS conference.
The BCS has opened the opportunity of getting to the BCS by demonstrating that non-auto bids may be more accessible for the BCS coalition teams. That maybe enough for schools to not want to take this kind of risk. Now if the BE would offer all-sports memberships, then they might possibly join, especially if its closer to the current BE teams.
...but schools often are in more than one conference.
Yes, but these schools already have all-sports memberships, except Temple, Army, Navy, and Norte Dame. The BE can't offer all sports memberships to any school, because they are maxed out at 16 teams. The only realistic football-only schools are Temple, Army, and Navy, and theoretically Norte Dame. Until the BE-16 breaks up, the BE is not going to be able to offer all-sports memberships, and teams are not going to willing to orphan out their other sports or risk having that be a possibility for such a move. I don't think a chance to improve one's BCS chances in a conference that would be crowding itself even more, would be worth taking such a risk for any school. If the school couldn't find a spot for their other sports, as they would most definitely be kicked out of their present league (CUSA, MWC, MAC, or whomever), would not want them, there is no chance that any school would even consider this. There are hardly any place where the other sports could go. We've already talked about this extensively.
Temple, Army, Navy, and Norte Dame are the pool of teams among 1-A to choose from for football-only BE membership offers. ND is already a BE member, so they would become an allsports member if they did, but it is not realistic that they would join for football.
What if the BE auditioned one or two at a time? Or, to broaden the scope, can any conference audition a school?
Again, same problem with orphaning-out other sports as discussed above. There's no place for their other sports to go, when they get kicked out or leave their present conference. There is no incentive for a team to become independent in other sports. Independent status has no practicality in college sports today. Only if you are ND, Army, Navy does it make sense, and thats only in football, as they are in a conference already. All other sports, and even college football outside of these 3 teams, rely on conference affiliation.
This lacks practicality simply for the reason there is no where for the football-only member's other sports to go. Until the BE can offer all-sports memberships, the only teams they have to choose from are Temple, Army, Navy, and Norte Dame, and current Div. 1-AA teams that play in other non-1-A football conferences for their other sports (A-10, Patriot, etc).
The BE needs to simply concentrate on being successful with their presnt 8 teams. The only members that could join for football-only are Temple, Army, and Navy, or ND joins in for football too. There's is no room for any type of an expansion, whether it be the audition kind or the permanent kind until the BE breaks up. The BE is going to make every effort for the BE-16 to be a success in other sports, just as they are going to make every effort that the BE-8 fball conference is a success.