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PostPosted: Wed Jan 12, 2005 1:37 pm 
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Lash, thanks for the thorough analysis of Big East options. You make an excellent point about the need to bring in programs that can meet BE attendance requirements. I remain a believer in the need & likelihood of a BE split, but a skeptic regarding the viability of most of these programs. IMHO, the BE should not jump to quickly when the time comes. They need to move judicioously & consolidate their gains before they move again or else they will water down their product. It must be their hope that when the time for expansion comes, at least a couple of the bottom 4 have upgraded the performance of their programs. UConn appears to be headed in this direction, but Rutgers, Cincy, & USF have to step it up as well.


Last edited by friarfan on Wed Jan 12, 2005 8:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 12, 2005 3:02 pm 
Looking at the pattern of the BE over the years, this does not appear to be a conference that makes decisions quickly or on impulse. In the past, they have been less than proactive, which was a factor, not the complete reason, for their vulnerability when it came to the ACC raid upon them. Whether it is the style of their commissioner and college Presidents, the diversity of sports emphasis among the schools, or their unique history, or a combination of several things, it is evident the conference has not projected a unified and assertive image as to its long term future. While obviously they would have a planning dimension, via committees and so forth, complete clarity falls on the side of a short term perspective. In reality, there may be more substance.
If there is a spilt, one may see more boldness. Splitting in itself would be an act of boldness or the peak of frustration.
Lash, your suggestions are "reaching" initiatives, that indeed may have merit. My question is if the BE/NBE is up to being more wheeling-dealing, aggressive, and possess a fervent desire to keep up with, or even surpass their peers?
Surely, the BE powers are more savvy and intelligent to recognize their future hinges beyond just hoping a shrewd and stubborn Notre Dame offers them something more.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 12, 2005 3:46 pm 
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Thanks, FriarFan. I had indeed meant to list Canisius but was not clear on the profiles of Detroit, Creighton or the western schools.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2005 8:09 am 
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Hi, Westwolf -

I included some of my sentimental favorites because they were home to some of the great stories & characters in college basketball history.

University of Detroit - Spencer Haywood spent his one year of college basketball here before leading us to a gold medal in the '68 Olympics before a checkered & underachieving pro career, which nonetheless had its moments. Detroit was also the one stint in college basketball coaching for thingy Vitale, one of the great characters in college hoops history.

Creighton University - This Jesuit school on the Prairie has made its way in the Missouri Valley conference unlike other big city Catholic schools who bond with their own. Paul Silas, one of my all-time favories, was an All-American here in the '60s & led the nation in rebounding. The epitome of a lunch pail type player & classy gentlemen, Silas went onto a long & successful NBA career, culminating in 2 NBA championships with the Celtics. Creighton was also home to one of the great 2-way college athletes when that was still done, Bob Gibson. Better known for his baseball Hall of Fame career, Gibson was also a basketball star at Creighton in the '50s.

St. Franis College - tucked away in the little Western Pennsylvania town of Loretto, gave us the great Maurice Stokes, one of the most inspiring stories in sports history. After being paralyzed in a freak accident during an NBA game in 1958, Stokes became the ward of teammate Jack Twyman who raised funds to pay Maurice's medical bills & was his legal guardian until Stokes died in 1970. The caring of Twyman at a time when NBA players were not multi-millionaires & the bond between this black man & white man at the height of the Civil Rights movement & racial tensions in America was a model of how friendship & charity knows no color barrier.

Marist College - Poughkeepsie, New York became the tranisition to America for 7-4 Rik Smits, "The Flying Dutchman," who went onto fame with some great Indianapolis Pacers teams.

There is no need for sentimentality with the following. They had some of the great teams in college basketball history in their day:

University of San Francisco - one of the most dominant teams in college basketball from 1948 - 1957, when they won an Nit - at the time, bigger than the NCAA - & then went on to 3 straight Final Four appearance & back-to-back NCAA championships (Bill Russell, KC Jones, etc.). Also had one of the great football teams in college football history in the early '50s, but that's a story for another time.

Seattle University - Elgin Baylor took them to the Final Four in the late '50s. Baylor was another of my personal favorites. When I was learning to play basketball, I tried to copy his moves to the basket, including the head tick.

Dayton University - I enjoyed seeing the Dayton Flyers in back-to-back NIT finals when I was in high school in the early '60s, led by 6-10 Bill Chmielewski, who never did anything in the NBA but who was a bruiser in college. A few years later, Donnie May took them to the Final Four.

Gonzaga University - gave us John Stockton & some of the great David vs Goliath stories of recent NCAA tournaments. A real treat for anyone who likes to root for the underdog. Although not a sports related, Gonzaga was also the Alma Mater of Bing Crosby. Although Bing is best remembered for "White Christmas" & his "road movies" with Bob Hope in the '40s - precursors of today's "buddy" flicks, it is long since forgotten that he was the biggest singing star in the world in the mid- to late-1920s. He is credited with changing pop singing forever because he was the first singer who knew how to modify his delivery for the microphone at a time when singers were trained to project their voices to the back of the concert hall. In contrast, Bing's style was smooth, nice & easy. Little known is the fact that Bing was a proponent for the legalization of marijuana until the day he died. While this may seem strange for a guy who was an icon from times before the rebelious '60s, consider this: when Bing went to college & emerged into the adult world, marijuana was legal & alcohol was not! Marijuana was not banned until 5 years after the end of Prohibition - one of the strangest actions in legislative history when you consider that it came so quickly on the heels of abandoning Prohibition because it was considered unenforcable.

Cheers!


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2005 1:20 pm 
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Friarfan/West Wolf/DogsNC@cks, good conversation and some more thoughts.

We can all play "monday mourning quarterback with Big East past expansion" however the conference has survived and actually remained one of the top six athletic conference. Taking Miami over Penn State proved to be a bad decision. Taking Notre Dame without football committment was also a big mistake. Both decisions were made prior to BCS.

Regardless a split is inevitable due to lots of factors.

Basketball with 16 members is going to be rugged. The USA Today reported this week that basketball coaches will really begin to fill the heat if not in the upper tier and staying in that tier will be difficult to say the least. If football were not the issue, 16 members for a basketball league is too many.

Notre Dame is the breaking point and will join the Big 10 by choice or be forced to join the Big 10 when the football schools bolt. This starts the next series of movements. Pac 10 will expand to 12 once the Big 10 goes in that direction.

Interesting enough the coaches are starting to complain about the proposed 12th regular season game and a conference championship game. Well guess what, you cant have a 12 team conference without a championship football game. Too late to shut the gate as the horse is already out. Money will drive the decision to allow the 12th regular season game. -so-

The likely scenerio is 7 BCS conferences with 12 members each. The consideration to drop 1A and 1AA status and combine into one division will drive the 6 BCS conferences into tighter controls of major football by using BCS system. Adding to the complaining group will be Atlantic 10 or Big Sky wanting a BCS bid?

Per Gunnerfan comments on another thread, it may sound harsh, however, there has to be some conferences squashed to allow the others to survive. If Big East expanded to 12, Conf USA would no longer be able to challenge any of the the BCS conferences. Expansion of the Pac 10 to 12 and reconfigured MWC with 12 would do the same for the western tier of schools.

The BCS would be a little more simple without a playoff. Each conference would have championship game and narrow the title game down to these 7 championship winners. There would be 3 at large for any non BCS conference that produced a Utah of this year. This would be rare if not impossible with the above expansions. The current BCS conferences would continue to receive two at large bids and possible a third due to limited competation after the expansion to 7 12 team conferences.

This is why my projection has the Big East expanding to 12 members as each BCS conference will need to be balanced.

If the Div 1AA and 1A status are dropped, an interesting situation occurs in the Big East with Villanova. All Villanova would need to play Big East football is figure out how to reach the Big East attendance average of 25,000.

Taking East Carolina, Southern Miss, and Memphis would then become an interesting alignment for a future Big East 12 conference.

I am not sure of which four teams would eventually join, however, future looks very much like a 12 team scenerio.

North: Syracuse, UConn, Rutgers, Pitt, Villanova, WVU

South: Louisville, Cincinnati, Memphis, E Carolina, Southern Miss, South Florida



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PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2005 2:42 pm 
Lash, interesting; it is one possible scenario, supposedly--treating as a "what if" sort of thing--
C-USA could still survive, replace a departed Southern Miss, Memphis, and East Carolina with LA Tech, North Texas, and perhaps Arkansas State. Heck, C-USA would look even more cohesive, a burnner for the SunBelt though--but the SunBelt is basically an upstart or feeder conference anyway, much like C-USA has been, but moreso. Surely C-USA does not want that role.

As far as the north division, somebody else may have to replace Villanova. There are others, maybe--Central Fla, Temple (again), Navy?


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2005 5:12 pm 
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DogsNthingys, Conf USA may survive, however, losing Louisville and for that matter Cincinnati was a blow, losing Memphis and Southern Miss would put the conference on par with the Sun Belt. Dont really think anyone is concerned a Sun Belt team will reach the BCS anytime soon.

If the six BCS conference are smart, they will help promote the expansion of each BCS conference to 12 and pretty much kill any future competition for BCS at large bids.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2005 5:27 pm 
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DogsNC@cks, please see previous post and one more point. My theory of 7 12 team BCS conferences to distinguish the major division of college football would most likely see the Pac 10 taking two teams and the MWC needing to expand. Any top performing team in the west division of Conf USA would be a prime target of the MWC to reach 12.

I think its the only way for college football to finally get a grip on which division teams belong. My vote is for 7 12 team BCS conferences and be done with it. Besides it would finally be something positive to happen for the BCS for a change.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2005 9:05 pm 
Lash,
Taking your scenario, 7 twelve team conferences presents 84 BCS teams. Counting the current transition teams, there are 119 1-A teams. Also, it is understood, the NCAA may just allow one division A, but keep playoffs for those at 63 scholarships or so.
Assuming, hypothetically, the PAC 10 expands with 2 teams, say Utah and BYU, and reaches twelve.
Asumming the Big10 adds one, say Notre Dame, and reaches 12.
Assumming, using your proposal, the Big East expands with the BE eight plus Sou. Miss, Memphis, Marshall, and East Carolina (I realize you had 'Nova, but will use Marshall here since they get frequent mention and are established).
The ACC, SEC, and Big 12 remain the same.
The traditional BCS 6 would now offer up 72 teams. With these moves, 12 more teams will be needed for the 7th conference. The MWC lost two (now at 7), C-USA having lost four to the BE will now be at 8. The SunBelt, with the two transitionals, remain at 8, the MAC remains untouched, remaining at 12, and the WAC was untouched, remaining at 9 assuming SJSU stays.
So, who are the candidates for the additional (7th) BCS conference? The two who were previously argueably the strongest, C-USA and the MWC, dropped in members, neither having twelve in the first place.
The competition would be on for the 7th conference spot among the following:
(a) The seven teams from the MWC consolidate with 3/4 of the current WAC. That offers up New Mexico, San Diego State, Wyoming, CSU, Air Force, TCU, and UNLV who consolidate with Boise State, Fresno State, Nevada, Hawaii, and Utah State. (Hypothetically, say LA Tech, NMSU, and SJSU are the ones left out)
(b) C-USA's remaining eight: UAB, UCF, Tulane, SMU, Tulsa, Rice, Houston, and UTEP, expand with LA Tech, North Texas, NMSU, and Arkansas State.
(c) The MAC says they want a part of this. They will still be 12, but three: Akron, Buffalo, and Eastern Michigan don't meet the critieria; but, the MAC replaces them with Army, Navy, and Temple.
(d) That leaves the SunBelt: They can't get 12, with only LA-L, LA-M, MTSU, FAU, FIU, and Troy remaining. They will seek to find some more southern upgrades currently at 1-AA.
Therefore, the SunBelt could be ruled out as the 7th BCS conference. The MAC, keeping 12, could argue that Northern Illinois, BGSU, Miami of Ohio, and Toledo are pretty good teams, and can compete.
The strongest arguements would be between C-USA (revised) and the consolidated and revised MWC/WAC.
The result:
(a) The arguement as to who would be the strongest 7th conference would be more profound.
(b) Both the revised C-USA and MWC/WAC would have teams that could compete at the midlevel of the NBE and one or two others.
(c) Colleges and Universities change. Anything permanent amounts to exclusion and almost anti-trust like. Suppose, for example, Northern Illinois or Louisiana-L emerge over time to become far more deserving of access compared to BYU, TCU, or Rutgers.
(d) Even by demographics or politics or another reason or motive, the composition of even the BCS conferences could further change.
(e) Suppose Montana, GA Southern, UMass, WKU, or Southern Ill., want to go big time? Theoretically, a reasonable avenue needs to be available.
Fundamentally, the BCS needs revamped, and "left outs" need more than just one spot to vie for along with major conference runner-up's unless major conferences are still limited to one BCS spot each based on championship games. If the remaining current I-A teams are competing for one spot among 36 others, while BCS schools are at one in twelve for the competition, this design is inheriently unfair, and worst than the current system. There is less flexibility, and less opportunity to recognize characteristic changes among the mass of universities. If the 1-A and 1-AA distinction is removed, which appears very possible, then the 36 or so number will grow, or even more schools may be regulated in the category for the 16 playoff group (or fall somewhere inbetween?). For some, though, that would not be a bad idea; they would need to drop their scholarship counts. These ranks would swell and post-season opportunities would become even more acute.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2005 11:26 am 
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DogsNC@cks, since this is a Big East thread will start a new BCS thread with idea of 7 BCS conferences with 12 teams to create the Super Division one. Input can then be provided on teams for each conference.


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