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PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2006 8:40 pm 
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Depending on whom you listen to, either the Big East rejected a Penn State application in 1982, or BC & Syracuse rejected overtures from PSU to leave the Big East & join them in forming an all-sports conference. Regardless of rumors, what actually happened is that the Big East invited Pitt to join, thereby adding a third I-A football program to join the 6 basketball/non I-A schools. Within a decade, Miami had joined the conference, affiliate members were added for football only, some of whom eventually became full members, & Notre Dame joined for everything except football.

What if BC & Syracuse had done the right thing & had left the BE to form an Eastern all-sports conference? What would it have looked like? Here is a list of Northeastern schools that were playing I-A football in 1982 with varying degrees of success:

Army
Boston College
Navy
Penn State
Pitt
Rutgers
Syracuse
Temple
West Virginia

If this Eastern "super-conference" had been formed with all of the above members, consider the following questions:

1. How would this group compare today vs the current Big East line-up

2. How would this group measure up as a basketball conference?

3. Let's assume that Miami had eventually joined, how would that have changed the conference's profile?

4. With 10 members, would this group have added Virginia Tech to go to 11? If not, would Tech ever have achieved the success they eventually did?

5. Would Penn State eventually have left to go to the Big Ten anyway? If they did, how does the group now look? And how would it look if Virginia Tech had replaced Penn State as the 10th member?

6. Would BC & Miami have eventually left to join the the ACC anyway?

7. If Virginai Tech had never been invited, would the ACC have been interested in them & would the Virginia politicians ever have had a case to make? If not, would Syracuse have left for the ACC instead?

8. If they had left the Big East to join Penn State in this all-sports conference, would Syracuse ever have developed a national championship caliber program in basketball?

9. Would UConn ever have upgraded to I-A? If so, would they have left the Big East to join this group?

10. Would Maryland have left the ACC to join when the group included Penn State?

I find this subject fascinating because it seems to raise more questions than it answers.

I don't think that it would have made any sense for Penn State to join the big East in 1982. It was a bad fit from the start & would not have solved Penn State's problems nor would it have done much for Eastern football. However, a good case can be made that it would have made sense for BC & Syracuse to have left the Big East for the proposed all-sports conference.

Would Eastern football be better off today?


Last edited by friarfan on Sat Jun 10, 2006 8:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2006 9:26 pm 
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Depending on the date and how far back one may go, there was also that old Metro bb league with fb independents of the time period. Georgia Tech, Florida State, and South Carolina were also independent in addition to VPI and Miami. GT did not hook up with the ACC until the '83 season. Then, I doubt there was an interest or even a serious thought ever emerged to have another "north-south atlantic" conference. What if?

Penn State
W. Virginia
Va Tech
Boston College
Syracuse
Rutgers
Pittsburgh
South Carolina
Florida State
Miami
Georgia Tech
Temple and/or later UConn

Umhhh? A 12 teamer, and would have been the ACC's worst nightmare! ;D


Last edited by sec03 on Sat Jun 10, 2006 9:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2006 11:16 pm 
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Yikes with the Metro schools looks at the divisions:

North
Boston College
Pittsburgh
Penn State
Rutgers
Syracuse
Temple

South
Florida State
Georgia Tech
Miami
South Carolina
Virginia Tech
West Virginia

That could have been a dominating football league. Still though if the Big Ten or SEC offered memberships, I'm sure some would still jumped ship.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2006 7:12 pm 
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Here are one man's (Dan's) opinions on the questions posed above. Feel free to tear me to shreds.

1. How would this group compare today vs the current Big East line-up

I think that this (1982) group would be stronger because of the Nittany Lions and BC Eagles.

2. How would this group measure up as a basketball conference?

Mediocre. With no Louisville, Cincy, Providence, etc., the league would be counting on Pitt and Syracuse as standard bearers. WVU would have won the regular season last year but hoops would not be this league's forte.


3. Let's assume that Miami had eventually joined, how would that have changed the conference's profile?

If Miami would have joined, it would have further strengthened football and diminished basketball.

4. With 10 members, would this group have added Virginia Tech to go to 11? If not, would Tech ever have achieved the success they eventually did?

My guess is that VT would not have fit in to this league's plans.

5. Would Penn State eventually have left to go to the Big Ten anyway? If they did, how does the group now look? And how would it look if Virginia Tech had replaced Penn State as the 10th member?

As much as my alma mater loves to trumpet the academics of the Big Ten, if this league was formed, PSU would not have moved from the east.

6. Would BC & Miami have eventually left to join the the ACC anyway?

BC would have stayed. For Miami, it is tough to say. The 10 team Eastern League could have been a good fit for all involved.

7. If Virginai Tech had never been invited, would the ACC have been interested in them & would the Virginia politicians ever have had a case to make? If not, would Syracuse have left for the ACC instead?

If in our alternate universe the push was still there for 12 teams, then VT would have been a good candidate. Again, I think that PSU would keep Syracuse in this Eastern League.

8. If they had left the Big East to join Penn State in this all-sports conference, would Syracuse ever have developed a national championship caliber program in basketball?

I think so. I think that Syracuse could have been the one team to compete in both sports.

9. Would UConn ever have upgraded to I-A? If so, would they have left the Big East to join this group?

This would depend on if there was a push for 12 team conferences. Also, they may have served as a replacement for Temple anyway--just like in real life.

10. Would Maryland have left the ACC to join when the group included Penn State?

I don't think so. Although, it is fun to think of this conference sniping Maryland as their 12th team (assuming UConn would have come on as #11).

DIVISIONS: EAST: BC UCONN TEMPLE RUTGERS MIAMI SYRACUSE
WEST: PITT PSU WVU MARYLAND ARMY NAVY

Now that I look at it, I think that I would rather have Va Tech, Louisville and Cincy instead of the 2 academies and Temple.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:10 am 
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Friar,

This is an interesting question. I posted such a similar question in another thread with other hypothetical questions too:

Yeah.. there are many different scenerios that you could come up with if certain expansions or scenerios did or didn't happen.

1) PSU to BE and BE becomes all sports
2) FSU to SEC when SEC considered expansion in 1990
3) Colorado and Texas to Pac10
4) Texas and PSU to Big10
5) Texas and TA&M to SEC
6) Miami and FSU to ACC
7) WAC-16 stays together
8) ND joins Big10 with PSU
9) SU instead of VT to ACC in 2003

EDIT:
10) PSU is rejected by the Big10 and joins the ACC


Last edited by panthersc97 on Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 3:43 am 
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Interesting post Friar. I guess I think that if PSU joined got everyone in the NE to form an all sports conference, the BE would have solidified the NE as a conference. This would most likely have locked in the ACC to be a southern conference. In addition, the BE would have been in a position to raid the ACC.


Quote:

If this Eastern "super-conference" had been formed with all of the above members, consider the following questions:

1. How would this group compare today vs the current Big East line-up


It probably would have been similar. I think you might have been able to get Cinn and UL to be added to the BE. The following teams would be there:

PSU, Pitt, SU, BC, WVu, RU, Temple, Maryland, UC, UL
Maybe Army and Navy


Quote:

2. How would this group measure up as a basketball conference?


With UC and UL in the conference with SU still there - the BE still does pretty well. I don't know if the BE BB schools would have continued on the same path because now you have a NE conference for all sports.


Quote:

3. Let's assume that Miami had eventually joined, how would that have changed the conference's profile?

Yes. The conference has an outlier and will now need to add someone to partner with Miami - FSU or GaTech??? I don't know if GaTech would have moved.

In the early 90s maybe the BE adds FSU first and Miami. Or perhaps they add ECU and UVa. Remember, ECU was a media darling like VT back in those days.

I think that if a NE conference would have formed that Miami may have been in the SEC or ACC instead of the BE though.


Quote:

4. With 10 members, would this group have added Virginia Tech to go to 11? If not, would Tech ever have achieved the success they eventually did?

Would have been interesting to see if the All sports BE went after VT or UL for be added (maybe Army and Navy drop out at some point because of competitiveness)?


Quote:


5. Would Penn State eventually have left to go to the Big Ten anyway? If they did, how does the group now look? And how would it look if Virginia Tech had replaced Penn State as the 10th member?


That is the most intersting question. IMO, the BE would have still been a one horse race most years with PSU being the top team. PSU was the largest school with the largest stadium and therefore could spend the most resources on FB. In the era of superconferences (which PSU started by moving to the Big10), you now need two teams not just one.

IMO, without PSU - the most popular team in the NE (outside of ND) not in the conference, the conference becomes suseptible to a raid by the ACC again. PSU would have been able to anchor the BE - as long as they are part of the BE.


Quote:


6. Would BC & Miami have eventually left to join the the ACC anyway?


Without PSU but with Maryland? That's another interesting question. Without PSU or Maryland - YES.


Quote:

7. If Virginai Tech had never been invited, would the ACC have been interested in them & would the Virginia politicians ever have had a case to make? If not, would Syracuse have left for the ACC instead?

I'm not even sure VT would have risen like they did. IF no PSU and Maryland in the all sports BE then SU is chosen.


Quote:

8. If they had left the Big East to join Penn State in this all-sports conference, would Syracuse ever have developed a national championship caliber program in basketball?


I haven't followed basketball that closely to say one way or another. What about you Friar? Do you think the BE BB schools would have been as good?


Quote:

9. Would UConn ever have upgraded to I-A? If so, would they have left the Big East to join this group?


I think a BE conference would have listened to UConn asking about membership if they upgraded. The question is would UConn have WANTED to upgrade. Would the BB schools (Prov, Villanova, GT, etc) been as good?


Quote:

10. Would Maryland have left the ACC to join when the group included Penn State?

Yes. I think that would have been a condition on PSU joining. Maryland had some history with PSU, SU, and WVu.


Quote:

I find this subject fascinating because it seems to raise more questions than it answers.

Agreed.

Another hypothetical question is that would ND have joined the BE? It would have had a mixture of privates and publics and been centered around the NE where most of their alumni are located (amongst other things).

Also, would PSU left instead of going to the Big10 - what about the ACC? JoePa said if the Big10 turned down PSU they would have applied to admission in the ACC. Does then FSU and PSU get in making 10? Then you add BC and SU to goto 12. You would have a nice N/S divisions:

North: BC, SU, PSU, Maryland, UVa, Wake
South: UNC, NCSt, Duke, Clemson, GT, FSU


Quote:

I don't think that it would have made any sense for Penn State to join the big East in 1982. It was a bad fit from the start & would not have solved Penn State's problems nor would it have done much for Eastern football. However, a good case can be made that it would have made sense for BC & Syracuse to have left the Big East for the proposed all-sports conference.

Would Eastern football be better off today?


I agree - In 1982 - PSU would have been a bad fit for the primarily BB-only conference. BC and SU to an all sports BE would have made sense.

Would Eastern FB been better? I guess that really depends on what happened with PSU - would they have stayed? Again, I am a firm believer that for an all sports conference in the NE to be considered a 'player' and stable, they needed PSU - the largest and most popular team in the region. I guess I would compare it to Texas and Texas A&M leaving the SWC.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 8:31 am 
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Quote:
Depending on whom you listen to, either the Big East rejected a Penn State application in 1982, or BC & Syracuse rejected overtures from PSU to leave the Big East & join them in forming an all-sports conference. Regardless of rumors, what actually happened is that the Big East invited Pitt to join, thereby adding a third I-A football program to join the 6 basketball/non I-A schools. Within a decade, Miami had joined the conference, affiliate members were added for football only, some of whom eventually became full members, & Notre Dame joined for everything except football.

What if BC & Syracuse had done the right thing & had left the BE to form an Eastern all-sports conference? What would it have looked like? Here is a list of Northeastern schools that were playing I-A football in 1982 with varying degrees of success:

Army
Boston College
Navy
Penn State
Pitt
Rutgers
Syracuse
Temple
West Virginia

If this Eastern "super-conference" had been formed with all of the above members, consider the following questions:

1. How would this group compare today vs the current Big East line-up

2. How would this group measure up as a basketball conference?

3. Let's assume that Miami had eventually joined, how would that have changed the conference's profile?

4. With 10 members, would this group have added Virginia Tech to go to 11? If not, would Tech ever have achieved the success they eventually did?

5. Would Penn State eventually have left to go to the Big Ten anyway? If they did, how does the group now look? And how would it look if Virginia Tech had replaced Penn State as the 10th member?

6. Would BC & Miami have eventually left to join the the ACC anyway?

7. If Virginia Tech had never been invited, would the ACC have been interested in them & would the Virginia politicians ever have had a case to make? If not, would Syracuse have left for the ACC instead?

8. If they had left the Big East to join Penn State in this all-sports conference, would Syracuse ever have developed a national championship caliber program in basketball?

9. Would UConn ever have upgraded to I-A? If so, would they have left the Big East to join this group?

10. Would Maryland have left the ACC to join when the group included Penn State?

I find this subject fascinating because it seems to raise more questions than it answers.

I don't think that it would have made any sense for Penn State to join the big East in 1982. It was a bad fit from the start & would not have solved Penn State's problems nor would it have done much for Eastern football. However, a good case can be made that it would have made sense for BC & Syracuse to have left the Big East for the proposed all-sports conference.

Would Eastern football be better off today?


Here are some random thoughts on my post. Honestly, I found it very difficult to answer these questions in any sensible way, so I won't even attempt some of them.

1. To me the key point is that Penn State would in all likelihood would have left for the Big Ten anyway. The key to this decision would have been Bryce Jordan, president of PSU 1983-90. He arrived right after Joe Pa had engaged in these conversations with BC & Syracuse. Had Joe Pa been successful in onvincing BC & SU to join him in an all-sports conference, PSU would have been the leader of this new group, which would have been in its formative stages when Jordan arrived & still a couple of years away from full conference schuduling in all likelihood. Jordan would have had to give lip service to the new conference because of PSU's key role in the conference. However, he was not an Eastern guy & would have had no real allegiance to the group. From all I can read of his comments, he felt right from the outset of his presidency that PSU was a bad fit with the Eastern schools with whom they had traditionally competed in athletics PSU is large (very large), academically elite, & a recipient of major research dollars. I think that Jordan saw them as much more like Ohio State, Michigan, Illinois, & Wisconsin than like West Virginia, Syracuse, Boston College, & Pitt. And certainly not at all like Temple or the service academies. Only Rutgers is similar to PSU & they really haven't been able to compete with them athletically.

Jordan was the key decision maker in PSU's athletic future, not Joe Pa & not anyone else. I think that they would have gone where he wanted to take them. He wanted to take them to the Big Ten & the interest was obviously interested.

2. The other key to the East's football future for me is UConn. Maybe I'm biased because I live in Connecticut & attend UConn games. However, I think that UConn is critical to the future of Eastern football because they are a state flagship in a wealthy state & have the full support of the legislature, the fans, & the business community.

Despite the fact that I live in CT, I can't tell you how this one would have gone if UConn had remained in the basketball-only Big East if BC & SU had left to join PSU for something else. I woould think that they would not have upgraded to I-A simply because the BE invitation would not have been there for them & it's hard to sell legislators on the financial commitment for a new stadium unless it's a sure thing. Not impossible because it's been done elsewhere, but difficult. UConn has always lived in the shadow of Yale & has only emerged from that in the past 15 years as a result of the success of both its men's & women's basketball programs. The timing was right in the late '90s because of the BE invitation & because it was part of a larger plan for campus renovation called "&Conn 2000."

The only factor that may have led UConn to the all-sports conference even without the ready-made slot that the BE reserved for it was the leadership of AD Lew Perkins, now at Kansas. Perkins began lobbbying for I-A football at UConn as early as 1991. He was highly respected in the state & had a lot of influence. He was very vocal in stating that the future of UConn basketball, the darling of the fans at the time, was dependent on football, that football would control the future of all college sports. He was obviously successful in his mission because UConn is now there, with even more success than it had at I-AA, & its athletic future is secure.

I really don't know if Perkins would have been successful without the perfect storm. The biggest problem would have been opposition from BC to UConn membership. BC has wanted to keep New England to itself for recruiting reasons.

3. Another questions that are difficult to answer is whether Miami, whom I believe would have joined, would have stayed given that they could have moved the conference in whatever direction they chose. They would not have had those problematic Catholic basketballers to deal with. It's hard to give up that kind of power. However, the other programs with the exception of Virginia Tech were far inferior to them most of the time, baseball still would have been a problem, & the geography was not right.

My guess - & it's only a wild hunch - is that Miami would have led a move to raid the ACC. There was discontent with the ACC among Clemson, Georgia Tech, & FSU. It took them some time to overcome the North Carolina political power structure of the Big 4. If Miami's timing had been right, they probably could have pried those 3 away from the ACC.

I also think that Miami would have figured a way for the league to disassociate itself from the weak sisters of the conference except for Rutgers - i.e. Temple & the service academies. I can see Miami leading a reorganization of Eastern football that would have looked like this:

Boston College
Rutgers
Syracuse
Pitt
West Virginia
Virginia Tech
Clemson
Georgia Tech
Florida State
Miami

Had this been accomplished, they obviously would have decided to make the move to 12, for which candidates would have included:

Maryland
Louisville
Cincinnati

4. So what would have happened to the ACC if the above scenario had unfolded, leaving them with only 5 or 6 members?

Might the ACC have became this?

North Carolina
NC State
Duke
Wake Forest
Virginia
Temple
UConn
UMass

This would have been a much more basketball-oriented group, built in the image of UNC & Duke. Might they have turned to USF or some others of the usual suspects? Might they have accomodated Notre Dame the way the BE has?

Of course, all of this is wild speculation

5. If a new all-sports conference had lost PSU & had stayed too long with a Northeastern identity that included Temple & the service academies, I think that they would have lost Miami, BC, & Virginia Tech to the ACC just as they did anyway. Without UConn, I think that they would have been in worse shape than they are today.

There is another factor, the Big East name. The Catholic basketball schools would have been just as successful in the '80s without BC & Syracuse. Patrick Ewing was already at Georgetown in '82, as were Chris Mullin at St. John's & Eddie Pinckney at Villanova. Pitino would have taken Providence to the Fianl four & PJ Carlesimo would have gotten Seton Hall to the Finals in '89 just as he did. It was that success that cemented the BE name recognition in college sports.

Without the BE name, would this new group have been perceived in the same way? They would not have had UConn & its NCAA bb championship when the ACC raid occurred. With Temple & the service academies, they would have had more baggage with which to label them "second rate." Would they have retained their BCS spot with this group?

Army
Rutgers
Temple
Navy
Syracuse
Pitt
West Virginia

I really don't know the answer, but I think that it would have been an even tougher road for them than it proved to be. They were marginal & just squeaked by with the reorganized BE. I don't know what tipped the balance for them this time, but might it have been different under other circumstances?


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 15, 2006 8:49 pm 
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Quote:
Yikes


Yikes indeed!

Just for fun, let's look at what could have happened if the Metro were playing football with that lineup today:

Metro (12):
North - Boston College, Pittsburgh, Penn State, Rutgers, Syracuse, Temple
South - Florida State, Georgia Tech, Miami (FL), South Carolina, VPI, WVU

Big Ten (10):
Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Indiana, Purdue,
Illinois, Northwestern, Wisconsin, Iowa, Minnesota

Sun Belt (12):
West - Arkansas State, ULM, ULL, Tulane, Southern Miss, MTSU
East - FAU, FIU, UCF, Troy, UAB, MTSU, ECU

WAC (12):
Pacific - Fresno State, Hawaii, Idaho, Utah State, SJSU, NMSU
Central - Tulsa, Rice, North Texas, SMU, Louisiana Tech, Houston

"ACC" (12)
North - Louisville, Cincinnati, Marshall, Virginia, Maryland, Connecticut
South - Duke, UNC, Wake Forest, Clemson, South Florida, Memphis

Mountain West (12):
Pacific - Boise State, BYU, Utah, San Diego State, UNLV, Nevada
Central - TCU, UTEP, Wyoming, New Mexico, Colorado State, Air Force

Pac 10 (10):
Washington, Washington State, Oregon, Oregon State,
Arizona, Arizona State, UCLA, USC, Stanford, California

Big 12 (12):
North - Nebraska, Iowa State, Missouri, Kansas, Kansas State, Colorado
South - Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Baylor, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State

SEC (12):
West - Arkansas, Ole Miss, Miss State, LSU, Alabama, AUburn
East - Kentucky, NC State, Vanderbilt, Georgia, Florida, Tennessee

I-A Independents (3):
Notre Dame, Navy, Army

MAC (12):
West - Northern Illinois, WMU, CMU, EMU, Ball State, Toledo
East - Buffalo, Ohio, Arkron, Kent State, Miami (OH), BGSU

Missouri Valley (sponsors I-AA Football under its own name):
West - Drake, Creighton, Missouri State*, Wichita State, Northern Iowa*, WIU*
East - WKU*, Evansville, Illinois State*, Indiana State*, SIU*, Bradley

Atlantic 12 (12, does not sponsor football)
East - UMass, Rhode Island, Fordham, St. Bonaventure, Vermont
West - Youngstown State, Duqesne, Dayton, St. Joseph's (PA), GWU, LaSalle

American South Conference (10, no football):
ODU, VCU, UNCC, Jacksonville, South Alabama, New Orleans, Lamar, Centenrary, ORU, UALR

Big East (12, no football):
Central - Marquette, DePaul, St. Louis, Xavier, Detroit Mercy, Notre Dame
Atlantic - Providence, St. John's, Georgetown, Seton Hall, Villanova, Richmond

Horizon League (12, does not sponsor football)
West - Denver (replaces Chicago State), UMKC, UWGB, UWM, Loyola (IL), UIC
East - Butler, Cleveland State, Oakland, IUPUI, IPFW, Valparaiso

Southland (12 - *9 for I-AA football)
East - UCA*, McNesse*, Nicholls*, Northwestern State*, Southeastern LA*, SFA*
West - SHSU*, UTSA, TSU San Marcos*, TAMU-Corpus Christi, UTA*, UTPA



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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 9:36 am 
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The old Metro did disband, but gave rise eventually to an all sports conference. It is called Conference USA.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 10:02 pm 
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Quote:

Quote:
Yikes


Yikes indeed!

Just for fun, let's look at what could have happened if the Metro were playing football with that lineup today:

Metro (12):
North - Boston College, Pittsburgh, Penn State, Rutgers, Syracuse, Temple
South - Florida State, Georgia Tech, Miami (FL), South Carolina, VPI, WVU


I like the idea of a Northeast/Metro pairing - & I like your pairings even though Miami & West Virginia were never in the Metro. Also Georgia Tech left early on in '78 & would never have been part of the thinking at the time Paterno was looking.

However, yours is a good list of programs that were available if someone had the foresight & leadership to bring them together & if they had the ccoperative spirit necessary to leave their independence behind.

Leaving West Virginia in the Northeast with its more natural rivals & taking the Metro membership in 1986 after St. Louis & Tulane had left, an Eastern/Metro merger without Temple, Army, & Navy from the North and without Southern Mississippi, a Metro member at the time, would have looked like this:

North

Boston College
Rutgers
Syracuse
Penn State
Pitt
West Virginia

South

Virginia Tech
Cincinnati
Louisville
Memphis
South Carolina
Florida State


Even with this group, however, I don't see Penn State staying once the Big Ten came knocking on their door. And I don't see it even if Miami had been part of the Southern group.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2006 10:04 pm 
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Quote:
The old Metro did disband, but gave rise eventually to an all sports conference. It is called Conference USA.


Yes, but after the Great Midwest Conference hiatus for many of its members - although not for the Cardinals.

All-sports conference? Maybe today, but then more of a hybrid like the Big East.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2006 6:50 am 
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Quote:


Here are some random thoughts on my post. Honestly, I found it very difficult to answer these questions in any sensible way, so I won't even attempt some of them.

1. To me the key point is that Penn State would in all likelihood would have left for the Big Ten anyway. The key to this decision would have been Bryce Jordan, president of PSU 1983-90. He arrived right after Joe Pa had engaged in these conversations with BC & Syracuse. Had Joe Pa been successful in onvincing BC & SU to join him in an all-sports conference, PSU would have been the leader of this new group, which would have been in its formative stages when Jordan arrived & still a couple of years away from full conference schuduling in all likelihood. Jordan would have had to give lip service to the new conference because of PSU's key role in the conference. However, he was not an Eastern guy & would have had no real allegiance to the group. From all I can read of his comments, he felt right from the outset of his presidency that PSU was a bad fit with the Eastern schools with whom they had traditionally competed in athletics PSU is large (very large), academically elite, & a recipient of major research dollars. I think that Jordan saw them as much more like Ohio State, Michigan, Illinois, & Wisconsin than like West Virginia, Syracuse, Boston College, & Pitt. And certainly not at all like Temple or the service academies. Only Rutgers is similar to PSU & they really haven't been able to compete with them athletically.

Jordan was the key decision maker in PSU's athletic future, not Joe Pa & not anyone else. I think that they would have gone where he wanted to take them. He wanted to take them to the Big Ten & the interest was obviously interested.


The real question here is whether the BE consisting of:

BC, SU, Temple, PSU, Pitt, Maryland, WVu, RU, Navy, Army have been good enough academically to have PSU stay. I agree that PSU is like Big10 schools. However, I'm just not sure whether PSU would have pushed for the Big10 as hard with the BE as constituted here.

Did the Big10 persue PSU or the other way around. I thought that PSU persued the Big10. Certainly, PSU would have upgraded academically in the BE. All the schools in the BE were good academic schools outside of Temple and WVu. PSU had to spend a lot of money in a short amount of time to get into the Big10. Would there have been the same push in a short timeframe with the BE? Probably not but PSU would still be a good academic institution today if they stayed in the BE as listed above. Also, probably not doing as much research but still high up there. Remember, Pitt is not part of the Big10 but it still middle of teh pack in research dollars when compared against other Big10 institutions.





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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2006 10:02 am 
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I agree. I think that the conversation would have taken on a whole different tone if Maryland were in the mix. So much of what goes on in life is about timing. Who knows . . . If all of this had happened 10 years earlier when Maryland experienced repeated disappointments in the ACC bb tournament with their great Tom McMillen/LenElmore teams, they may have been ripe to leave the ACC. Disillusioned & disappointed with their inability to even get to the NCAA tournament with one of the best teams in the country because of a tournament was an anomaly at the time combined with the appeal of associating their football team with Penn State, the best in the East at the time & a traditional rival, they may well have left the ACC & joined such a league. Their roots in the ACC were certainly not as deep in 1974 as they were by 1984.

Without Maryland, however, I don't see Penn State having stayed in the East. My mother had an expression about romance: "He chased her until she caught him." Yes, it may have been Penn State that was pursuing the Big Ten, but I think there was a mutual attraction there all along. On ways or another, I think Penn State was going to end up in the Big Ten.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2006 1:19 pm 
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Penn State going into the Big 10 was mutual. Ohio State wanted them as did others. Sure there were some in the Big10 that were reluctant. But most realized a good thing when they saw it.

Penn State beat Maryland 70 to 7 in 1993, the first year Penn State went into the Big 10. The long, one-sided series concluded, suggesting nothing that they would ever be together in a conference.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 18, 2006 2:43 pm 
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Quote:
Penn State going into the Big 10 was mutual. Ohio State wanted them as did others. Sure there were some in the Big10 that were reluctant. But most realized a good thing when they saw it.

Penn State beat Maryland 70 to 7 in 1993, the first year Penn State went into the Big 10. The long, one-sided series concluded, suggesting nothing that they would ever be together in a conference.


Certainly PSU going to the Big10 wasn't mutual amoung athletic directors. It's a good thing that ADs don't vote. Michigan (Bo Schembechler) didn't want PSU in the Big10. The vote was close and PSU only made it in by 1 vote I believe.

Like the BE vote in '82, this changed the landscape of college FB. PSU was part of the first restructuring in college FB in quite a long time (they were voted in in '89). JoePa himself said that if they didn't get in they would try the ACC instead of the BE.

As far as Maryland, PSU played Maryland 37 times and is 35-1-1. They played just about every year from 1960-1993. PSU hasn't played Maryland again because they wanted to rotate their non-conference schedule around since they only now had 3 OOC each year.

Maryland also has a history with SU and WVu and given its proximity to the NErn 1A schools it was a logical choice. There has been many rumors that Maryland 'would' have joined such a NE all sports conference - JoePa was rumored to say it. Although, it is difficult to find those in the 'know' to confirm this as truth - though there is enough smoke to make this plausible.



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