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 Post subject: East Tennessee State
PostPosted: Wed Oct 15, 2003 11:40 am 
Formation of the American South Conference sounds reminiscent of the formation of the Great Midwest Conference (1991). Five of six original GMC schools left conferences which already had automatic bids to align in a more "marketable" format. UAB left the Sun Belt; Marquette and Saint Louis left the MCC (Horizon); Cincinnati and Memphis State left the Metro; DePaul was an Independent. Cincinnati, Memphis, and Saint Louis had all been in both the Missouri Valley and Metro Conferences together at some point prior to the formation, similar to how Louisiana-Lafayette was reunited with Arkansas State, Lamar, and Louisiana Tech from the Southland. New Orleans received a national ranking and NCAA berth in 1987 (Benny Dees, later at Wyoming) as an independent, and had achieved moderate success (well a title or to at least) in the Sun Belt Conference prior to leaving in the early 1980s (I have no idea why UNO left its initial membership, but I am very curious). Perhaps Texas-Pan American can be analogous to UAB, but admittedly that is probably a gross oversimplification.

Saint Louis finished as runner-up in the NIT (1989-1990) as a member of the MCC, was scheduled to be moving into a much larger arena (Kiel Center), and arguably had a greater basketball tradition (at least at the time) than the majority of other then-MCC matters (this is obviously still subject to debate).

DePaul and Marquette were long-time Midwestern independents, along with Notre Dame, and later GMC member Dayton.

UAB felt that its stature necessitated that it had "outgrown" a Sun Belt Conference that had become somewhat stagnant by the latter half of the 1980s.

Not exactly sure why Cincinnati and Memphis State left the Metro, but it is generally conceded that throughout its history the conference more or less revolved around Louisville its only continuous member (Tulane does not count as a continuous member due to the four-year shelving of its basketball program).

Good points about Lamar. I forgot about the successes of the basketball program in the late 1970s/early 1980s (e.g. Billy Tubbs), and yes football would be terminated two years into American South membership. Louisiana Tech (e.g. Andy Russo, Karl Malone) had also had moderate success and was even able to obtain an at-large bid (albeit as a #16) in either 1989 or 1990. Not clear on the basketball histories of Arkansas State, Louisiana-Lafayette, or Texas-Pan American. To clarify a point from yesterday, Louisiana-Lafayette left the Southland after being the only conference school not to be dropped from the I-A ranks in 1982. Louisiana Tech would later rejoin the I-A ranks (1989?) as would Arkansas State (1992, whatever happened to Ray Perkins?). Obviously whatever shortcomings the American South had in the way of recognition of its achievements would later be rendered moot when the conference was merged into the Sun Belt in 1991.

Ironically, enough the only remaining American South members (out of a total of seven) are Arkansas State, Louisiana-Lafayette, and New Orleans. UCF left after the first year, Lamar and Texas-Pan American after five and six years, and Louisiana Tech for the WAC for reasons relating to football.


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 Post subject: East Tennessee State
PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2003 5:46 am 
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Freshman
Freshman

Joined: Mon May 12, 2003 8:45 pm
Posts: 47
Many hardcore APP State fans would like to see APP move to IA or at least to another IAA conference that has similar aspirations to move to a higher level of football when major realignment occurs. Currrently the SOCON is moving towards a "footprint" that APP does not want to be in which appears to be a rehash of the old Carolinas Conference. I think APP would be a good fit in a true IAA system not the watered down version we have now. APP is currently conducting a major fundraising to improve their football facilities in hopes of being in a favorable position when realignment does occur.


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 Post subject: East Tennessee State
PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2003 9:31 am 
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All-Conference
All-Conference

Joined: Thu Sep 25, 2003 9:41 pm
Posts: 749
Location: Wilmington, NC
i would love for app. state to be apart of the caa. they add excellent 1-aa football and they are not that bad at basketball. plus a rivalry with uncw would be instant.


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 Post subject: East Tennessee State
PostPosted: Thu Oct 16, 2003 3:28 pm 
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Junior
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Joined: Mon Oct 13, 2003 11:35 am
Posts: 108
Location: North Carolina
The Southern Conference is too good a fit for App to really ever leave. There is nowhere to go. Appalachian State can only hope to move to the MAC if they ever do move up, but that's a stretch. I believe ETSU wanted to leave the Southern Conference and it was 100% financial. If any Southern Conf. member should move "up" it would be Georgia Southern, and they have put the brakes on that idea. Maybe when the dust settles, some of these struggling 1-A football teams will drop to 1-AA and strengthen the division. Any thoughts?


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 Post subject: East Tennessee State
PostPosted: Mon Oct 20, 2003 11:50 pm 
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All-Conference
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Joined: Thu Sep 25, 2003 9:41 pm
Posts: 749
Location: Wilmington, NC
if it was all financial, which makes since considering they dropped football to save money, then i wonder why they went to the asun instead of the ohio valley. looking at the ohio valley, they are currently at 11 with both football and non football playing members. 12 as we all know is a nice tidy number and etsu would fit nice their geographically saving more money in my estimation then they will in the asun. my only guess would be the ovc didnt want them.


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 Post subject: East Tennessee State
PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2003 8:42 am 
Austin Peay and Morehead St play football, but at the non-scholarship (1-AAA?) level. For some reason, the conference wants all schools to at least play football, which is the reason given why Belmont (located in Nashville, OVC's home) was turned down for membership.


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 Post subject: East Tennessee State
PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2003 9:51 pm 
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All-Conference
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Joined: Thu Sep 25, 2003 9:41 pm
Posts: 749
Location: Wilmington, NC
interesting. with that being the case, the socon better look out b/c after losing etsu, i bet chatanogga is probably looking at the ohio valley conference very carefully now. etsu really had no where else to go since the two conferences that made the most since didnt want them. thats too bad, etsu was a really good mid major and i hope they can find a way to continue to succeed in the asun.


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 Post subject: East Tennessee State
PostPosted: Tue Aug 03, 2004 7:56 pm 
UTC's administration has stated that they have no ambition to leave the SoCon.

With Samford looking here, UTC may be able to make a good case for getting them in to help create a regional partner for them.


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