Former VCU Coach, Shaka Smart has left VCU for the same job at Texas.http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaab/2015/04/02/shaka-smart-texas-head-coach-virginia-commonwealth/70857538/
George Mason's coach was a little older, but when he left Mason for Miami-FL a few seasons after Mason's Final Four, George Mason went back to being George Mason. I don't see why the same thing won't happen to VCU. They succeeded because they basically had a Top 10 Coach in the Sport all this time. Imagine if Bill Self went back to Tulsa, went on a run, then went back to Kansas. Kansas would remain Kansas either way and Tulsa would go back to being Tulsa after Self left.
Anyway, in a way, good for the A-10 that the Big East will now cross VCU off its candidate list. And Dayton would already be there if they were going.
Richmond just climbed over VCU though. I have it at Saint Louis and Richmond now if the Big East decides to expand with two schools.
Still, there is something deep down that the A-10 holds over the Big East...
(a scenario yes, but bear with me)
- Navy walks out on AAC. SEC declares them a power conference team and all is well again for Navy and their 100+ year old streak of Independence.
- Temple and UConn both eventually walk out on the AAC.
- The Big East made it loud and clear they wouldn't take UConn.
- Hurt by this, both Temple and UConn join the A-10.
Featuring.... UConn, Temple, Dayton (if not in Big East), UMass, Saint Joe's....
And many others who have shown up on the March Madness radar over the years... La Salle (recent S16), GW (a few second rounds), St. Bona (same), Saint Louis (if not in Big East, has made nice tourney runs).
A few things to remeber re: UConn football (and why they might drop it from FBS)...
UConn football's greatest year was a Big East Title and meeting with Oklahoma in the BCS Fiesta Bowl.
And the football team lost money that season. Playing West Virginia, Cincy, Louisville, Michigan, North Carolina ect. in a great football season (their best) and still couldn't turn a profit of one dollar (in football). In all likelihood, UConn football will never be that good or lucrative again. They were riding a wave and even thinking Big Ten or ACC shortly after. Now?
Look around at UConn's conference mates. Their football stadium is an hour from campus. Are UConn fans driving an hour to watch the Huskies get blown out by Tulsa?
All of this and the very real possibility that Navy will at some point* just walk away from the AAC. Is Connecticut going to sell more or less tickets after Navy of all schools deems the AAC unworthy?
*Army tried C-USA (which is basically what the AAC is) for four years (1998-2002) and then politely left. If Navy actually joins the AAC, don't expect it to last long. Navy "joined" when San Diego State, Boise State and TCU were also scheduled to join. Likewise, Army joined a C-USA with Louisville, TCU and when annually Top 25-ranked Southern Miss was the best football school in the State of Mississippi. (14-0) Tulane also finished #8 Nationally the first year Army was C-USA. Army gave it the old college try, looked around their senior year and said, "it isn't you, it's me". Navy isn't permanently giving up 100+ years of tradition to play Tulane and SMU. Their original intent was to play in front of Navy alums and also have an outside shot at the BCS. Cue wildly successful CF Playoffs replacing BCS, and okay their are a lot of Navy alums in Texas but San Diego State is the main hub.
Long story short, Navy will eventually humiliate/devalue the AAC by leaving it. (Heck, right now the Big East makes more money without playing football than the AAC makes with football)
Temple is always going to be a fringe member of anything (other than A-10 hoops) because it's Temple and even Temple doesn't like Temple. Connecticut will be steaming mad, deflate all the footballs on campus and continue to complete for National Championships basketball (Men's and Women's), but now proudly playing more East Coast Schools steeped in hoops tradition including rival UMass. Ironically, even their mighty Women's Team's biggest challenge this year has been from Dayton of the guess where, the A-10!