This idea was prompted by the news of Northern Kentucky pondering an upgrade to Division I
The Horizon League picks up NKU, then nabs Oakland and Western Illinois from the Mid-Continent Conference, allowing it to split into two divisions:
Horizon West: WIU, WI-Green Bay, WI-Milwaukee, Loyola (IL), IL-Chicago, Butler
Horizon East: NKU, Wright State, Detroit Mercy, Cleveland State, Youngstown State, Oakland
Western Illinois gets the nod here over Valparaiso to keep from oversaturating the Chicago area and to gain some exposure in the nearby Quad Cities and even northeast Missouri.
The Mid-Continent Conference then makes a major push west, grabbing Denver from the Sun Belt, and five independents within or near the existing footprint.
Mid-Con West: Denver, Northern Colorado, Southern Utah, Utah Valley State, TAMU-Corpus Christi, TX-Pan American
Mid-Con East: Valparaiso, Chicago State, IUPUI, IPFW, UMKC, Oral Roberts,
This actually makes for decent travel partners:
Denver/UNC (64 miles)
SUU/UVSC (215 miles)
TAMU-CC/UTPA (149 miles)
UMKC/ORU (244 miles)
Valpo/Chicago State (56 miles)
IUPUI/IPFW (130 miles)
Centenary is sacrificed to the Southland Conference, which in turn is losing Louisiana-Monroe to the Sun Belt. If the Southland takes in Central Arkansas as well, this would give the Southland 6 schools in Texas and 6 outside of Texas.
This would barely keep the Mid-Continent 6/5 compliant, but it's good enough to pass. The remaining 6 schools would be Chicago State, IUPUI, UMKC, Oral Roberts, Southern Utah, and Valparaiso.