fighting muskie wrote:
Interesting thoughts about the a Big West and the delicacies of balancing the Cal St and UC system as well as the strange situation with Sacramento St and the Big Sky.
Here is another thought: would the Big West ever consider bringing FCS football in house? They already have Cal Poly and UC Davis. Sacramento St could join her Cal St sisters if at the same time they brought in a UC school like UC San Diego. The private school San Diego could be an affiliate in football. Grand Canyon and Utah Valley are rumored to have football aspirations and could be affiliates as well. Once a comfortable number of schools were established in the league others might feel comfortable starting or restarting programs.
I think that'd be a possibility if it was like an A-10 / Colonial situation: Northeastern joined the CAA in all-sports in 2005, their A-10 football team was the sixth CAA school with FCS football. So the conference switched from the A-10 (2 members) to CAA (6 members).
But The Big West has TWO. If they added Sac State, there would be the three. All the other west coast FCS members are either:
A. In the Big Sky now.
B. the lone non-scholarship program west of Iowa (San Diego).
So, long story short, there's simply no reason for the FCS Big Sky arrangement with UC Davis, Cal Poly and Sac State to change.
Not when all it gets the Big West is Sac State and UCSD.
The other aspect is that, IF the Big West added UCSD and a CS school for balance, they'd probably want a 12th school for scheduling. In that scenario, Sacramento State would be a less geographic ideal choice than keeping Davis/Hawaii as travel partners. Because if you add a 12th school, it can't be BOTH CSUB and Sac State, cause that's a 6-5 CS/UC split. Which makes #12 outside of California.
There's 5 LA-area schools now, so you'd be creating an extra long trip pairing SOMEONE with an LA school.
Whereas these travel partners make perfect sense:
Hawai’i - Davis
UCSB - Cal Poly
UCSD - Grand Canyon/New Mexico State
Northridge - Bakersfield
Long Beach - Irvine
Fullerton - Riverside