I get the impression that nobody is ready to commit to leaving just yet....
But let's put the pieces together.
MIAA is looking at going to 16. (adding 4).
Rockhurst was recently denied (perhaps only because the MIAA was not going beyond 12 at the time.
Newman (Heartland) is isolated, and would jump to the MIAA in a heartbeat.
Two OK schools (Central OK and Northeast OK State) tin the Lone Star want to go to the MIAA.
The GSC is ripe to split east-west.
They stated that a 12-team conference would be ideal. The schools in discussions are:
6 ARK schools in the GSC, 3 OK schools in the Lone Star.
You also have UA-Ft. Smith in the Heartland, and four OK schools looking to move up from NAIA:
Oklahoma City U, Oklahoma Christian, Rogers St., and Southern Nazarene.
They could easily assemble a 12 school Arkansas - Oklahoma conference.
Say the Lone Star Conference loses 5 OK schools... they can readily be replaced:
there are 5 Texas schools in the Heartland,
Oklahoma Panhandle St. in the Heartland, and
NW Oklahoma State looking to move up from NAIA.
So if these changes come about, we have a new ARK-OK D-2 conference, and the Heartland Conference goes bye-bye.
The rest of the GSC (8 teams - the 7 team eastern division + Delta State) must have seen this coming.
There has been talk of a new Tennessee - Alabama conference. See elsewhere on this board.
The schools I have listed in discussions were the 3 Tennessee schools in the South Atlantic Conf. (SAC)
Carson-Newman, Lincoln Memorial, Tusculum
D-2 Independent King College (TN)
Christian Brothers (GSC), North Alabama (GSC) UAHuntsville (GSC)
and 2 others schools that I forget.
Every remaining school in the GSC is looking at investing heavily in football and going to D-1 (FCS), namely: Delta State (MS), West Alabama, Valdost St. (GA), West Georgia, and West Florida.
So it seems that this shuffle is on, and that everyone is trying to make friends with whom they plan to land....
So the GSC and Heartland die. And a new Ark-OK conf. and a new Tennessee - Alabama conf. form.
Perhaps 4 GSC schools jump to D-1 FCS, and perhaps 4 NAIA schools come up into this D-2 region.
Perhaps nothing gets announced right now, but they are all talking about their future plans at the GSC meeting. Once we know which NAIA teams are approved to move up, things may be set into motion.
The first step would be either the MIAA expansion, or the departure of the GSC Ark schools...