D&Dfan, good points.
On the ole SWC matter, obviously that will never come back in the form it was previously. However, I can see the current C-USA transforming into a version of such. It has already shifted in that direction, and if the Big East took another school or so after a BE split, schools such as N. Texas, Arkansas State, and LA Tech could be added to another, revised version of C-USA. Of course the regional heavies, i. e. Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, etc. are gone from such a format for good.
Agree, a decision by Notre Dame and/or a Big East split with expansion would set off another wave of re-aligning. The SEC, Big 12, and the ACC may not change, but others could to certain degrees. I see the mid-major conferences near always subject to modifications from time to time.
You mentioned on another post about GA Southern moving up and being a rival to Troy. Certainly, south Georgia, compared to most regions, could handle another 1-A fb program and GA Southern has demonstrated some credentials if it chose to do so. Certainly they would be capable of competing in the Sunbelt or C-USA. In such cases, the dividing line between the better 1-AA teams of the Southern Conference, for example, and those of the Sunbelt, MAC, and even some in C-USA, are not so profound (examining attendance patterns, facilities, etc.). The biggest distinctions involve the number of scholarships allowed, and 15 more per year for a school such as GA Southern does not appear to be a huge obstacle.
On the other hand, a school has to decide if it wants to compete and be a dominant force in pursuing 1-AA championships, or face the reality that reaching the levels of the Georgias', Nebraskas', and Michigans' will be rare and a constant struggle.