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PostPosted: Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:21 am 
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I have mentioned before that I spent my teen years in the Texas Panhandle and as such have a major soft spot in my heart for the WT buffaloes. Like any fan of WT from the WTSU days who saw them play at the top level of college football for years in the MVC, their success at the Div II level (annual attendance champions) is bittersweet. While I am certainly glad they are excelling at that level, I and so many others dream of them getting back up to the FCS level at least, to allow the more regular matchups with their old MVC rivals.

I think I have finally come up with a POTENTIAL scheme that could potentially allow that to happen while acknowledging the financial realities of the university, travel distance, and the DMA --- none of which allow for a "NORMAL" FCS membership.

Div II allows for the giving of up to 36 football scholarships. FCS allows up to 63 full scholarships or they can chose to divide up their scholarships and give up to 85 partial scholarships. But there are some exceptions. This is our potential opening.

The IVY and Pioneer conferences are FCS conferences that offer no athletic scholarships to football players. The Patriot league offers no football scholarships but does offer scholarships for other sports. The NEC offers 30...soon to be 40 full scholarships in football per school.

It seems like you could technically split the LSC into 2 conferences and have the bigger schools take the 8 year move to FCS without substantially increasing scholarship levels. I think it is a 10-15 year plan (-- troublesome as schools like UCO could bolt on their own before then).

The LSC is a conference of Div II dominant schools and a bottom rung of typical division II schools. It is a "haves and have nots" conference. The have nots are content. The haves dream of higher conference affiliation, possible body bag games against Tech, UTEP, and UNT, and NCAA tourney money. The haves have attendance in the top 45 of Div II's 152 members.

The LSC is already so large that they are a two tier conference to make coordinating schedules easier. They seem a notable Div II conference for upgrading. Eventually you could have the good Texas football schools move up as the LSC and most of the OKL schools and ENMU stay in Div II as the "Oklahoma conference" or some such.

I have TAMU-Kingsville going with the good football schools even though they are a huge travel anchor. Maybe they can catch on with the southland after upgrading...

The 8 year conference upgrade time frame gives plenty of time for the "new LSC" teams to complete the facility upgrades most have underway, but I suspect it would take longer. (Hopefully that would allow enough time for the ingress/egress problems and parking problems at WT to be resolved and new supporting facilities to be funded and built.)

On the FCS level the conference could slowly build up scholarships every 5 years or so, like the NEC. Honestly, I have no idea what the current scholarship load is in the LSC. I would think that the "new LSC" would need to all get to full loads in basketball and partial in baseball because in spite of the regions football love, basketball and baseball competence could potentially get revenue going and get the conference into FCS solidly. I think a lot of FCS schools would love to have more baseball and football options in the area to cut travel.

Finally, as an IAAA school TWU could develop into a or even the women's basketball/athletics power in the metroplex--- that would be totally be worth having in the conference. A very good investment there and a future add.

I think Commerce should not upgrade now, but maybe in a few years when they get their house in order.

FCS LSC
School enrollment pub/priv stad cap (att) arena cap DMA
University of Central Oklahoma 15K pub 10K (4K) 3K (OKC = 676K)
Northeastern State University 10K pub 12K (5.5K) 1.2K (Tulsa = 519K)
West Texas A&M University 7K pub 20K (12K) 5K (Amarillo = 191K)
Texas A&M University-Kingsville 7K pub 15K (7K) 4K (Corpus Christi =195k)
Midwestern State University 7K pub 15K (6.5K) 5K (Wichita Falls = 152k)
Angelo State University 6K pub 18K (7K) 6.5K (San Angelo =53K)
Tarleton State University 6K pub 5K (5K) 5K (rural fringe of DFW = 2.435M)
Abilene Christian University 5K priv 15K (8K) 8K (Abilene = 113K)
-----------------------
Texas Woman's University (eventual upgrade non- football) 11K pub - (-) 1K (northern edge of DFW metroplex = 2.435M)
Texas A&M University-Commerce (eventual upgrade) 9K pub 10K (2K) 5K (rural fringe of DFW = 2.435M)



Div II Oklahoma conference
Texas Woman's University (for now)
Texas A&M University-Commerce (for now)
Cameron University
East Central University
Southwestern Oklahoma State University
Southeastern Oklahoma State University
Eastern New Mexico University
+
Oklahoma Panhandle State?


Last edited by finiteman on Sat Aug 16, 2008 8:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2008 8:26 am 
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My thoughts are the league would basically be a football league, but basketball and baseball should be strongly looked at as revenue sports to help pay the bills --- not just as NCAA requirements. Along those lines --- more big markets needed. There is nothing that would prevent broadcast of basketball and even football games on local stations if we had a few more markets of note.

With that in mind, a few other good candidate to join a breakaway LSC in upgrading:

Arkansas Tech (Little Rock DMA)
S. Arkansas (Sheveport DMA)
Dallas Baptist Non-football (between Dallas and Ft Worth. DFW DMA)

Or you could possibly pick one of the MIAA schools, but be warned, they are mostly within 150 Miles of each other --- basically the perfect road trip distance. That probably drives up their attendance numbers. Who knows how they'd draw with a much larger footprint. The Arkansas schools are in the much more spread out Gulf South (although it should be noted there are a lot of small schools in Arkansas in that conference).

And 4 non-football schools we should consider flat out stealing from other FCS conferences to help our Basketball efforts:
UTA (DFW DMA) -- frequently targeted to be run out of Southland due to small athletic budget. Would be a godsend for the LSC.
Houston Baptist (Houston DMA) -- in the regionally unfriendly Great West. Ditto. Especially if we nab Dallas Baptist.
Oral Roberts (Tulsa DMA) -- a very poor school in a good market with a solid BB program which would likely welcome shorter travel and a conference in it's "religious footprint".
Centenary (Shreveport DMA) -- a tiny Louisiana religous BB school near the Texas border that might go with Oral Roberts if they bail.


Last edited by finiteman on Sat Aug 16, 2008 12:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 12:44 pm 
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Location: Dallas
Bumping up for newby david.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 28, 2008 8:26 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2002 8:05 am
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Location: Dallas
I had to hunt for east Oklahoma State as I had never heard of it. This line from their website is why.

"Eastern Oklahoma State College Athletics are members of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) and the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC)."

They have an enrollment of 2300. That is VERY small. Maybe one day they will become a university like UVU did a year back and could consider DII or IAAA status, but until then, they are out of the discussion.

Oklahoma City University would be a good member for this conference. With 3500 students, this private school would make a great media Anchor for the conference in Oklahoma City. IMO they would compliment UCO and be a nice public/private rival. They don't have the kind of budgets needed for more travel, so it would be ideal for them. This proposed conference is pretty non-typical. They work in it. A good name.


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