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PostPosted: Sat Mar 07, 2009 8:36 pm 
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http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/art ... AD96OLVK01

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/sports/6295585.html

http://collegesportsblog.dallasnews.com ... -utsa.html

It occurs to me that Lamar and Texas State might quickly find themselves left behind... They should solidify their upgrade plans and try to get some kind of firm allegiance going with UTSA.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2009 12:16 am 
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No, for several reasons.

1. A 13 team CUSA...no
2. UTSA will have years of growing pains.
3. Needs to get San Antonio behind them instead of UT or luring a NFL team.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2009 12:50 pm 
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I am on record as saying I think there will be an east/west split in CUSA. I think they don't make enough money to pursue BCS affiliation and pay those travel costs. It makes too much sense to split east/west. With that in mind, I really didn't word my previous statement well.

I meant will the signing of Coker make UTSA look better in the eyes of the CUSA Western schools. Will it make them look like more than just an FCS upgrade...?

As it stands, CUSA/CUSA West/CUSA East will not just offer a slot to an upgrading FCS team. That reduces their claims of BCS-like status. Is the hiring of a A+ college name coach enough to let UTSA get around that?

Assuming a CUSA west/East split,
UTEP
SMU
Rice
Houston
Tulane
Tulsa

will likely look at UNT (just missed out last time over facilities and will likely have all new facilities since then.) and PROBABLY La Tech.

That would make 8. The Old SWC is 9. Now maybe they could work something out where Memphis slowly transitions as #9. That is a best case scenario. But if that doesn't happen, UTSA with their positives (Alamodome, Larry Coker, major media Market in SA, major bump up in athletic budget, huge alumni base, huge student body, and good convenient geographic location.) hits me as a school that could be the #9 to make scheduling easy.

It occurs to me that their stature as a legit FBS school just took a major leap ahead of Texas State and Lamar. I don't say this to bag on either of the other two schools, merely as a warning to them. There is nothing that says UTSA will get into the new SWC, but they could. It is in Texas State and Lamar's interest to get their own conference plans going with UTSA because they may be reduced to an outlier in a lesser sunbelt or an Independent without UTSA.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2009 3:07 pm 
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finiteman wrote:
I am on record as saying I think there will be an east/west split in CUSA. I think they don't make enough money to pursue BCS affiliation and pay those travel costs. It makes too much sense to split east/west. With that in mind, I really didn't word my previous statement well.

I meant will the signing of Coker make UTSA look better in the eyes of the CUSA Western schools. Will it make them look like more than just an FCS upgrade...?

As it stands, CUSA/CUSA West/CUSA East will not just offer a slot to an upgrading FCS team. That reduces their claims of BCS-like status. Is the hiring of a A+ college name coach enough to let UTSA get around that?

Assuming a CUSA west/East split,
UTEP
SMU
Rice
Houston
Tulane
Tulsa

will likely look at UNT (just missed out last time over facilities and will likely have all new facilities since then.) and PROBABLY La Tech.

That would make 8. The Old SWC is 9. Now maybe they could work something out where Memphis slowly transitions as #9. That is a best case scenario. But if that doesn't happen, UTSA with their positives (Alamodome, Larry Coker, major media Market in SA, major bump up in athletic budget, huge alumni base, huge student body, and good convenient geographic location.) hits me as a school that could be the #9 to make scheduling easy.

It occurs to me that their stature as a legit FBS school just took a major leap ahead of Texas State and Lamar. I don't say this to bag on either of the other two schools, merely as a warning to them. There is nothing that says UTSA will get into the new SWC, but they could. It is in Texas State and Lamar's interest to get their own conference plans going with UTSA because they may be reduced to an outlier in a lesser sunbelt or an Independent without UTSA.


A new Eastern IA conference is just begging to be birthed. CUSA is inherently unstable in its present form.

CUSA West + (New Southwest)

UTEP
SMU
Rice
Houston (if not in MWC)
Tulane
Tulsa
USM
Memphis (if not in BE)
UAB
UTSA*
La Tech*
USA (if Memphis goes, rival for USM, UAB, Tulane)

CUSA East

FIU or FAU (one, or both if UCF is gone)
UCF (in not in BEast)
Georgia St
Ga Southern
Charlotte
East Carolina (if not in BEast)
Appy State (if ECU goes)
Old Dominion
James Madison
Marshall
Delaware
Temple
UMass


Sunbelt
UNT
WKU
MTU
ArkSt
La-La
La-Mo
Troy
Jacksonville St *
FIU or FAU
USA (if not in New Southwest)
Texas St*


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2009 11:44 am 
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A CUSA split is a different story. Then yes count UTSA in the west.

UTEP
SMU
Rice
Houston
Tulsa
UTSA
UNT


Tulane... a big ?
Texas st is close to UTSA...Will they want to be in seperate conferences
Lamar has the money and nice mid-size MSA
Memphis and UAB wants to join Louisville and Cincy
USM would rather stay east in CUSA east
USA would rather stay east in CUSA east
ULL has size and mid-size MSA
Arkansas st could work, but they have other options like joining MVC...
Witchita st could join SWC if they add football. size and market.
ULM budget cuts and small enrollment might drop them to fcs and the southland.
SHSU good size, small market, lacking community support...

Maybe something like this

UTEP
SMU
Rice
Houston
Tulsa
UTSA
UNT
La tech
Lamar
Witchita st
ULL
Texas st


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 11, 2009 2:14 pm 
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I can't see Wichita St. leaving the MVC

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 3:33 pm 
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Fresno St. Alum wrote:
I can't see Wichita St. leaving the MVC


I agree. It's definitely the best fit for the Shockers, considering their location and the prestige of the MVC. Barring anyone with football deciding to go I-A (highly unlikely, UNI would probably be the closest, but I haven't heard much of any clamor for going I-A there), the conference is very stable. If there is any movement, I would see it expanding to take Butler and someone else who can help push their basketball profile higher.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2009 10:26 pm 
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playa4life wrote:
A CUSA split is a different story. Then yes count UTSA in the west.

UTEP
SMU
Rice
Houston
Tulsa
UTSA
UNT


Tulane... a big ?
Texas st is close to UTSA...Will they want to be in seperate conferences
Lamar has the money and nice mid-size MSA
Memphis and UAB wants to join Louisville and Cincy
USM would rather stay east in CUSA east
USA would rather stay east in CUSA east
ULL has size and mid-size MSA
Arkansas st could work, but they have other options like joining MVC...
Witchita st could join SWC if they add football. size and market.
ULM budget cuts and small enrollment might drop them to fcs and the southland.
SHSU good size, small market, lacking community support...

Maybe something like this

UTEP
SMU
Rice
Houston
Tulsa
UTSA
UNT
La tech
Lamar
Witchita st
ULL
Texas st



Yes, Tulane is a "have". They are a large endowment, top academic private university ina solid market in a conference made of large endowment, top academic private universities. Their football attendance is not bad and could become great if the Saints leave.

Texas State has one of the state's largest alumni bases and will give a league access to the Austin media market---a market they don't have. My impression is that they will probably have to pay their dues in a small conference at first, but they'll get there eventually.

Lamar doesn't have money in the big scheme of things and their market is tiny. No grab for CUSA schools beyond a personal like for Billy Tubbs and a decent BB program.

Memphis probably wants to be in the BE, but there is no guarantee the big east wants them. CUSA west is better than CUSA east for their BB. Tulsa is a regular power and Houston and Dallas are recruiting hotbeds to suppliment the very strong high school basketball in the Memphis region.

None of the others really hit me as schools that would interest the CUSA West. I think you have to realize the CUSA schools consider CUSA a half step at most behind the MWC. Would the MWC rush off to add Nevada Reno? Montana State? There is a pretty good chance that any new SWC will only have 8-9 all-sports members for a good while. (ie. the minimum needed for football or min +1.)


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2009 8:28 pm 
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tarkiokid wrote:
Fresno St. Alum wrote:
I can't see Wichita St. leaving the MVC


I agree. It's definitely the best fit for the Shockers, considering their location and the prestige of the MVC. Barring anyone with football deciding to go I-A (highly unlikely, UNI would probably be the closest, but I haven't heard much of any clamor for going I-A there), the conference is very stable. If there is any movement, I would see it expanding to take Butler and someone else who can help push their basketball profile higher.

MVC could split up.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2009 8:40 pm 
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finiteman wrote:
playa4life wrote:
A CUSA split is a different story. Then yes count UTSA in the west.

UTEP
SMU
Rice
Houston
Tulsa
UTSA
UNT


Tulane... a big ?
Texas st is close to UTSA...Will they want to be in seperate conferences
Lamar has the money and nice mid-size MSA
Memphis and UAB wants to join Louisville and Cincy
USM would rather stay east in CUSA east
USA would rather stay east in CUSA east
ULL has size and mid-size MSA
Arkansas st could work, but they have other options like joining MVC...
Witchita st could join SWC if they add football. size and market.
ULM budget cuts and small enrollment might drop them to fcs and the southland.
SHSU good size, small market, lacking community support...

Maybe something like this

UTEP
SMU
Rice
Houston
Tulsa
UTSA
UNT
La tech
Lamar
Witchita st
ULL
Texas st



Yes, Tulane is a "have". They are a large endowment, top academic private university ina solid market in a conference made of large endowment, top academic private universities. Their football attendance is not bad and could become great if the Saints leave.

Texas State has one of the state's largest alumni bases and will give a league access to the Austin media market---a market they don't have. My impression is that they will probably have to pay their dues in a small conference at first, but they'll get there eventually.

Lamar doesn't have money in the big scheme of things and their market is tiny. No grab for CUSA schools beyond a personal like for Billy Tubbs and a decent BB program.

Memphis probably wants to be in the BE, but there is no guarantee the big east wants them. CUSA west is better than CUSA east for their BB. Tulsa is a regular power and Houston and Dallas are recruiting hotbeds to suppliment the very strong high school basketball in the Memphis region.

None of the others really hit me as schools that would interest the CUSA West. I think you have to realize the CUSA schools consider CUSA a half step at most behind the MWC. Would the MWC rush off to add Nevada Reno? Montana State? There is a pretty good chance that any new SWC will only have 8-9 all-sports members for a good while. (ie. the minimum needed for football or min +1.)

Tulane is struggling, even with a big endowment. College football is dead in New Orleans.

No one in Austin cares about Texas st when they have UT. But they would still make a good pick up to CUSA

Lamar sits in a MSA bigger than Texas Tech's Lubbock MSA.

Witchita st would benefit in football in a move.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 14, 2009 11:08 am 
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playa4life wrote:
Tulane is struggling, even with a big endowment. College football is dead in New Orleans.

No one in Austin cares about Texas St when they have UT. But they would still make a good pick up to CUSA

Lamar sits in a MSA bigger than Texas Tech's Lubbock MSA.

Witchita st would benefit in football in a move.


All Louisiana schools not named LSU are struggling. Tulane has the advantage that they are a private school and not reliant upon state dollars. Tulane drew 22,700 per game last season in an off year, good for 85th best in the country. 3 schools in CUSA drew smaller crowds. They are OK. Again, I'll reiterate for you, if the Saints do leave, Tulane is the only football in town and they likely will quickly fill the superdome. Solid today in a conference with like minded universities with a chance for a big time future.

"No one in Austin cares about Texas State" but "they would still make a good pick up for CUSA"? Not following you there. They are either media relevant or they aren't. That's like me saying no one in Texas cares about UTPB but CUSA should grab them. Texas State at the FBS level is arguably a weak #1 in San Marcos with UT so close by, but if they played FBS, they could very well outpace a school like A&M as a popular #2 in the greater Austin DMA. Texas State has a huge alumni base, much of which are in San Antonio and Austin. They will be a much stronger presence when they play football at a level where big cities care about it. The realities are Texas State is still pretty far behind what UNT offerred and CUSA passed UNT over. I think it is pretty likely that Texas State will get a CUSA/SWC bid eventually, but not for at least 10 years.

I have talked with you a few times about the lack of importance of MSA's in comparison to DMAs, but I'm going to touch on it again as it would be a negative situation to have people on this board thinking in terms of MSAs first. MSAs are important, but DMA's are more important. DMAs (Designated Market Areas) are used for media buying and by advertisers in boadcast time commercial sales --- the basis of what a conference can get paid for it's athletic product's broacast rights. MSAs are not. MSAs (and CSAs) are just to determine the number of people in an area. MSAs, Metropolitan Statistical Areas, tell you how many people are in a community. CSAs, Combined Statistical Areas, will lump together related nearby MSAs for certain kinds of analysis. Lamar has a lot of positives. The size of their DMA (or even their MSA) is not one of them. The Beaumont DMA has 164K TV households. That is Less than 7% of the size of the DFW DMA, 8% of the size of Houston's DMA, 21% of San Antonio's DMA, 26% of Austin's DMA and only 48.5% of UTPA's Brownsville DMA. It is a small DMA for an FBS school.

The Beaumont–Port Arthur Metropolitan Statistical Area, "the Golden Triangle", has an estimated population of 376,241 as of 2007. The Brownsville–Harlingen Metropolitan Statistical Area (UTPA) has an estimated 387,210, but obviously they have more people in the surrounding communities that are included in their broadcast area. Metro San Antonio, The SA MSA, is estimated to have 1,990,675 people in it. I think the scale is depressingly obvious. But Lamar has it's own strong suits.

It is true that Lubbok and Beaumont are comparable DMAs. But it is an oversimplification to compare the two. Regarding a compairison of Lamar to Tech, that is like compairing UT to U Buffalo ---they have the same size MSA, but anyone who is being both thorough and honest in evaluating the universities can see an obvious difference in attributes. Tech is the largest school in the western half of Texas and acts as the defacto "flagship of West Texas". It has strong fan support in most rural communities west of Dallas and San Antonio. There are about 8 DMAs out there. They add up. It also has some noticable support in the Metroplex and the western half of the SA DMA. Lamar is popular in Beaumont and that very possibly is about it. We will see. It has been years since they had a well supported football team --- have those fans largely passed on? It's support in Houston is to be seen, and at least initially as they aren't in the Houston DMA, they will not be judged as popular enough to regularly televise in that DMA on a popular Channel. Lamar's positives lie elsewhere.

I am not going to disagree that WSU would benefit from moving up into the SWC. My arguement is that the SWC would not likely consider them for the same reason they would likely pass on Lamar. WSU is not Kansas St. (a #2 University). They are not a huge school in a huge market with established FBS football like UNT.

WSU is a #3, mid-sized public (I use "mid-sized" to describe public universities in the 10-15K enrollment range), in a small city, in a sparsely populated state. They'd make a ton of sense to schools in strong FBS conferences without BCS dreams, but not a conference with those dreams.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 14, 2009 5:31 pm 
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Getting back to the heart of this thread --- UTSA's improved stature --- is it possible that San Antonio-based UTSA has bypassed La Tech as #2 behind DFW-based UNT?

Could we be looking at a SWC of:

Houston (3rd largest University in Texas behind UT and A&M = 36K, Tx's 2nd largest, US's 10th largest DMA= 2.1M TVs)
Rice (17th ranked national U by US News, 4.6 Billion endowment, Tx's 2nd largest, US's 10th largest DMA= 2.1M TVs)
SMU (67th ranked national U by US News, 1.4 Billion endowment, Tx's largest, US's 5th largest DMA= 2.4M TVs)
UNT (the 4th Largest U in TX = 34K, Tx's largest, US's 5th largest DMA= 2.4M TVs)
UTEP (the 9th Largest U in TX = 20K, Tx's 8th largest, US's 98th largest DMA= 0.3M TVs)
Tulsa (91st ranked national U by US News, 915 Million endowment, OK's 2nd largest, US's 60th largest DMA= 0.5M TVs)
Tulane (50th ranked national U by US News, 1.0 Billion endowment, LA's largest, US's 53rd largest DMA= 0.6M TVs)
Memphis (the 3rd Largest U in TN = 20K, TN's 2nd largest, US's 47th largest DMA= 0.7M TVs)
UTSA (the 4th Largest U in TX = 34K, Tx's 3rd largest, US's 37th largest DMA= 0.8M TVs)
St. Louis (non -football) (82nd ranked national U by US News, 970 Million endowment, MO's largest, US's 21st largest DMA= 1.2M TVs; )


Houston (multiyear Ave. Att = 20K) last year 22K
Rice (multiyear Ave. Att = 15K) 20K
SMU (multiyear Ave. Att = 17K) 20K
UNT (multiyear Ave. Att = 17K) 17K
UTEP (multiyear Ave. Att = 36K) 37K
Tulsa (multiyear Ave. Att = 23K) 24K
Tulane (multiyear Ave. Att = 22K) 23K
Memphis (multiyear Ave. Att = 35K) 25K
UTSA (multiyear Ave. Att = n/a; alamodome cap= 65,000)

That is a salty conference with a pretty reasonable claim to BCS status, in spite of perceived low att numbers -23.5K ave. Remember Houston, Rice, SMU, UNT, and Tulane are in NFL Killzones. They compete head to head with NFL teams for ticket revenue, so regular season attendance numbers will always be lower ---especially when the NFL season gets going. That is understood. The Cowboys are moving 10+ miles further from SMU, which will probably help SMU attendance a good deal and hurt TCU attendance. UNT is getting a stadium with more than 20K good seats (fouts sucks) and would be playing teams UNT fans want to see. The eagles drew 23k for Tulsa last year (+6K) and historically draw better like this for their 1 out of conference home game each season vs. their home games against distant in-conference opponents who no one cares about. The Saints might move. If that happens, Tulane owns football crazy New Orleans. It is possible that shorter travel distances/better rivalries + two large publics adding travelling fans could yeild more appealing attendance averages for the bowls as well. UTSA could help Houston and Rice by creating possible sellouts with traveling fans. UNT could help SMU and Tulsa in a similar way. A 30K sellout amounts to adding about 2K to season attendance averages. Houston and Rice played each other in front of 35K last year. UNT/SMU could become that if they played in conference and both were not wretched.

The BCS is a coalition between universities that want to identify with other high profile academic universities and elite athletic programs and Bowls who want strongly attended football programs to play in their bowls. A collection of mostly great private academic schools like this would appeal to BCS members. The publics would help privates' attendance with traveling fans. It would combine rich alumni bases and large alumni bases in a relatively closely grouped collection of large markets --- a recipie for good TV $ and limited travel costs.

(I do want to note, in most threads dealing with this, I have assumed that UNT would be the school added first by a CUSA West breakaway. It is also possible that TCU might rejoin. The MWC is not exactly rolling in money. Travel costs are high. Media exposure is not great until bowl time. TCU's average game attendance is consistently down 6K to 30K since leaving CUSA. The cowboys are moving 10 miles closer to Fort Worth and into a 20K larger stadium --- that will likely shave off TCU attendance numbers, perhaps considerably. Anyway, in that scenario, UNT would likely be blocked by SMU and TCU. There are many possible reasons for TCU rejoining. One of the biggest is that if they stay in the MWC, SMU and the new SWC would likely HAVE to add UNT with their large DFW-based alumni base to prop up DFW viewership. --- People are pretty ambivilant about SMU in the Metroplex once you leave Dallas. --- That would bring UNT up to a percieved even level with SMU and TCU. Once you figure in the Cowboys' moving NFL killzone and potentially changing local media coverage, UNT could in relatively short order move ahead of both schools in football fan support. UNT has a much larger alumni-base in the metroplex. TCU could jump back in to block UNT and protect their recruiting edge. And that is just one reason. I think if the MWC doesn't get in soon, TCU may be forced to end it's experiment in the west.)

TCU (108th ranked national U by US News, 1.3 Billion endowment, Tx's largest, US's 5th largest DMA= 2.4M TVs; MYAtt = 32K, 30K last year.)


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2009 6:44 pm 
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DMA overlap each other so they are not the best judge. With streaming internet video DMA becomes even less of a factor.

If one was to use your logic, the Big 12 would kick tiny Lubbock DMA out for UTSA or UH or UNT.
Market sized is more important than fading DMA.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2009 8:46 pm 
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I think UTSA has made it clear they are want to get to the FBS as fast as possible. They have plans for an on-campus athletic complex that will eventually include a football stadium. With only the Spurs to contend with, and with San Antonio such a large metro area without a D1 team, UTSA will probably get the nod over a Texas State or Lamar.

I still don't think a new SWC-type conference of mostly Texas teams will happen. I don't even think that's a good idea. With Texas, A&M, Tech and Baylor now in the Big 12, these are the teams that now get the most attention in the state, even though they are in some of the smaller markets. Houston and Dallas are large metropolitan cities where local college sports isn't that important.

UTSA is still a young school with little sports history, so any jump to a bigger conference would be only because of their potential and the hope they deliver the San Antonio market. I don't think UH and Rice has delivered much of the Houston market to CUSA, or has SMU delivered much of the Dallas market, and they have a lot of history in the state.

Texas State may be in the Austin market, but UT owns that market, and always will. And as the Austin area grows, so does the entertainment options (and there are lots of options here). San Marcos is about a 30 minute drive from south Austin. From north Austin, there's a lot of traffic to fight and it can easily take 1 hour plus to get to San Marcus. It's even a longer drive from San Antonio.

Lamar has been D1 longer than both those schools, and they would have the area all to themselves. But they are located in a smaller market (DMA is 141 out of 210), but population is large enough to get big crowds in football if they win. Lamar still suffers from a lack of respect academically, and with the money problems they suffered through in the 1990s plus some bad decisions, they have put themselves in a position where they have to play catch-up. IMHO, they are about 5 years away from being able to go FBS. At that point they should be done with their $100 million capital campaign (they are half way there now), and enrollment will probably be over 15K. They should also be finished with their $30 milion plus of athletic facility improvements by then too.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 15, 2009 9:14 pm 
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playa4life wrote:
DMA overlap each other so they are not the best judge. With streaming internet video DMA becomes even less of a factor.

If one was to use your logic, the Big 12 would kick tiny Lubbock DMA out for UTSA or UH or UNT.
Market sized is more important than fading DMA.


Very few overlap and, technically, I am not sure any actually do. (Las Cruces is probably your example, but technically they are probably in one of the markets officially and the advertising to reach Las Cruces citizens is probably sold in the El Paso DMA.) You are way overstating.

Now the idea of streaming internet could one day make DMAs irrelevant, but 1) we aren't anywhere near there yet and 2) You still have to have people who want to follow the team. Lamar will probably have to build that up. Lamar is a mid-sized (10-15K) public. They do not have a huge alumni base. They are somewhat low profile with no football over the last 20 years and they are in a small city.

With regards to Tech, what part of this did you miss?

"...Tech is the largest school in the western half of Texas and acts as the defacto "flagship of West Texas". It has strong fan support in most rural communities west of Dallas and San Antonio. There are about 8 DMAs out there. They add up. It also has some noticable support in the Metroplex and the western half of the SA DMA. Lamar is popular in Beaumont and that very possibly is about it. .."

Tech has a noticable presence in those western DMAs. If you add those DMA totals up, they are relevant to more TV Households than several states. Tech's TV totals dwarf Lamar's.

Lamar's market situation is similar to UL Monroe's or any number of the smaller FCS Louisiana schools. I wish nothing but the best for Lamar and I think they are on the right path for them, but you are building them up to ridiculous levels based on a premise that does not seem to bode well for them even if taken at face value.


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