NCAA Conference Realignment & Expansion Message Boards
NCAA Map

Discussions by Conference:
  It is currently Thu Sep 18, 2014 4:46 am

Help support CollegeSportsInfo.com by shopping

All times are UTC - 5 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 31 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next
Author Message
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 6:59 pm 
Offline
Freshman
Freshman

Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 6:39 pm
Posts: 1
As has been discussed on this board before, Texas State plans on moving to FBS after the NCAA moratorium is up. The students have voted to increase athletic fees, we are expanding our athletic facilities and million dollar alumni donations are increasing. We just opened brand new Baseball and Softball stadiums this season. They are fully equipped with suites, chairback seats, and videoboards.

For football, we have recently begun an expansion project of building 15 new Suites and a few hundred "club level" premium seats. We will fully renovate our Pressbox next off-season as well. There are plans in place to remove the track and lower the field, increasing seats and eventually bowling, or "horse-shoeing" the stadium.

This is a rendering of what will be done by this upcoming 2009 season.

Image

Here are some actual recent construction photos.

Image
Image
Image
Image

Here is a picture of the "Master Plan" for Texas State University's Bobcat Stadium. A few more years down the road...

Image

So the discussion I wanted to start is what conference do you see Texas State moving to? I've seen a few threads talking about "oh, well if TxSt moves up, they might go to the blah blah". Well, there are no more IFs. Texas State IS moving up and they need to find a home.

The first one that pops into most people's heads is the Sunbelt. What do you guys think about that? Got another Texas team in UNT, but would the Sunbelt want to expand? There has also been talks of UTSA and Texas State moving to C-USA together as a pair. This would give C-USA some new media markets in the San Antonio-Austin corridor and TxSt and UTSA are already great rivals. The last conference thrown around is the WAC. It would be long trips for the Bobcats and the closest team would probably be La. Tech. Not a very ideal situation.

Well, what do YOU think?

:mrgreen:


Last edited by TXSTBobcat on Sun May 10, 2009 1:05 am, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 8:15 pm 
Offline
All-Conference
All-Conference
User avatar

Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2002 8:05 am
Posts: 700
Location: Louisville, KY
There is currently no vacancy in Conference USA. The longer the Big East goes without splitting, the less likely a split will occur.

The Sun Belt needs to shed some members (UALR, UNO, Denver) before taking on any new ones. Denver is probably headed to D-I oblivion in 2013 (i.e., Great West or Independent), but might pull out a Summit or West Coast invitation. Since Southland schools are wanting to move up to FBS, trading UNO and UALR for Texas State and UTSA would make sense, but the Southland prefers football-playing members.

The Southland doesn't have enough schools interested in moving up to form an FBS league. Even using a bunch of CAA, Big Sky, or Missouri Valley schools for football only wouldn't be an appealing permanent arrangement.

The Mountain West would want schools that are already playing Bowl Subdivision Football, if the Mountain West is even interested in expanding.

That leaves the WAC; currently at nine schools, with a Texas-sized hole in its footprint. If the WAC were to bring in 3 Texas schools, the WAC could split into three divisions for basketball and some other sports:

Central - Texas State, Texas-San Antonio, Lamar, Louisiana Tech
Mountain - Utah State, New Mexico State, Idaho, Boise State
Pacific - Hawaii, San Jose State, Fresno State, Nevada

If the Big East and/or Pac 10 moves, the race to backfill Conference USA is on.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 8:28 pm 
Offline
CollegeSportsInfo Admin
CollegeSportsInfo Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2002 8:05 am
Posts: 3811
Well, with CUSA at 12, I think it will be tough for any expansion. Despite being a now Southwest based league, is it worth bringing in 1 or 2 schools that are unproven upgrades and increase the membership to 13 or 14? I don't think so.

The Sunbelt could have some spots if they oust the non-football schools. In the coming years, there will be 10 football schools. If you drop UALR, Denver and UNO, and add Texas St. and UTSA, you've got 12 schools for all-sports. Not bad.

The longshot would be desperation by the WAC. If they were to lose a school or two to the MWC, they'd HAVE to look at upgrade schools. Add the Texas pair and you've got your bridge between NMSU and LA Tech.

_________________
Image

Image@ncaasports Image csi.com/facebook

Image
Like the new CSI Userbar? Feel free to use it here and any other forums.
You can save and host it yourself or link from here.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat May 09, 2009 8:33 pm 
Offline
CollegeSportsInfo Admin
CollegeSportsInfo Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2002 8:05 am
Posts: 3811
wbyeager wrote:
There is currently no vacancy in Conference USA. The longer the Big East goes without splitting, the less likely a split will occur.

The Sun Belt needs to shed some members (UALR, UNO, Denver) before taking on any new ones. Denver is probably headed to D-I oblivion in 2013 (i.e., Great West or Independent), but might pull out a Summit or West Coast invitation. Since Southland schools are wanting to move up to FBS, trading UNO and UALR for Texas State and UTSA would make sense, but the Southland prefers football-playing members.

The Southland doesn't have enough schools interested in moving up to form an FBS league. Even using a bunch of CAA, Big Sky, or Missouri Valley schools for football only wouldn't be an appealing permanent arrangement.

The Mountain West would want schools that are already playing Bowl Subdivision Football, if the Mountain West is even interested in expanding.

That leaves the WAC; currently at nine schools, with a Texas-sized hole in its footprint. If the WAC were to bring in 3 Texas schools, the WAC could split into three divisions for basketball and some other sports:

Central - Texas State, Texas-San Antonio, Lamar, Louisiana Tech
Mountain - Utah State, New Mexico State, Idaho, Boise State
Pacific - Hawaii, San Jose State, Fresno State, Nevada

If the Big East and/or Pac 10 moves, the race to backfill Conference USA is on.


Interesting about the WAC. But I'll say this...if the WAC brought in UTSA and Texas St., something tells me North Texas would join. right now the WAC is less interesting to them. But in this scenario, the WAC is clearly more attractive for the rest of their sports (with the 3 division setup, home-and-home in division basketball schedule).

_________________
Image

Image@ncaasports Image csi.com/facebook

Image
Like the new CSI Userbar? Feel free to use it here and any other forums.
You can save and host it yourself or link from here.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 2:20 am 
Offline
All-Star
All-Star
User avatar

Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2009 6:56 pm
Posts: 2803
I heard on the FCS board that Texas St. would not go FBS unless they had a conference first, is this true? A lot of times a conference want to see you take some lumps before they take a chance on you.

1.Sun Belt (it would put them at 14, UNO seems to have got some help and could be safe now)
2.WAC (if they have given up on La Tech leaving, give them a travel partner)
3.SLC (give up on the dream)

_________________
Image


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 6:28 am 
Offline
All-Conference
All-Conference
User avatar

Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2002 8:05 am
Posts: 700
Location: Louisville, KY
If North Texas bolts, Lamar would have a very good shot to get in the Sun Belt-they're a former member from the merger with the American South Conference, and would actually be closer to Louisiana-Lafayette than North Texas.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 5:58 pm 
Offline
Freshman
Freshman

Joined: Sat Jan 26, 2008 2:07 pm
Posts: 38
Fresno St. Alum wrote:
I heard on the FCS board that Texas St. would not go FBS unless they had a conference first, is this true? A lot of times a conference want to see you take some lumps before they take a chance on you.

1.Sun Belt (it would put them at 14, UNO seems to have got some help and could be safe now)
2.WAC (if they have given up on La Tech leaving, give them a travel partner)
3.SLC (give up on the dream)


A school would be taking a big risk going FBS without a conference invite first. I bet there's a lot of behind the scenes discussions right now by the ADs at UTSA, Texas State, Lamar, and maybe even SHSU. I don't see the SLC going FBS. None of the Louisiana have the money or desire to go FBS.

UTSA, Texas State and Lamar have new student fees kicking in that will really boost their athletic budgets. Lamar's relatively low $6.5 million budget will probably top $10 million in a few years, but they will be a slight disadvantage compare to UTSA and Texas State with their larger enrollments. But all three schools have mapped out plans to significantly upgrade their athletic facilities, which I doubt they would be doing if they were not eyeing a FBS conference.

I think some of the FCS schools in the east will decide to go FBS and we'll start to see some conference realignments, and that will domino westward, affect the Sunbelt, CUSA and the WAC. I wouldn't be surprised if a new FBS conference emerges after all this.

On a related note, I know how some people say that there's already too many FBS teams out there, but I think Texas can handle a few more teams. Back in 1980 Lamar, UT-Arlington and West Texas A&M were playing D1 football, and there was 10 million fewer people in the state, so adding 3 more now won't matter too much. The big difference between now and then is that the SWC no longer dominates the state. Although the Big 12 gets most of the attention, we now have the WAC, MWC and the Sunbelt trying to get some attention.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 12:20 pm 
Offline
All-Conference
All-Conference

Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2002 8:05 am
Posts: 556
Location: Dallas
Did they actually decide to incorporate a bit of a dig down? Good for them! That will help them a lot.

The thing about conference realignment is they mostly move from the top of the pecking order downward. While I still think in 20 years the Big 12 will crumble I do agree it is not likely to happen in the next 5 -10 years. The highest pegged conference with some inkling of instability is the Big East. Now 2 years ago it seemed very likely that the football and basketball teams were set to go their own ways in 2010. Since then they have had a dynamite football season and a dynamite basketball season. My impression is the BE is a lot more comfortable in it's skin than they were. I now think we may not see a split in 2010.

The MWC could bring in schools to increase their BCS allure, but none of the schools out there have the allure of TCU and that didn't get them in, so that is also unlikely.

CUSA, IMO is the most unstable conference. When gas prices were at $4 a gallon, ECU and Marshall were loudly complaining about multiple trips to Texas. Now that gas is down, the complaints have slowed. The problem is with gas prices low production has been cut. The low prices are largely cause by the speculators getting crushed by the market collapse and India and China also dipping into a recession, which stopped the massive Oil consumption they were using industrializing. Both of those countries will be out of recession in a year or so and the market is already bouncing back. The cut in production will cause a breakneck escalation in gas prices in the next 2 years and we could be looking at $4-6 gas. When that occurs, all of this bad will will resurface.

Today, (lol! New news changes the projections) I anticipate a 6/6 split with the west taking LA Tech and UNT and the east reacquiring old CUSA members St. Louis, Charlotte (adding FBS football), possibly a strong BB school like UALR, Possibly Temple (football only or all sports? depands on how the conference looks), possibly army and Navy for football, and maybe, just maybe, 1-2 sunbelt schools. The UNT and La Tech losses would really hurt you guys. Affiliation with them would be perfect for you guys, would make all schools quite prosperous, and would open a lot of doors by conferring added legitimacy to your efforts.

The WAC would be a nice scenario, but they are very resistant to FCS moveups. The schools at the top consider themselves MWC caliber and as such do not want to add more "fcs riff-raff" to their conference. Additionally the travel for all sports would be quite expensive.

I am anticipating small conferences emerging with cheap travel, allowing the flexibility of potential expansion if desireable, rather than a rush to 12 schools.

Now you might look at that and think that means you are in the Sunbelt. I don't think so. At the lower end of FBS, there is little money. In an environment with expensive fuel costs, I think the desire would be to shrink the footprint. I think schools like Ga So, the Citadel, Jacksonville State, App State, FAMU, and James Madison would be more appealing to them than expansion into Texas.

That either leaves you stuck in the southland, going as a football independent, or starting your own breakaway conference. I anticipate any movement initiating in 2010 to ignore the southland schools as they would not be ready until 2013-16. I think at that point it will make a world of sense to start your own conference.

The Summit has eaten their young, effectively killing any hopes of the GW to ever acheive an NCAA tourney bid, and it appears that the Summitt will likely end the GW as a football conference. That means that Texas Pan American and Houston Baptist will still not have an NCAA tourney eligible home in 2016 and more to the point will have no hopes to gain admission to one.

UTSA, Texas State, Lamar, and SHSU can take UTA and TAMU-CC with them sometime around 2017 or so (I have the exact year in a post somewhere. It is the year UCA becomes a "core" member of D1 minus 2 years---the NCAA allows conferences a 2 year cusion to drop below 6 core members playing together for 5 years. So if UCA becomes core in 2018, the texas 6 could leave the southland in 2016 without costing the remaining schools the southland's automatic NCAA bid).

Adding UTPA would give the emergant conference the 7 core D1 members required to satisfy the "5/6/7 rule" and get an NCAA tourney autobid, even though they aren't the grab a school like UNT could have been in defining the conference. Once they have that bid, they would be potentially just as attractive as the sunbelt, MAC, and only slightly less than the WAC (to some schools) if they could get their membership in football up to 8. At that point it becomes a reality to attract schools from other conferences.

I think adding a good BB school like Oral Roberts to reach 8 would be a good move. They'd likely love to escape the Summitt for a region that is more receptive to Oral Roberts and his teachings. Plus Texans and Oklahomans just like playing each other.

I think ULL would want to get in if the conference could line up 3 more football playing members that do not include ULM.

With no UNT and the sunbelt with WKU and MTU, It is very debateable if Arkansas State would want in. They have a long history with ULL, but they have an equally long history with WKU. Maybe Arky State would agree to join as a pair with ULL, but my gut feeling is they would not. (If there is no CUSA split, you could probably get UNT, ULL, and La Tech. In that scenario Arky state and probably NMSU are in.)

I think UCA would likely want to move up too and they could do so for everything but basketball without costing the southland their bid. It is possible that Arky state might join to try to block UCA from a move to FBS. UCA is an outlier to what would remain of the sunbelt so it is not all that likely they would be a targeting school. Could you land UCA & Arky State...dunno...It doesn't seem very likely, but if fuel costs are abusive, maybe.

Could you get NMSU, UCA, Arky State, and ULL to all join as football members? It would be difficult, but not impossible. Their are levers for each school that might lead them to join.

If you can hard sell NMSU to join, you could also get the WAC to (temporarily) agree to let your schools in for football. If LA Tech leaves in 2010, the WAC would be at 8 for a few years with only upgrades available. Assuming their management continues to forbid any upgrades from the FCS level, they would be screwed if they lost NMSU. If it looks like NMSU is looking at joining your conference along with ULL (and say Arky State), it is possible you could get the WAC to play with you as a 14 team conference in football only, depending on how resistant they are to adding a school like PSU or Sac State.

I have written this with the assumption that the Sunbelt would try to rebuild to 12 and suck up all the eastern candidates. Even a single eastern FCS moveup member like Jacksonville State, Tennessee St, or Georgia State, or a western member like NAU (if they ever get their finances straight. They have been rebuilding their sports facilities.) could tip the balance making football workable.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 2:14 pm 
Offline
Senior
Senior

Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2004 11:15 pm
Posts: 261
Location: Louisville, KY
Centexguy, the only people who think there are too many I-A schools are the ones who have the most to lose right now: the BCS schools. The less competitors for money they have, the better off they are in keeping the lion's shareof the money. That and many BCS schools do play games against nonBCS I-A and I-AA schools, and obviously the I-AA schoolscost much less to get in, and obviously aren't going to want a home game in return. Therefore, they want as many I-AA and as few I-A BCS schools as possible, to minimize payout game expenses.

wb, I agree with you that the WAC generally isn't interested in I-AA moveups, but they would DEFINITELY take Montana in a heartbeat. FB would already be mid-level with just 65 scholarships, and their men's hoops are on a similar level (having knocked off a still-solid Nevada a few years ago), and women's hoops is also attractive to the WAC.

As for where Texas State goes, barring a C-USA breakup, I think the Sunbelt would actually be game for taking them. This would put them at a stable number of 10, with the option of either adopting a Pac-10 like conference schedule, or being in the lottery to avoid either FAU or Troy every couple of years. What also makes them MUCH more attractive than other schools in the region that may move up is that they already have a football program in place. Charlotte, Georgia State, TSA, Lamar, etc. all have to build a program from the ground up, while TX state is already there, and already in the general footprint.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 2:52 pm 
Offline
All-Conference
All-Conference

Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2009 10:21 pm
Posts: 881
finiteman wrote:
CUSA, IMO is the most unstable conference. When gas prices were at $4 a gallon, ECU and Marshall were loudly complaining about multiple trips to Texas.... all of this bad will will resurface.

Today, I anticipate a 6/6 split with the west taking LA Tech and UNT and the east reacquiring old CUSA members St. Louis, Charlotte (adding FBS football), possibly a strong BB school like UALR, Possibly Temple (football only or all sports? depands on how the conference looks), possibly army and Navy for football, and maybe, just maybe, 1-2 sunbelt schools.


Not happening. No split for C-USA. just won't happen.

Saint Louis definitely isn't because they don't have football.

In football, ECU and Marshall can complain about two Texas trips, but they're still chartering a plane four times for football.

C-USA has eight core members centrally located within 500 miles of each other (Clockwise: Memphis, UAB, So Miss, Tulane, Houston, Rice, SMU, Tulsa). There are four outliers: Marshall, ECU, UCF, UTEP.

You're suggesting something like this saves money:
WEST: UTEP, Tulsa, SMU, North Texas, Houston, Rice, Tulane, La Tech, UALR
EAST: ECU, UCF, Marshall, Memphis, UAB, Southern Miss, Charlotte, W. Kentucky, Middle Tenn.

Here's about four reasons it won't happen:

#1 - Tulane and Southern Miss.

Why would Tulane going to join a separate conference than Southern Miss in an effort to save travel expenses? Tulane's going to swap Memphis and UAB (each six hours away, most teams bus there) for North Texas, which is eight hours away? To save gas money?

Let's take Tulane:
UTEP (gotta fly), Tulsa (gotta fly), North Texas (gotta fly), SMU (gotta fly), Little Rock (gotta fly, 7.5 hours), Houston (5 hrs), Rice (5 hrs), La Tech (bus 5 hrs)

In football, they currently fly everywhere except Southern Miss. That's one trip every two years they bus.
In this nine-team setup, if they're going to fly everywhere but La Tech. One trip every two years. No gain.

In men's basketball, they bus three times (vs USM, HOU, Rice, MEMP and UAB), and fly to everywhere else (five games)
In this nine-time setup, they're going to fly five times and bus three.

In women's basketball and volleyball, you have to drop travel partners and schedule with nine teams instead of 12. It will be random, but it boils down to five opponents you fly to and three you can drive. Tulane would be adding ONE bus trip every other year to what they did before (and that is now 5 hours to La Tech every year instead of 90 minutes to Southern Miss ever other year).

They save pennies on travel a year, but lose Southern Miss. For Southern Miss, the exact same thing is true, because it's easier for them to get to Houston, Rice and Tulane than to WKU, Charlotte and MTSU. The Charlotte/Houston difference is a wash (drive to NO, fly to CHAR/HOU). Except in soccer, volleyball, women's basketball... they play TWO teams in Houston, not fly to Charlotte and bus to Greenville.

#2 - Men's Basketball.
Memphis, Tulsa, UAB, Houston and UTEP were top 100 RPI teams fighting for post-season. Divide into two conferences, and instead of being in a conference with five top 100 RPI teams, the West would have four (Tulsa, Houston, UTEP and UALR) and the East three (Memphis, UAB, WKU).

#3 - Television.
The current C-USA TV deal isn't massive, but it gives the conference some revenue. Mainly because the areas these teams cover is an area of 19.8 million people.

14.8 million of those are in Houston, Dallas, New Orleans, El Paso, Tulsa (West teams)
5 million of those are in Orlando, Memphis, Birmingham... Hattiesburg, Huntington, Greenville.

The West is going to negotiate a TV contract with Little Rock, Denton (which is already included in the Dallas market) and Ruston (population: 20,000) instead of Orlando, Memphis and Birmingham? And with no more games vs the Memphis Tigers and UAB Blazers?

The East is going to negotiate a TV deal with Memphis, but without the two biggest markets from C-USA, with Charlotte, Bowling Green and Murfeesboro instead of Dallas, Houston and New Orleans?

The West teams would go from a conference market share of 19.8 million to 15.5 million.
The East teams would go from 19.8 million to 8.4 million, and that's if you count Nashville for Murfreesboro (MTSU).

Each side would be losing TWO cities from their market share which have NBA teams (The East would lose three, gain one).

Each side would have a much smaller TV deal.

#4 - Not enough teams willing to make it work.
For the reasons above, Tulane, Southern Miss, and Memphis are automatically against this. And that means neither side can pull it off. The East doesn't have six who want to go, and the West doesn't have six who wants to go.

The only way for C-USA to split would be if those eight core members decided to cut out UTEP, Marshall, UCF and ECU and go their own way. But since UCF, Marshall and UTEP were all voted in by Tulane, UAB, Memphis, Houston, Southern Miss and ECU; that seems doubtful.

_________________
1897-1898 | 1900-06 | 1926-27 | 1929-30 | 1939 | 1942


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 3:23 pm 
Offline
All-Conference
All-Conference

Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2009 10:21 pm
Posts: 881
Now, if you suggest that a Big East split would raid UCF, ECU and Memphis, I could see:

Marshall pulls out of C-USA.
The eight remaining members (UAB, So Miss, Tulane, Tulsa, SMU, Rice, Houston, UTEP) add Texas State, North Texas, New Mexico State and either Troy or South Alabama.


Rice/Houston
Tulane/So Miss
UAB/Troy or South Alabama

UTEP/New Mexico St
SMU/North Texas
Tulsa/Texas St

_________________
1897-1898 | 1900-06 | 1926-27 | 1929-30 | 1939 | 1942


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 4:24 pm 
Offline
CollegeSportsInfo Admin
CollegeSportsInfo Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2002 8:05 am
Posts: 3811
There are a ton of what-if's that could happen to trigger some change. A playoff system would open the door for a number of upgrades. And it would make sense for schools like Montana (even if it meant Montana St. as well). We already have South Alabama, Charlotte, Texas St, UTSA, Lamar, SHSU, Georgia St, Georgia Southern that have considered or are upgrading. I think more would follow. UMass, Delaware, JMU, So. Illinois, could all consider it. Basically, any FCS school that has been good in football might look to upgrade since they'd have a a playoff shot...just like in basketball seeing D2 and NAIA upgrades.

The CUSA split is less glamorous than the potential big East one, but worth looking at:

Figure that a CUSA split wouldn't need to be even to work. Of the 12 schools, perhaps only 3 need leave for it to work: ECU, UCF, and Marshall.

Again, if there is a playoff system, schools might consider moves they wouldnt' look at now:

CUSA: (WEST) UTEP, Texas St, SMU, North Texas, Houston, Rice (EAST)Tulane, La Tech, Memphis, UAB, Southern Miss, Tulsa
NEW EAST CONFERENCE: (NORTH) Buffalo, Temple, UMass, Delaware, JMU, ECU (SOUTH)Charlotte, Georgia St., Georgia Southern, FAU, FIU, UCF
SUNBELT: (EAST) Appalachian St., WKU, Marshall, MTSU, Troy, South Alabama, (WEST) Lamar, SHSU, UTSA, ULL, ULM, McNeese St.
WAC: (WEST) Hawaii, Fresno St., SJSU, UC-Davis, Nevada, NMSU (EAST) Utah St., Weber St, Idaho, Boise St, Montana, Montana St.

_________________
Image

Image@ncaasports Image csi.com/facebook

Image
Like the new CSI Userbar? Feel free to use it here and any other forums.
You can save and host it yourself or link from here.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu May 14, 2009 11:14 am 
Offline
All-Conference
All-Conference

Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2002 8:05 am
Posts: 556
Location: Dallas
JPSchmack wrote:
Not happening. No split for C-USA. just won't happen.


We will see. I am not prepared to gurantee anything will or won't happen. Certainly CUSA is no SWC, and that conference died. I think in terms of potentially unstable major conferences, CUSA is #1 today.

JPSchmack wrote:
Saint Louis definitely isn't because they don't have football.


I have St. Louis potentially returning to CUSA East. The Eastern schools include many founding members of CUSA and they have always been quite receptive to having a hybrid conference up to the last expansion.

JPSchmack wrote:
C-USA has eight core members centrally located within 500 miles of each other (Clockwise: Memphis, UAB, So Miss, Tulane, Houston, Rice, SMU, Tulsa). There are four outliers: Marshall, ECU, UCF, UTEP.


Yes, 3 outliers in the east.

JPSchmack wrote:
You're suggesting something like this saves money:
WEST: UTEP, Tulsa, SMU, North Texas, Houston, Rice, Tulane, La Tech, UALR
EAST: ECU, UCF, Marshall, Memphis, UAB, Southern Miss, Charlotte, W. Kentucky, Middle Tenn.


Actually I have been trying to be as calculating as to what might be likely as I can in this post and not trying to say what I'd like to see happen with CUSA. I am anticipating a desire by both resulting conferences to be as conservative as possible initally.

WEST: UTEP, Tulsa, SMU, North Texas, Houston, Rice, Tulane, La Tech,
EAST: ECU, UCF, Marshall, Memphis, UAB, Southern Miss, Charlotte, + Temple (likely football only, with a small possiblity of all sports) + Army & Navy (as football only members) + UALR & St. Louis (as non=football members) and maybe + 1-2 Sunbelt schools (but I haven't included any specifics there in this thread that deals with a conservative approach).

JPSchmack wrote:
Here's about four reasons it won't happen:

#1 - Tulane and Southern Miss.

Why would Tulane going to join a separate conference than Southern Miss in an effort to save travel expenses? Tulane's going to swap Memphis and UAB (each six hours away, most teams bus there) for North Texas, which is eight hours away? To save gas money?

Let's take Tulane:
UTEP (gotta fly), Tulsa (gotta fly), North Texas (gotta fly), SMU (gotta fly), Little Rock (gotta fly, 7.5 hours), Houston (5 hrs), Rice (5 hrs), La Tech (bus 5 hrs)

In football, they currently fly everywhere except Southern Miss. That's one trip every two years they bus.
In this nine-team setup, if they're going to fly everywhere but La Tech. One trip every two years. No gain.

In men's basketball, they bus three times (vs USM, HOU, Rice, MEMP and UAB), and fly to everywhere else (five games)
In this nine-time setup, they're going to fly five times and bus three.

In women's basketball and volleyball, you have to drop travel partners and schedule with nine teams instead of 12. It will be random, but it boils down to five opponents you fly to and three you can drive. Tulane would be adding ONE bus trip every other year to what they did before (and that is now 5 hours to La Tech every year instead of 90 minutes to Southern Miss ever other year).

They save pennies on travel a year, but lose Southern Miss. For Southern Miss, the exact same thing is true, because it's easier for them to get to Houston, Rice and Tulane than to WKU, Charlotte and MTSU. The Charlotte/Houston difference is a wash (drive to NO, fly to CHAR/HOU). Except in soccer, volleyball, women's basketball... they play TWO teams in Houston, not fly to Charlotte and bus to Greenville.


IMO, this is overstated and the motivations are misjudged.

Tulane has been trying to build an affiliation with texas privates for years. In the last days of the SWC, Tulane was the school the privates were pushing for membership. Tulane was a loud advocate for the admission of Tulsa, SMU, and Rice to CUSA. While I think the AD and other employees in the Athletic department may look at things like you do, that the school draws better vs. their traditional rivals, I do not think the higher ups are going to allow the Texas schools to leave without them. They want to be affiliated with top academic schools and the east simply doesn't offer that.

Lets take it a step further. Lets say that ECU and Marshall really piss off the Texans (I'll get into this in a second) and Tulsa and the Texas 4 decide to go and Tulane tries to stop a dissolution. Do you really think with the markets CUSA west has on hand that they could not get either Memphis, S. Miss or UAB to join them to give them 6? Lets throw S. Miss out there for a second. They are a #3 FOOTBALL ORIENTED public school from a poor state. DMAs, frankly weak competition, and Texas recruiting make it a tough pass. They may see a path for them to emerge as one of the powers of the conference ala Arkansas in the SWC.

Tulane is going to worry that someone might take their slot and as such is not going to jack around if Tulsa and the Texas 4 want out.

JPSchmack wrote:
#2 - Men's Basketball.
Memphis, Tulsa, UAB, Houston and UTEP were top 100 RPI teams fighting for post-season. Divide into two conferences, and instead of being in a conference with five top 100 RPI teams, the West would have four (Tulsa, Houston, UTEP and UALR) and the East three (Memphis, UAB, WKU).


I don't see the relevance of this arguement. CUSA is considered a damaged brand in Basketball. They only had 1 NCAA tourney team this year in spite of having a number of candidates. If they were 2 conferences they'd have had at least 2 and probably 3 teams in this year.

The west would not be designed with basketball in mind because the athletic departments in the west (ex. Tulsa and UTEP) just don't think that way. Still they'd have 4 teams that would likely be 18 wins plus each year out of their 8 teams (Tulsa, UTEP, UNT, and Houston).

The East would likely have to cobble stuff together, but could be better. Memphis will likely drop off to a bubble type team. UAB is that. UALR is that. Charlotte and St. Louis could/should be that again with a return to a regionally friendly conference---rivalries and nearer travel should help recruiting.

JPSchmack wrote:
#3 - Television.
The current C-USA TV deal isn't massive, but it gives the conference some revenue. Mainly because the areas these teams cover is an area of 19.8 million people.

14.8 million of those are in Houston, Dallas, New Orleans, El Paso, Tulsa (West teams)
5 million of those are in Orlando, Memphis, Birmingham... Hattiesburg, Huntington, Greenville.

The West is going to negotiate a TV contract with Little Rock, Denton (which is already included in the Dallas market) and Ruston (population: 20,000) instead of Orlando, Memphis and Birmingham? And with no more games vs the Memphis Tigers and UAB Blazers?

The East is going to negotiate a TV deal with Memphis, but without the two biggest markets from C-USA, with Charlotte, Bowling Green and Murfeesboro instead of Dallas, Houston and New Orleans?

The West teams would go from a conference market share of 19.8 million to 15.5 million.
The East teams would go from 19.8 million to 8.4 million, and that's if you count Nashville for Murfreesboro (MTSU).

Each side would be losing TWO cities from their market share which have NBA teams (The East would lose three, gain one).

Each side would have a much smaller TV deal.


I see 4 things that are very glazed over/ incorrect in this arguement. You have the wrong markets, there is no acknowledgement of market penetration (as a derivitive of fan support), the idea that it is a positive to be in an NBA city, and finally you are making a bit of an apples to oranges compairison by not dividing your totals by the number of mouths to feed.

Taking the last point first, your compairison would be:

status quo
19.9 M/12 teams = 1.658M per school

proposed (still listed with your submission of the wrong markets)
West 15.5 million/ 8 teams = 1.9375 M per school
East 8.4 million/8 teams = 1.05M per school

Now obviously the POTENTIAL is there for the west to have a better TV deal based EXCLUSIVELY off the DMA numbers, but there is a lot more to it than that. Lets look at DFW. DFW is a long urban sprawl of communities with a west and an east hub (Ft. Worth and Dallas respectively). To make matters worse, the Dallas Cowboys are right in the middle in Arlington, effectively splitting the metroplex and making SMU, TCU, and UNT all a bit of an afterthough. TCU has done a great job of grabbing as much attention as they could while the cowboys were in a smaller stadium in Irving, 10 miles closer to Dallas. But now the cowboys are in a larger stadium and are actively soliciting all of DFW for season tickets. SMU only draws fans from Dallas, and north Dallas at that. With the Cowboys needing to fill 20 thousand more seats, I wonder how much of a gain they will have in the area they attract fans from, even with the cowboys moving 10 miles further from them. Sure they could and probably will see a gain, but it probably won't be much of one. SMU is a private university and a midsized one at that with an enrollment of about 10K. They don't have a huge alumni base. This adds up to SMU only having a sliver of DFW's attention. On the positive note it is a rich sliver which is what you want for advertising purposes. UNT has an enrollment of 34,000 which gives it an enormous alumni base. The vast majority of those alumni settle in DFW. In spite of the fact it is a "music school" and not a "football school" that is still a huge amount of potential viewers in the desired market.

The added benefit of UNT which was mostly blown off is the same benefit that Houston and Rice deliver in CUSA. Houston gives the numbers, Rice gives the rich viewers.

La Tech --- I'll grant there isn't a strong TV arguement for them IMO either, but the schools involved clearly like La Tech and if you give them Ruston, Shreveport, and possibly even assume Little Rock (I would not) as the schools in the west who advocate for them likely do, it is more understandable. I list them mostly because they clearly had support from the west as a candidate for CUSA expansion. Tulane appears to like them best out of the other LA schools not named LSU and I think the Texas schools would let them in to help Tulane/appease Tulane.

The Texas schools do very poorly drawing people to basketball games (in large part due to NBA killzones in Dallas and Houston). Tulane also deals with competition from the NBA and UNO and the fact that their city is smaller than it used to be, so the support side of this argument is lacking. What that means is that they won't be able to pull the numbers in their markets that schools with strong support can, so their TV dollars will likely not be as strong as the DMAs suggest. That is why (in lieu of TCU who the CUSA West likely won't be able to land) a school with a large alumni base in Dallas like UNT makes a world of sense.

In the east, you have stronger fan support in football especially, but also in basketball where memphis is at least in the top 15 in attendance nationally. (Now keep in mind Memphis is now an NBA City and with Calipari gone, an unproven western assistant coach running the show, and the Grizzlies young and improving, the odds are the Griz will start strongly winning the competion for memphis fan ticket revenue.)


Lets start with football. I have tried to think about this question. "Is it possible to build a CUSA East that works financially without 'reaching down' for Sunbet schools?" It seems likely that to protect their BCS-like claims they won't want to reach down that much.

CUSA East's claim to fame is high football attendance. If they want to retain what BCS arguements they have, they have to retain that. CUSA East will almost certainly reacquire Charlotte for basketball and as they need a football home and there is history there. That is a decent market with over 1 Million people. Adding a startup doesn't help them in the football attendance arguement though---in fact it suggests they would need to look specifically for member with good attendance to balance that. If you look around the east there are not many of those. The glaring options are Army and Navy. CUSA used to have Army as a football only member, so there is recent history there. I think it is highly likely they would offer Army and Navy football only memberships and that both would accept. CUSA football is good enough to be respected, but recruiting depth is weak enough that Army and Navy could compete. Army is in the NYC DMA and Navy is in the Baltimore DMA. Eastern BCS school regularly play Army and Navy so there is no sub-BCS stigma. That gives the conference enough of a bump to offer Temple a Football only (or all sports) slot. Temple would certainly take CUSA over the MAC for football and as a former member of the BE, there is a perception (right or wrong) that they are playing at too low of a level of competition in the MAC. Temple gives them the Philadelphia DMA. (Temple/Army and Temple/Navy on alternating years should be great draws for Temple that will help their attendance numbers.) Right there you have 12.4M more native viewers for your broadcasts, plus Army and Navy have national followings making national broadcasts of regular season conference games more likely.

17.4M viewers/10 teams = 1.74M per school for football

In basketball, The east 6 would have Charlotte and Little Rock. That might give them a pretty compelling arguement to put in front of St. Louis. Could they give St. Louis a larger share to join? I don't know. I suspect that they could afford to do so as football revenue is better than basketball revenue. To me it seems a matter of figuring out what works for both parties and makes sense economically. (What is the financial value to the conference of re-adding the St. Louis Market and an established strong BB program near Memphis and Little Rock? I think it would be pretty high.) I do suspect that the A10 is not going to get into a bidding war to keep a regional outlier that offers marginal value. I do know St. Louis Basketball like Charlotte Basketball has not done too well leaving a conference of well known rivals. I do know that athletes do not like playing for outlier schools, so recruiting almost always drops off when a school becomes an outlier. (Athletes like friends and families to be able to see their games.)

That is a salty BB conference with St. Louis, Memphis, UAB, UALR, and Charlotte, likely at least MWC level, and likely a little better. If Temple decides they want in for BB as well, it could be even better.

without Temple (a tough sell for them to leave the A10 and their established BB rivals).
7.9M /9 = .88M
with Temple
10.8M /10 teams = 10.8M

While the BB numbers are not as promising, remember that unlike the CUSA west teams, most of the potential CUSA east teams draw very well and have strong support that often is not limited to a DMA--- some have regional support and Memphis (at least presently) has national support. This means while the west has underperformed it's DMA numbers and even in the scenario above will continue to do so (albeit not as badly), the east will likely overperform.

Now to some that might sound like I am throwing out the DMA as an evaluation tool. Let me nip that in the bud right now. The DMA is probably the best evaluation tool we have in quickly assessing the TV desirability of a candidate school for admission to a conference, but it is in no way the ONLY factor that should be weighed, and the evaluating of a single school for admission is a different process that designing a conference from scratch. That is all I am saying. Competition (both collegiate and pro), income level of alumni, size of enrollment and alumnibase, commitment to athletics (ie. athletic budget) and other factors have to be considered too.

JPSchmack wrote:
#4 - Not enough teams willing to make it work.
For the reasons above, Tulane, Southern Miss, and Memphis are automatically against this. And that means neither side can pull it off. The East doesn't have six who want to go, and the West doesn't have six who wants to go.

The only way for C-USA to split would be if those eight core members decided to cut out UTEP, Marshall, UCF and ECU and go their own way. But since UCF, Marshall and UTEP were all voted in by Tulane, UAB, Memphis, Houston, Southern Miss and ECU; that seems doubtful.


Again I think this is overstated. Memphis doesn't even want to be in CUSA. I have a hard time seeing them fighting off Ennui long enough to try forcing the schools to stay together and as stated above I think it is entierely likely that S. Miss would take west spot 6 if it was offered and Tulane knows it so they would take it first.

CUSA is a conference that I see fragile as it is contrived. The west schools don't have anything in common with the east schools. They are together to create the impression of being BCS-like. BCS conferences have highly respected academic members and strongly supported athletic programs. The east schools draw well for football; the west schools don't. The west schools have the endowments, high academic rankings, and national reputations as quality schools; the east teams, with no slight meant, are best known for their athletes. The current east schools have a modestly better basketball tradition.

I think what will kill this conference is that schools like ECU, Marshall, and UCF are going to look at the poor attendance out west and think that it isn't worth cutting their cheif selling point to the bowls (high football attendance) to take these costly trips to Texas. They will bitch about it publically and put pressure on the Texas schools privately. The Texas schools endured this in the SWC and in the WAC and will bristle. Then Texan pride will come out and they will grab Tulane and walk. IMO. But we are all speculating.

To answer the intial poster:
1) wac - possible but not likely
2) sunbelt - possible especially if there is eastern movement.
3) create their own possible and maybe the most likely scenario.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu May 14, 2009 11:16 am 
Offline
All-Conference
All-Conference

Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2002 8:05 am
Posts: 556
Location: Dallas
JPSchmack wrote:
Not happening. No split for C-USA. just won't happen.


We will see. I am not prepared to gurantee anything will or won't happen. Certainly CUSA is no SWC, and that conference died. I think in terms of potentially unstable major conferences, CUSA is #1 today.

JPSchmack wrote:
Saint Louis definitely isn't because they don't have football.


I have St. Louis potentially returning to CUSA East. The Eastern schools include many founding members of CUSA and they have always been quite receptive to having a hybrid conference up to the last expansion.

JPSchmack wrote:
C-USA has eight core members centrally located within 500 miles of each other (Clockwise: Memphis, UAB, So Miss, Tulane, Houston, Rice, SMU, Tulsa). There are four outliers: Marshall, ECU, UCF, UTEP.


Yes, 3 outliers in the east.

JPSchmack wrote:
You're suggesting something like this saves money:
WEST: UTEP, Tulsa, SMU, North Texas, Houston, Rice, Tulane, La Tech, UALR
EAST: ECU, UCF, Marshall, Memphis, UAB, Southern Miss, Charlotte, W. Kentucky, Middle Tenn.


Actually I have been trying to be as calculating as to what might be likely as I can in this post and not trying to say what I'd like to see happen with CUSA. I am anticipating a desire by both resulting conferences to be as conservative as possible initally.

WEST: UTEP, Tulsa, SMU, North Texas, Houston, Rice, Tulane, La Tech,
EAST: ECU, UCF, Marshall, Memphis, UAB, Southern Miss, Charlotte, + Temple (likely football only, with a small possiblity of all sports) + Army & Navy (as football only members) + UALR & St. Louis (as non=football members) and maybe + 1-2 Sunbelt schools (but I haven't included any specifics there in this thread that deals with a conservative approach).

JPSchmack wrote:
Here's about four reasons it won't happen:

#1 - Tulane and Southern Miss.

Why would Tulane going to join a separate conference than Southern Miss in an effort to save travel expenses? Tulane's going to swap Memphis and UAB (each six hours away, most teams bus there) for North Texas, which is eight hours away? To save gas money?

Let's take Tulane:
UTEP (gotta fly), Tulsa (gotta fly), North Texas (gotta fly), SMU (gotta fly), Little Rock (gotta fly, 7.5 hours), Houston (5 hrs), Rice (5 hrs), La Tech (bus 5 hrs)

In football, they currently fly everywhere except Southern Miss. That's one trip every two years they bus.
In this nine-team setup, if they're going to fly everywhere but La Tech. One trip every two years. No gain.

In men's basketball, they bus three times (vs USM, HOU, Rice, MEMP and UAB), and fly to everywhere else (five games)
In this nine-time setup, they're going to fly five times and bus three.

In women's basketball and volleyball, you have to drop travel partners and schedule with nine teams instead of 12. It will be random, but it boils down to five opponents you fly to and three you can drive. Tulane would be adding ONE bus trip every other year to what they did before (and that is now 5 hours to La Tech every year instead of 90 minutes to Southern Miss ever other year).

They save pennies on travel a year, but lose Southern Miss. For Southern Miss, the exact same thing is true, because it's easier for them to get to Houston, Rice and Tulane than to WKU, Charlotte and MTSU. The Charlotte/Houston difference is a wash (drive to NO, fly to CHAR/HOU). Except in soccer, volleyball, women's basketball... they play TWO teams in Houston, not fly to Charlotte and bus to Greenville.


IMO, this is overstated and the motivations are misjudged.

Tulane has been trying to build an affiliation with texas privates for years. In the last days of the SWC, Tulane was the school the privates were pushing for membership. Tulane was a loud advocate for the admission of Tulsa, SMU, and Rice to CUSA. While I think the AD and other employees in the Athletic department may look at things like you do, that the school draws better vs. their traditional rivals, I do not think the higher ups are going to allow the Texas schools to leave without them. They want to be affiliated with top academic schools and the east simply doesn't offer that.

Lets take it a step further. Lets say that ECU and Marshall really piss off the Texans (I'll get into this in a second) and Tulsa and the Texas 4 decide to go and Tulane tries to stop a dissolution. Do you really think with the markets CUSA west has on hand that they could not get either Memphis, S. Miss or UAB to join them to give them 6? Lets throw S. Miss out there for a second. They are a #3 FOOTBALL ORIENTED public school from a poor state. DMAs, frankly weak competition, and Texas recruiting make it a tough pass. They may see a path for them to emerge as one of the powers of the conference ala Arkansas in the SWC.

Tulane is going to worry that someone might take their slot and as such is not going to jack around if Tulsa and the Texas 4 want out.

JPSchmack wrote:
#2 - Men's Basketball.
Memphis, Tulsa, UAB, Houston and UTEP were top 100 RPI teams fighting for post-season. Divide into two conferences, and instead of being in a conference with five top 100 RPI teams, the West would have four (Tulsa, Houston, UTEP and UALR) and the East three (Memphis, UAB, WKU).


I don't see the relevance of this arguement. CUSA is considered a damaged brand in Basketball. They only had 1 NCAA tourney team this year in spite of having a number of candidates. If they were 2 conferences they'd have had at least 2 and probably 3 teams in this year.

The west would not be designed with basketball in mind because the athletic departments in the west (ex. Tulsa and UTEP) just don't think that way. Still they'd have 4 teams that would likely be 18 wins plus each year out of their 8 teams (Tulsa, UTEP, UNT, and Houston).

The East would likely have to cobble stuff together, but could be better. Memphis will likely drop off to a bubble type team. UAB is that. UALR is that. Charlotte and St. Louis could/should be that again with a return to a regionally friendly conference---rivalries and nearer travel should help recruiting.

JPSchmack wrote:
#3 - Television.
The current C-USA TV deal isn't massive, but it gives the conference some revenue. Mainly because the areas these teams cover is an area of 19.8 million people.

14.8 million of those are in Houston, Dallas, New Orleans, El Paso, Tulsa (West teams)
5 million of those are in Orlando, Memphis, Birmingham... Hattiesburg, Huntington, Greenville.

The West is going to negotiate a TV contract with Little Rock, Denton (which is already included in the Dallas market) and Ruston (population: 20,000) instead of Orlando, Memphis and Birmingham? And with no more games vs the Memphis Tigers and UAB Blazers?

The East is going to negotiate a TV deal with Memphis, but without the two biggest markets from C-USA, with Charlotte, Bowling Green and Murfeesboro instead of Dallas, Houston and New Orleans?

The West teams would go from a conference market share of 19.8 million to 15.5 million.
The East teams would go from 19.8 million to 8.4 million, and that's if you count Nashville for Murfreesboro (MTSU).

Each side would be losing TWO cities from their market share which have NBA teams (The East would lose three, gain one).

Each side would have a much smaller TV deal.


I see 4 things that are very glazed over/ incorrect in this arguement. You have the wrong markets, there is no acknowledgement of market penetration (as a derivitive of fan support), the idea that it is a positive to be in an NBA city, and finally you are making a bit of an apples to oranges compairison by not dividing your totals by the number of mouths to feed.

Taking the last point first, your compairison would be:

status quo
19.9 M/12 teams = 1.658M per school

proposed (still listed with your submission of the wrong markets)
West 15.5 million/ 8 teams = 1.9375 M per school
East 8.4 million/8 teams = 1.05M per school

Now obviously the POTENTIAL is there for the west to have a better TV deal based EXCLUSIVELY off the DMA numbers, but there is a lot more to it than that. Lets look at DFW. DFW is a long urban sprawl of communities with a west and an east hub (Ft. Worth and Dallas respectively). To make matters worse, the Dallas Cowboys are right in the middle in Arlington, effectively splitting the metroplex and making SMU, TCU, and UNT all a bit of an afterthough. TCU has done a great job of grabbing as much attention as they could while the cowboys were in a smaller stadium in Irving, 10 miles closer to Dallas. But now the cowboys are in a larger stadium and are actively soliciting all of DFW for season tickets. SMU only draws fans from Dallas, and north Dallas at that. With the Cowboys needing to fill 20 thousand more seats, I wonder how much of a gain they will have in the area they attract fans from, even with the cowboys moving 10 miles further from them. Sure they could and probably will see a gain, but it probably won't be much of one. SMU is a private university and a midsized one at that with an enrollment of about 10K. They don't have a huge alumni base. This adds up to SMU only having a sliver of DFW's attention. On the positive note it is a rich sliver which is what you want for advertising purposes. UNT has an enrollment of 34,000 which gives it an enormous alumni base. The vast majority of those alumni settle in DFW. In spite of the fact it is a "music school" and not a "football school" that is still a huge amount of potential viewers in the desired market.

The added benefit of UNT which was mostly blown off is the same benefit that Houston and Rice deliver in CUSA. Houston gives the numbers, Rice gives the rich viewers.

La Tech --- I'll grant there isn't a strong TV arguement for them IMO either, but the schools involved clearly like La Tech and if you give them Ruston, Shreveport, and possibly even assume Little Rock (I would not) as the schools in the west who advocate for them likely do, it is more understandable. I list them mostly because they clearly had support from the west as a candidate for CUSA expansion. Tulane appears to like them best out of the other LA schools not named LSU and I think the Texas schools would let them in to help Tulane/appease Tulane.

The Texas schools do very poorly drawing people to basketball games (in large part due to NBA killzones in Dallas and Houston). Tulane also deals with competition from the NBA and UNO and the fact that their city is smaller than it used to be, so the support side of this argument is lacking. What that means is that they won't be able to pull the numbers in their markets that schools with strong support can, so their TV dollars will likely not be as strong as the DMAs suggest. That is why (in lieu of TCU who the CUSA West likely won't be able to land) a school with a large alumni base in Dallas like UNT makes a world of sense.

In the east, you have stronger fan support in football especially, but also in basketball where memphis is at least in the top 15 in attendance nationally. (Now keep in mind Memphis is now an NBA City and with Calipari gone, an unproven western assistant coach running the show, and the Grizzlies young and improving, the odds are the Griz will start strongly winning the competion for memphis fan ticket revenue.)


Lets start with football. I have tried to think about this question. "Is it possible to build a CUSA East that works financially without 'reaching down' for Sunbet schools?" It seems likely that to protect their BCS-like claims they won't want to reach down that much.

CUSA East's claim to fame is high football attendance. If they want to retain what BCS arguements they have, they have to retain that. CUSA East will almost certainly reacquire Charlotte for basketball and as they need a football home and there is history there. That is a decent market with over 1 Million people. Adding a startup doesn't help them in the football attendance arguement though---in fact it suggests they would need to look specifically for member with good attendance to balance that. If you look around the east there are not many of those. The glaring options are Army and Navy. CUSA used to have Army as a football only member, so there is recent history there. I think it is highly likely they would offer Army and Navy football only memberships and that both would accept. CUSA football is good enough to be respected, but recruiting depth is weak enough that Army and Navy could compete. Army is in the NYC DMA and Navy is in the Baltimore DMA. Eastern BCS school regularly play Army and Navy so there is no sub-BCS stigma. That gives the conference enough of a bump to offer Temple a Football only (or all sports) slot. Temple would certainly take CUSA over the MAC for football and as a former member of the BE, there is a perception (right or wrong) that they are playing at too low of a level of competition in the MAC. Temple gives them the Philadelphia DMA. (Temple/Army and Temple/Navy on alternating years should be great draws for Temple that will help their attendance numbers.) Right there you have 12.4M more native viewers for your broadcasts, plus Army and Navy have national followings making national broadcasts of regular season conference games more likely.

17.4M viewers/10 teams = 1.74M per school for football

In basketball, The east 6 would have Charlotte and Little Rock. That might give them a pretty compelling arguement to put in front of St. Louis. Could they give St. Louis a larger share to join? I don't know. I suspect that they could afford to do so as football revenue is better than basketball revenue. To me it seems a matter of figuring out what works for both parties and makes sense economically. (What is the financial value to the conference of re-adding the St. Louis Market and an established strong BB program near Memphis and Little Rock? I think it would be pretty high.) I do suspect that the A10 is not going to get into a bidding war to keep a regional outlier that offers marginal value. I do know St. Louis Basketball like Charlotte Basketball has not done too well leaving a conference of well known rivals. I do know that athletes do not like playing for outlier schools, so recruiting almost always drops off when a school becomes an outlier. (Athletes like friends and families to be able to see their games.)

That is a salty BB conference with St. Louis, Memphis, UAB, UALR, and Charlotte, likely at least MWC level, and likely a little better. If Temple decides they want in for BB as well, it could be even better.

without Temple (a tough sell for them to leave the A10 and their established BB rivals).
7.9M /9 = .88M
with Temple
10.8M /10 teams = 10.8M

While the BB numbers are not as promising, remember that unlike the CUSA west teams, most of the potential CUSA east teams draw very well and have strong support that often is not limited to a DMA--- some have regional support and Memphis (at least presently) has national support. This means while the west has underperformed it's DMA numbers and even in the scenario above will continue to do so (albeit not as badly), the east will likely overperform.

Now to some that might sound like I am throwing out the DMA as an evaluation tool. Let me nip that in the bud right now. The DMA is probably the best evaluation tool we have in quickly assessing the TV desirability of a candidate school for admission to a conference, but it is in no way the ONLY factor that should be weighed, and the evaluating of a single school for admission is a different process that designing a conference from scratch. That is all I am saying. Competition (both collegiate and pro), income level of alumni, size of enrollment and alumnibase, commitment to athletics (ie. athletic budget) and other factors have to be considered too.

JPSchmack wrote:
#4 - Not enough teams willing to make it work.
For the reasons above, Tulane, Southern Miss, and Memphis are automatically against this. And that means neither side can pull it off. The East doesn't have six who want to go, and the West doesn't have six who wants to go.

The only way for C-USA to split would be if those eight core members decided to cut out UTEP, Marshall, UCF and ECU and go their own way. But since UCF, Marshall and UTEP were all voted in by Tulane, UAB, Memphis, Houston, Southern Miss and ECU; that seems doubtful.


Again I think this is overstated. Memphis doesn't even want to be in CUSA. I have a hard time seeing them fighting off Ennui long enough to try forcing the schools to stay together and as stated above I think it is entierely likely that S. Miss would take west spot 6 if it was offered and Tulane knows it so they would take it first.

CUSA is a conference that I see fragile as it is contrived. The west schools don't have anything in common with the east schools. They are together to create the impression of being BCS-like. BCS conferences have highly respected academic members and strongly supported athletic programs. The east schools draw well for football; the west schools don't. The west schools have the endowments, high academic rankings, and national reputations as quality schools; the east teams, with no slight meant, are best known for their athletes. The current east schools have a modestly better basketball tradition.

I think what will kill this conference is that schools like ECU, Marshall, and UCF are going to look at the poor attendance out west and think that it isn't worth cutting their cheif selling point to the bowls (high football attendance) to take these costly trips to Texas. They will bitch about it publically and put pressure on the Texas schools privately. The Texas schools endured this in the SWC and will bristle. Then Texan pride will come out and they will grab Tulane and walk. IMO. But we are all speculating.

To answer the initial question
1) wac - possible but not likely as they don't want to "reach down" for an FCS school or startup
2) Sunbelt - possible but would need massive defections and probably at least 1 other eastern conference to emerge.
3) Start their own - this just seems to me to be what the probable landscape in 2016 or so dictates.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu May 14, 2009 3:19 pm 
Offline
All-Conference
All-Conference

Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2009 10:21 pm
Posts: 881
Damn. This is like the Frazier-Ali of long winded posts! Well done, sir.


#1 - Yes, Tulane wanted to build relationships with the WAC schools in Texas and Tulsa (where the Tulane AD worked). Still doesn't mean they'd want to split in half and break ties with USM, UAB and Memphis, teams they founded the conference with.

#2 - The basketball discussion is the prime example of why a split is silly: The mediocre conference becomes two worse ones. The last time I checked, the biggest sources of revenue from areas outside your own college (ie why conferences form) are TV Revenue.

That comes in three forms:
Conference TV contract.
BCS payouts (hardly a factor since the best shot C-USA's had was 1998 Tulane. You need to go undefeated for a BCS shot)
NCAA Basketball Tournament money (1.2 million just to make it to the dance; and you don't even need to win your conference to get in)

That's why I think basketball is relevant. Memphis is still a national program. Not a final four team, but one that can stay in the top 25 and go 17-2 in conference instead of 19-0. And those two teams who beat Memphis will now get a marquee win and potentially punch their ticket to the dance.


#3 - What is the point of your "market size per school" stuff? Who is there who cares how many schools are in the conference and "how many mouths there are to feed." There's no mouths to feed. There's eyes for TV to sell ads to.

If your whole point is "how much a TV deal would have to worth for each group to make money," that's relevant. How many people are in the geographic area per school in the conference doesn't matter at all. How many people in those areas actually care for your product is important (see #6 below), but I am completely missing out on the relevance of market size per school.

#4 I'd disagree with the assesment of La Tech. I'm not sure what Tulane's interest level in La Tech is.

I think you can tell a lot about the La Tech-Tulane relationship by the chronology of 2003-06. I do not know the specifics of the C-USA expansion vote. I do not know if... the seven C-USA schools voted on adding SMU, Tulsa, Rice, UCF and Marshall, and then again on UTEP, or if all 11 voted after TCU bailed. I also don't know who voted for whom.

But I DO know that: La Tech was openly campaigning for C-USA inclusion and the league took UTEP instead. And after this vote, when Tulane needed a place for its football team after Katrina, La Tech took them in.

La Tech's attitude wasn't "Screw those guys" which means La Tech needs C-USA and Tulane more than Tulane needs La Tech.
From that, you can go either way:
A - Tulane will be grateful for the Katrina hospitality and be their advocate.
B - Tulane's stay in a condemned dorm an issues with racist campus police affirmed their belief that La Tech isn't C-USA worthy.

#5 I would agree with you on your assessment of UNT's alumni base and what they would provide to the West. I'd be an advocate for adding UNT...

However, why on earth would the teams in the west want UNT over Memphis, UCF and Southern Miss? (See point #7)

#6 Yes. I absolutely agree that market SHARE is more imporant than market SIZE.

For example, Dallas and Houston are really big, but no one cares about SMU or Houston or TCU or Rice... or North Texas because they all root for the Longhorns anyway.

The point of the NBA cities comment was to show that you're taking a league with a wide market SIZE (not SHARE) and splitting up the five biggest markets.

Do this: rank order the schools by market share. In your opinion, who's the most powerful and "in demand" schools in the conference? Isn't that what your list would be? Now add in the teams you'd think would join these 12 for two 16-18 team conferences?

Now after you do that, take a look at where each West school is and each East school is. And ask, why would the teams on the list give up the SIX from the other side in favor of the TWO-to-THREE new people on their side?


#7 - Virtually all of the first six points add up to this main one:

What is there to GAIN by splitting in half? Who benefits? How does each of the 12 schools benefit from splitting compared to staying together?

So far, all I've heard is that "travel costs" equate to savings that offset losing money from TV, losing markets, and losing rivalries.

I can't see why Houston, Rice, Tulane, Tulsa, UTEP and SMU would want to add North Texas and La Tech at the expense of Memphis, UCF, UAB, East Carolina and Southern Miss.

Or why Memphis, UCF, UAB, East Carolina and Southern Miss would trade Houston, Rice, Tulane, Tulsa, UTEP and SMU for Charlotte, Saint Louis and UALR.

Furthermore, Memphis, UAB, East Carolina and Southern Miss made up four of the six schools which voted to add SMU, Tulsa, and Rice in the first place.

They also realized the need to go to a 12-team all-sports conference instead of the hybrid model, which leads me to believe that they'd be hesitant at best to revert to that sort of model.

Even when you consider that the only advocate for a change to the current C-USA structure (besides those en route to El Paso), has been ECU AD Terry Holland. And he didn't mention SLU, Charlotte or UALR. It was Sun Belt teams in the discussion: Western Kentucky, Middle Tennessee State and South Alabama.


#8 - I don't want to sound like I'm totally crapping on the concept, the train of thought, etc.

I really think points 1-6 on this list are just arguing the semantics and the details.

My opinion is that I can't forsee C-USA instigating a change that splits the most powerful six teams in C-USA apart, as well as the six biggest population/TV markets, and replaces them with lesser schools.


#9 - I especially think it's unlikely given the situations with the Big Ten, Big East and Mountain West.

If C-USA splits and the Big East comes calling for one or two of Memphis, UCF, ECU, where does that leave UAB and Southern Miss? If the Mountain West takes UTEP and or Tulsa, where does that leave Houston, Rice, SMU and Tulane?

If the Big East takes Memphis and UCF, I'd definitely advocate adding North Texas. If the Sun Belt teams rise up and seem poised to surpass C-USA, I could see something happen there too (with the ECU AD leading the charge to dump the West and form a new league).

But making the first move appears to be a step down for both sides to me.

_________________
1897-1898 | 1900-06 | 1926-27 | 1929-30 | 1939 | 1942


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 31 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
 

 

cron




Looking for College Sports apparel? Support our partner:








Support Our Partners: Search Engine Marketing - Search Engine Optimization - Search Engine Training - Online Marketing for Restuarants

Subway Map Shirts - Food and Travel

Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group