I just don't think dropping to FCS is a realistic option for Utah State, Idaho or San Jose State. In order for that to happen there have to be some serious budget woes, and once the move down is made it's effectively over for the program vis a vis fan/alumni/student/community interest, etc. If absolutely necessary (i.e., the dissolution of the WAC), the drop down is a wise or realistic move in terms of budgets and operating expenses; however, it would be a psychological blow to not only the entire athletic department, but possibly to the university's overall stature as well. It's an absolute last resort path for any existing FBS school.
As far as best interests for the MWC to kill the WAC, who knows? Too much speculation at this point.
I agree, none of the schools will drop their football programs to FCS. If they can't be in an actual conference, they will just have scheduling agreements. Might make bowl games more difficult, but something they'll have to live with until they can form a new conference or join another.
If C-USA loses a school i have to think Louisiana Tech gets the Invite. I personally don't see how getting the rest of the WAC schools help the MWC. If anything other conferences will gain. I could see the Sunbelt Dumping UALR and picking up the 2 WAC Texas schools. I see San Jose state dropping to the big west in Olympic sports and trying to join the BIG SKY in football. Idaho will most likely try and get a full member of the big sky. The same with Utah state. In all i think the MWC gains nothing from the other WAC schools unless their is pressure from Boise on wanting a rival in conference so they get Idaho.
I agree that that is certainly a realistic possibility, but at the same time, why should the MWC pull the trigger (though they sure stabbed the WAC a few times). Of the MWC's candidates, only Houston is really being considered elsewhere (Big East). The MWC will have their pick now and 5 years from now should they wait that long. On top of that, should the Cotton Bowl ever become a BCS game, the Big 12 can switch their tie in to that game and the MWC would get the Fiesta Bowl tie in. So down the road they will likely be an AQ conference, again their choice of the litter. And like I said, if another conference makes the first move, then they can make their move and still get anyone they want.
The MWC is always slow to move anyway. The Fresno/Nevada move was a counter attack that they had to make to save their conference. It took them years to finally invite Boise even though they were a dominant program trying to get in for awhile. My reasoning for keeping the WAC around is to make sure there are schools to pick from in the future. If they grab the rest and a scenario such as this one plays out, where do they go in the future if there is Big 12/Pac12 expansion? I'm sure they would manage with more C-USA west schools but that's not really the intent of the conference.
I suppose on the flip side is what if they lose a school or two before expanding to 12, then they may not be as attractive to say Houston and SMU. But I don't envision any Pac 12 or Big 12 expansion for awhile, not unless it's forced upon them.