I think the MWC backed off because the candidates out there were less than impressive (no offense to your Spartans, but you were 1-12 and are 51-114 vs FBS since joining the WAC).
Basically, it makes zero sense to go after Utah State and San Jose State before the Big East finishes their expansion. If the Big East takes UCF, Houston and UTEP might re-consider.
If the Big East takes UCF for #18 and then adds Houston for #12 football... the MWC can get UTEP and one of SJSU/USU.
If the SEC does something, the MWC could end up with some current Big XII teams. Not to mention that the stronger the MWC is as a whole, the better the chances of current members getting Big XII invites.
I completely agree (and no offense taken, I actually used to be a Hawaii Warriors fan, but now I go to school here at SJ). I too had been saying wait on the Big East and see if C-USA loses some teams before expanding. March is probably when we might see some action.
the good news for the SJSU fans is that they made the radar this round, something nobody thought would happen.
If the Big East does ever expand to 10 with UCF or 12 with say Houston and maybe a 3rd CUSA school, things could change. But CUSA could replace those lost schools with options from the region, like North Texas, UTSA, Texas St., App St., GA State, JMU, Delaware, Temple, UMass, etc.
There will be a good chance that UTEP would be in the MWC mix if CUSA lost 2 schools. But then again, it would likely be UTEP and Utah St. if Houston ended up in the Big East. And even if CUSA lost only UCF, it's still doubtful Houston and UTEP would leave...the changes to CUSA would be minimal with UCF only leaving.
SJSU just needs to hope that there is room in the inn and that CUSA schools remain happy.
I know SJSU and Utah St. don't look as attractive as Houston and UTEP. And while it's not as good financially, I do think it's a benefit to the overall conference. Something good about all 3 Cal State schools in the same conference while all the Cal FBS schools are in 1 conference. And the MWC is really strong in Utah due to BYU and Utah. With them gone, Utah St. makes sense.