fighting muskie wrote:
OK, the BE adds Tulsa to replace Boise St., but who will be the add to replace San Diego St.? Rice? Any thoughts or ideas?
Probably no one. If the BE can keep Navy then Tulsa gives them 12 for football. Granted Navy has plenty of time to change their minds. UMass, which in my opinion is a bad add because they are so unproven, might get the nod if the Midshipmen bail.
1) There has been no indication that Navy intends to bail. I feel far more confident that they will be in the Big East in 2015 than some of the other schools. Navy operates with different objectives. They have seemed deliberate, decisive, patient, and dependable - in other words, entirely honorable - and I would expect nothing less.
2) I think it is the Big East that has "plenty of time" to act. There is no reason to add the 12th football school before 2015, so they don't need to make their decision for at least another year.
3) I agree that UMass would be a "bad add" at this time because their football program is unproven at the FBS level. They need time to achieve some FBS success, though everything else about UMass would make them a great addition to the Big East.
4) Adding Tulsa would be an even bigger mistake. Although Tulsa is very good across the board in academics and athletics, they have a tiny enrollment (about 4,000), which means a tiny alumni/fan base, in a modest-sized market. They have little media value, and little upside potential. Tulsa should be commended for maximizing their opportunity, but unless they can magically become like Notre Dame in the very near future, they are all they will ever be.
5) Big East expansion is being done with an eye on media value - just look at the markets they are in. We also know that football drives media value. So any Big East additions should have large media markets and good football.
6) Northern Illinois is by far the best available school for the Big East to add. Clearly, their football program is as good as any in the future Big East. Also, they have a large enrollment (about 25,000) and a large alumni base in a huge market (about 185,000 alumni in the Chicago area). I realize that Tulsa has the support of their former C-USA conference mates, and I also realize that the basketball schools might object because of NIU's crappy basketball program; however, I feel confident that if Aresco can show the existing Big East schools the difference in the value of the media contracts with NIU vs. Tulsa, then NIU will be the choice. NIU has enormous upside potential (and the basketball program can be fixed).