I just remember Florida A&M to the Sun Belt rumors from the not-too-distant past. If not those schools, I could definitely see the Sun Belt looking at schools like Missouri St or Jacksonville St. My preference between the 2 would be Missouri St. It adds a new new state to the Sun Belt map and Jacksonville St would be the third Alabama school in the Sun Belt.
Nice choice. But I would choose Jacksonville St. over Missouri St. because another Alabama school would pair-up the divisions, which a school from Missouri cannot, which is more West than East.
If Jacksonville St:
West: Idaho, New Mexico St, Texas St, Arkansas St, UL Monroe, UL Lafayette
East: Jacksonville St, Troy, South Alabama, Georgia St, Georgia Southern, Appalachian St
If Missouri St:
West: Idaho, New Mexico St, Texas St, Arkansas St, Missouri St, UL Monroe or UL Lafayette
East: UL Lafayette or UL Monroe, Troy, South Alabama, Georgia St, Georgia Southern, Appalachian St
The Jacksonville St divisional format above definitely suits the current schools better by keeping both UL's together. The Missouri St scenario would have to put one of the UL's in the East which creates a divisional-geographical "gap" between Louisiana and Alabama because Mississippi is not represented in the East. That type of gap looks goofy within a division. Athletically, I can't really distinguish them for the past decade. The Jacksonville St stadium holds almost 8,000 more. However, Missouri St is in Springfield, MO has over 160,000 residents while Jacksonville, AL has about 12,500 residents. I'm not sure how important TV sets are for the Sun Belt Conference though.