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Old 01-04-2016, 07:04 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

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Originally Posted by A10La Salle55 View Post
I am well aware of the expansion JP. This involves football though not basketball as I said.

AAC is not interested in a terrible football program. Maybe that changes and I hope it does for UMass's sake but why would they take a chance on that it might improve? Maybe you can look past that given if they had an excellent basketball program like Temple or UConn.

The Northeast college football market is one of the worst in the country. So many programs have been trying to grab ahold of some of it outside of Penn State. Rutgers is trying to get their program there. Syracuse, Pitt, UConn and Temple etc are some others. Yet, these programs have struggled for most of their years.

It won't matter how big the market is and if you grow into a good team if the market isn't interested. The northeast market outside of a few P5 conference programs do not do well. The northeast just isn't nearly as heavily interested as other markets.

Temple is a great example. They had a great season right? Yet, outside of Penn State and Notre Dame they couldn't draw big #'s despite how big the market is and how well they were doing. UConn Temple, AAC championship game, a New Years eve/day game on the line. Temple is ranked....can barely even draw 28,000 fans.

I don't have all the programs numbers in front of me but I would imagine that there are quite a few programs that have significant markets with both a decent football and basketball program. Old Dominion is one that comes to mind. Marshall has a pretty good athletic program as well.
Old Dominion would definitely be an American candidate (ODU is also a two-year old program). Marshall.... can't see it.

There are not "quite a few" programs that have significant markets AND both decent football and basketball.

There's none. No one left hits all three.

Here's your candidates:

UMass
Charlotte
Old Dominion
Georgia St
UAB
Buffalo
UT San Antonio
Florida Intl
Florida Atlantic
Toledo

Also, you're not inviting a school's past. You're inviting a school's future.

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Old 01-04-2016, 07:14 PM   #32 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

Am I weird for thinking Buffalo is a really decent candidate? Teams are okay, facilities are okay+, play in a city that exists.

Actually, looking at it, all those choices really suck. Buffalo included.
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Old 01-04-2016, 07:28 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

UConn would probably drop football, and join the BE before they would accept the slop you're suggesting for the AAC. They're gagging at what's in the league now.
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Old 01-04-2016, 07:38 PM   #34 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

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Am I weird for thinking Buffalo is a really decent candidate? Teams are okay, facilities are okay+, play in a city that exists.

Actually, looking at it, all those choices really suck. Buffalo included.
In the current state if affairs, all of them are pretty bad. Comparatively speaking, no, Buffalo wouldn't be a crazy choice. Hell, they recently had a top 5 draft pick in the NFL on top of it all.

That's basically the only team I'll miss playing yearly from the MAC...it was really fun beating them in the last game of the season to keep them from being bowl eligible. Could have been a nice little rivalry if the games kept going.
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Old 01-04-2016, 07:54 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

UB is such a sterile, bastardized, forced athletics program. No identity whatsoever.
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Old 01-04-2016, 08:01 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

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UB is such a sterile, bastardized, forced athletics program. No identity whatsoever.
Not disagreeing, just saying what the state of affairs currently is.
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Old 01-04-2016, 08:04 PM   #37 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

I've always figured they'd be a fit in the AAC, but by the time the invite may come, it's essentially C-USA.
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Old 01-04-2016, 08:37 PM   #38 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

sjhawk, you’re not weird for thinking Buffalo would be a decent candidate.

e-parade is right. It’s not a very good pool to choose from when you’re talking about the best of the bottom third of FBS on the eastern half of the US.


duq, I’d disagree with that assessment of UConn. They know that nothing is permanent and the ACC is at a weird number of teams with 14 football, 15 basketball; they know they should be in the upper echelon of that basketball league and keep making NCAA teams. And they know they’d be “next in line” for anyone expanding further.


Bill, you’re right on. The American’s historical membership includes:
Louisville (1995-2005 C-USA)
USF (1995-2003 C-USA)
Memphis (1995-2013 C-USA)
Tulane (1995-2014 C-USA)
Houston (1999-2013 C-USA)
East Carolina (1997-2014 C-USA)
UCF (2005-2013 C-USA)
SMU (2005-2013 C-USA)
Tulsa (2005-2014 C-USA)
Plus UConn & Temple. Navy was never a C-USA member, but Army was from 1998-2005 in football.
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Old 01-04-2016, 09:54 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

What about the MWC?

Boise, San Deigo State, Air Force, New Mexico etc. Wouldn't those present better options?

So let's say the Big 12 expands right? They take UConn and Cincy.

If UConn and Cincy were to leave the AAC right? Let's say it happens officially in 2017. What do you think that TV contract is going to look like when it expires in 2019/2020? It certainly isn't going to be another 125 million dollar contract.

Don't forget either even with that contract it didn't help Temple's athletic budget issues.
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Old 01-04-2016, 11:07 PM   #40 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

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Originally Posted by A10La Salle55 View Post
What about the MWC?

Boise, San Deigo State, Air Force, New Mexico etc. Wouldn't those present better options?

So let's say the Big 12 expands right? They take UConn and Cincy.

If UConn and Cincy were to leave the AAC right? Let's say it happens officially in 2017. What do you think that TV contract is going to look like when it expires in 2019/2020? It certainly isn't going to be another 125 million dollar contract.

Don't forget either even with that contract it didn't help Temple's athletic budget issues.
I'm catching hell of saying the A-10's top target if we lose someone should be Wichita State, and the American should go get Boise State, San Diego State, Air Force and New Mexico?

They kicked that can down the sidewalk before, remember, with Boise State, San Diego State, TCU and Air Force all coming to their senses and backing out.

That would only have been for football affiliate membership, and that's the only way something like that COULD work. Boise State and San Diego State were going to be members of the Big East (Football only) and Big West (all sports) at the same time.

Of course, the American cannot really pull something like that off NOW, because when they were gonna try it, they still had the Catholic 7 in their basketball league (and Notre Dame)

There's no reason for the MWC schools to want to do it when all that's left is Temple, South Florida, UCF, Houston, SMU, Memphis, ECU, Tulane and Tulsa.

And quite honestly, if UConn and Cincy go to the Big XII... Houston, SMU, Tulsa and Memphis might start thinking the MWC would be a better home for them.

Or maybe the best of MWC and the Western part of the American join up for a new league.

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Old 01-05-2016, 05:40 AM   #41 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

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Originally Posted by A10La Salle55 View Post
AAC is not interested in a terrible football program. Maybe that changes and I hope it does for UMass's sake but why would they take a chance on that it might improve? Maybe you can look past that given if they had an excellent basketball program like Temple or UConn.

The Northeast college football market is one of the worst in the country. So many programs have been trying to grab ahold of some of it outside of Penn State. Rutgers is trying to get their program there. Syracuse, Pitt, UConn and Temple etc are some others. Yet, these programs have struggled for most of their years.

It won't matter how big the market is and if you grow into a good team if the market isn't interested. The northeast market outside of a few P5 conference programs do not do well. The northeast just isn't nearly as heavily interested as other markets.

Temple is a great example. They had a great season right? Yet, outside of Penn State and Notre Dame they couldn't draw big #'s despite how big the market is and how well they were doing. UConn Temple, AAC championship game, a New Years eve/day game on the line. Temple is ranked....can barely even draw 28,000 fans.
Recent on field/court results are a very short-sighted way of looking at the quality of a program. The northeast has shown a willingness to support college basketball and pro football, I'm confident that college football can grow in popularity if they have the option of rooting for meaningful football beyond BC. Fan support doesn't just appear out of thin air though, it's going to take years to cultivate it, but it can be done.
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Old 01-05-2016, 06:07 AM   #42 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

Just out of curiosity, and not trying to debate where UMass may go or what conference is plausible, but where do most UMass fans sit on the football vs. basketball discussion? Do you want to see the school move to a conference for football decisions that could hurt the basketball program? Do you want UMass to stay in the A10 and not try to go FBS?
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Old 01-05-2016, 06:44 AM   #43 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

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...I'm confident that college football can grow in popularity if they have the option of rooting for meaningful football beyond BC. Fan support doesn't just appear out of thin air though, it's going to take years to cultivate it, but it can be done.
I disagree with this. And not trying to start a fight or anything, I just don't see it ever happening, certainly not in New England. From the NE perspective, the sports fans there are entrenched in Boston sports (4 majors) or NY sports (8 majors). There is no shortage of options outside college FB on Thursday nights or Saturday afternoon.

From an overall perspective, I think sports infatuation is going to decline in the coming decades. Particularly in college athletics and definitely where there is little to no interest at present time. We are in the baby boomer age of college FB attendance... the stands are filled with 50-65 year-old bleed-their-colors fans. Unfortunately, those people aren't getting any younger. There have been articles about the changing attitudes and interests of the college kids towards athletics. When a school like Duke can start allotting unused student seating you know the interest, while still high, is no longer at its peak.

There's a paradigm shift going on right now. Who knows the root cause, is it apathy, technology, other non-sport interests, parents who no longer care therefore kids don't care? I'm not sure. Behavioral scientists and sociologists can tackle that one. But if I'm UMass, knowing the sports landscape in NE, and an already somewhat fickle fan base towards their best/biggest program, I'm not sure I'd be banking on FBS football for anything.

Along the same line of discussion - is there any FBS program that started up in the last 20 years that has an incredible fan base today? If so, where are they located? I'm thinking of USF and UCF in particular but they are in football gold mine Florida.

I'm not saying it couldn't happen, I would just think it highly unlikely, and unless a school has major economic stability with money to spare, to me, it looks like a losing proposition.
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Old 01-05-2016, 07:01 AM   #44 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

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Just out of curiosity, and not trying to debate where UMass may go or what conference is plausible, but where do most UMass fans sit on the football vs. basketball discussion? Do you want to see the school move to a conference for football decisions that could hurt the basketball program? Do you want UMass to stay in the A10 and not try to go FBS?
I think the vast majority of UMass basketball fans are ok with the possibility of moving to the AAC, but they're not thrilled by it. Football fan or not, the move is generally regarded as a mostly sideways move for the basketball program. UConn, Cincinnati, Memphis, Temple and SMU are able to recruit and generally operate at a high level while in the AAC. I don't see how moving to the AAC would negatively impact UMass. Big picture, that move is also necessary if UMass is to have any chance at one day moving into a P5 league which I have to assume is the really long-term goal.

The A10 has been good to UMass, but ever since Temple bolted I don't think there are a lot of fans out there who are adamant that UMass should stay. The overall basketball package in the A10 is on par with the AAC but could shift to favoring the A10 depending on who leaves the AAC. From a basketball perspective there's a fair amount of mediocrity in the AAC and there would be a lot of games that are of little interest to fans. That being said, the prospect of adding rivalry games with Temple and UConn is huge and way more appealing to the vast majority of UMass fans than anything the A10 can offer.

All that being said, if UConn departs the AAC before UMass joins, it might change some people's tune.
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Old 01-05-2016, 07:40 AM   #45 (permalink)
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Re: Reshuffling Conferences

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I disagree with this. And not trying to start a fight or anything, I just don't see it ever happening, certainly not in New England. From the NE perspective, the sports fans there are entrenched in Boston sports (4 majors) or NY sports (8 majors). There is no shortage of options outside college FB on Thursday nights or Saturday afternoon.
Football (of the pro variety) is already popular in the northeast. College sports have shown the ability to be popular (UConn basketball, UMass basketball when they were consistently good). It's not a giant leap to think that UMass football can become popular if they're playing teams not in the MAC and if the product on the field improves. BC has been the biggest college football program in the northeast for a long time and BC is not likeable unless you're a BC alum, they're viewed at elitist and snobby. UMass and UConn have the potential to become far bigger.

There are certainly a lot of hurdles to getting into the AAC (and beyond), it's going to take some major lobbying by the UMass president and AD to make it happen and some forward thinking from the AAC. Then it's going to take a lot of time, money and work to grow the fan base. But it is doable.
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