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Why did the Great Midwest Conference form?
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Fighting Muskie Online
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Post: #71
RE: Why did the Great Midwest Conference form?
I guess it all depends on how patient the Big East football crew was and if at the time of its formation if it was already apparent that the SWC was breaking up. I don't remember the exact date that the Big 12 plans were unveiled.

If they knew Houston was going to be an option I think they get the #12 spot over Tulane.

I agree that those are probably the 4 that join the basketball 6 portion of the Big East.

I think in the world of the Metro Tulane, USM, VCU, USF, and Charlotte bring over UAB from the Great Midwest (Dayton & Xavier to the A-10). I think Tulane and USM see the value of a football league and push for Tulsa, Rice, SMU, and TCU when they become available. I think a more regional league would have more appeal for the 3 SWC schools over the far flung WAC. They might hodge podge some affiliates like ECU, ULL, LA Tech, and Arkansas St either as alternative of to round out the league.
09-14-2017 07:27 PM
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megadrone Offline
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Post: #72
RE: Why did the Great Midwest Conference form?
(09-14-2017 07:27 PM)Fighting Muskie Wrote:  I guess it all depends on how patient the Big East football crew was and if at the time of its formation if it was already apparent that the SWC was breaking up. I don't remember the exact date that the Big 12 plans were unveiled.

If they knew Houston was going to be an option I think they get the #12 spot over Tulane.

I agree that those are probably the 4 that join the basketball 6 portion of the Big East.

I think in the world of the Metro Tulane, USM, VCU, USF, and Charlotte bring over UAB from the Great Midwest (Dayton & Xavier to the A-10). I think Tulane and USM see the value of a football league and push for Tulsa, Rice, SMU, and TCU when they become available. I think a more regional league would have more appeal for the 3 SWC schools over the far flung WAC. They might hodge podge some affiliates like ECU, ULL, LA Tech, and Arkansas St either as alternative of to round out the league.

And maybe a 12 team WAC survives.
09-14-2017 08:44 PM
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Post: #73
RE: Why did the Great Midwest Conference form?
There was a story after Arkansas left that claimed the SWC had voted to admit either Tulsa or Tulane (can't remember which) by a 6-2 vote and UT and TAMU declared that they would leave so they voted again and turned down the expansion. That in all likelihood was the moment the SWC died and cleared the way for CUSA to form.
09-14-2017 10:41 PM
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esayem Offline
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Post: #74
RE: Why did the Great Midwest Conference form?
(09-14-2017 10:41 PM)arkstfan Wrote:  There was a story after Arkansas left that claimed the SWC had voted to admit either Tulsa or Tulane (can't remember which) by a 6-2 vote and UT and TAMU declared that they would leave so they voted again and turned down the expansion. That in all likelihood was the moment the SWC died and cleared the way for CUSA to form.

Tulane was one vote short, but I don't believe there was a re-vote. Tulsa declared they were interested but it was not reciprocated. After Tulane wasn't admitted, the commish pushed for Louisville and Memphis, but it fell upon deaf ears and the Big 8 plucked their favorite four.
09-15-2017 02:00 PM
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solohawks Offline
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Post: #75
RE: Why did the Great Midwest Conference form?
(09-14-2017 07:27 PM)Fighting Muskie Wrote:  I guess it all depends on how patient the Big East football crew was and if at the time of its formation if it was already apparent that the SWC was breaking up. I don't remember the exact date that the Big 12 plans were unveiled.

If they knew Houston was going to be an option I think they get the #12 spot over Tulane.

I agree that those are probably the 4 that join the basketball 6 portion of the Big East.

I think in the world of the Metro Tulane, USM, VCU, USF, and Charlotte bring over UAB from the Great Midwest (Dayton & Xavier to the A-10). I think Tulane and USM see the value of a football league and push for Tulsa, Rice, SMU, and TCU when they become available. I think a more regional league would have more appeal for the 3 SWC schools over the far flung WAC. They might hodge podge some affiliates like ECU, ULL, LA Tech, and Arkansas St either as alternative of to round out the league.

I picked Tulane over Houston on my scenario as I figured BC and Cuse would be more apt to expansion if it included another private school.

USM and UAB would need league for basketball so I figured the Metro would survive and CUSA would never form thus forcing Houston to the WAC

If you wanna get really creative, The Breakaway 8 steal the WAC 16 concept and create a western 8 team division with Louisville, Cincy, Memphis, Tulane, Houston, Rice, SMU, and TCU.

The WAC then only expands to 14 taking UNLV, San Jose St, Nevada, and Utah St allowing that conference to have sensible divisions with no issues.
West:
Hawaii, Fresno St, San Diego St, San Jose St, UNLV, Nevada, Utah St
Mountain:
UTEP, New Mexico, Col St, Air Force, Wyoming, BYU, Utah

No division issues no WAC breakup. What better way for Utah and BYU to include Utah St then to put them in the Western division where they would never play.

Outside of Boise, Idaho, N Texas, and NMSU being left for dead in the Big West, it works out much cleaner. Eventually the remaining southern indys like ECU, UCF, La Tech, UAB, ULL, Ark St, and left out USM would align. Throw in N Texas and boom you have an 8 team CUSA like league. Add in the non football schools like USF, Charlotte, and VCU and you have a clear alternate universe CUSA. ULM was out there too but La Tech would have made sure they got left out.
09-15-2017 09:06 PM
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Fighting Muskie Online
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Post: #76
RE: Why did the Great Midwest Conference form?
I'm still going to go with with Houston as the potential 12th member of the Big East football breakaway away league. The timing works out perfectly. The very same month that the Big East met and reached the compromise that kept the league together, March 1994, was the same month that the Big 12 formation announcement occurred so the Big East football schools would have been awar that Houston would be available, albeit obligated to remain in the SWC until the end of the 1995 season. I think Houston would have had much more appeal than Tulane at the time.

I like the idea of a Metro football league that begins in 1996 with USM, Tulane, Rice, SMU, TCU, Tulsa, and maybe ECU as members. UAB football joins in 1998 and USF in 2003. I think this group might have even been keen on adding UCF as a football affiliate when they move up as well.

Ark St, ULL, and LA Tech are tricky. On one hand I can see them as FB affiliates, and only FB affiliates to the Metro since its numbers would be relatively small but I also see members of that league saying no to the trio because at the time they were all pretty bad.

That trio's other option is the Big West. Utah St, Nevada, NMSU plus 1996 additions UNT, Idaho, and Boise St and those 3 as football affiliates would provide a modicum of stability for this group.

As for the WAC, I see a stable group of 12 schools from the mid 90s until the mid 00s. A Utah-BYU protected rivalry brings peace and harmony and no one organizes any airport meetings in Denver.

The '04-'05 ACC expansion is where all of this gets muddled.

The Big East football league loses Miami, VT, and BC. USF (as in real life) and TCU are the obvious replacements but I am hazy on the last one. UConn is maybe but would they likely would not have been attempting to transition a football team from FCS to FBS if they were still in the basketball-centric side of the split. Maybe doubling down on Florida with UCF is the answer despite the Golden Knights' disasterous 2004 campaign. this could be where Tulane gets in. Maybe they just boot Temple and add the two I mentioned and sit at 10.

Muddling at one level means muddling at everything below it so Metro football also takes a hit. But by this point there are plenty of options out there--raid the Big West for members like UNT, Ark St, ULL, and LA Tech, and a whole slew of upgraded programs and start ups like ULM, Middle Tenn, FAU, FIU, and Troy to pick from.

I also think by this point, with all those new schools in the Southeast in the mix, that Ark St, ULL, and LA Tech form Sunbelt football with those new programs and possibly some stolen Big West schools like UNT and New Mexico St (granted about 4-5 years after they did in real life)

Things aren't as sunny in the Big West, where Boise St, Idaho, Utah St, and Nevada would be left on an island looking for a life raft either in the form of a WAC invite (possible for Boise and Nevada) or SBC affiliate membership (probably the only realistic scenario for Utah St and Idaho)

I don't want to even begin to speculate where things end up after the 2010-2013 expansion moves. I think we see some of the same programs leaving for bigger leagues like Utah, TCU, Pitt, Syracuse, WVU, Louisville, and Rutgers. That sweeps the whole northeastern wing out of the BEFL (No UConn remember) so I'm guessing Temple never joins but aside from those two schools missing the BEFL looks a lot like the modern AAC.
09-16-2017 07:58 AM
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esayem Offline
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Post: #77
RE: Why did the Great Midwest Conference form?
Tulane was a superior basketball program in the mid-90's; the Green Wave won at least 20 games 5/6 seasons from 1991-92 to 1996-97 (they only won 18 in '93). Houston hoops wasn't impressive after 1992. Both football programs weren't very good during that time. I think the Big East schools go with Tulane due to basketball and the Metro schools bring along their long-time conference mate.
09-16-2017 09:39 AM
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