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2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
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CitrusUCF Offline
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2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
Had this jogged by a Facebook memory post that popped up today where in 2008, I had argued that Utah was the legitimate national champions, and that the MWC that year was better than at least 3 of the AQ conferences (Big East, ACC, and Pac-10).

Let's say that the Mountain West was going to get the AQ status. I believe they met 2 out of 3 criteria and fell short on the overall strength of conference because of some bad teams in the conference.

For the purpose of this scenario, let's say the Mountain West needs to add 3 teams to go to 12 teams and get the AQ bid. They have to be teams that had been winning at a good clip at that point in time.

Scenario Question 1. What three teams does the MWC add? The choices are more or less Boise, Hawaii, Fresno St., Houston, and Tulsa since they have to be teams that were doing well at the time.

With the MWC now at 12 teams, the Big East sitting at 8 is also forced into expansion.

Scenario Question 2 - The Big East is forced to expand to 12 teams. The Catholic schools want no part of it, so the option now is to create an all-sports conference of 12. Thus, four teams are added. Since this is an all-sports conference, at least some consideration needs to be given to basketball strength to keep Syracuse and UConn happy.

At this time, the Academies aren't prepared to take on a conference membership. No Texas schools are available, but everyone else in the eastern non-AQ conferences is available and willing.

Leading candidates would seem to be UCF, Memphis, ECU, Temple; but you have other options such as UMass, Southern Miss, Tulane, F_U, etc.

Who do you add for the MWC and Big East, and what are your proposed divisions?
01-08-2020 03:46 PM
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CitrusUCF Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
For reference, the conferences at the time were:

Mountain West - Air Force, BYU, Colorado State, New Mexico, San Diego St., TCU, UNLV, Utah, Wyoming
Big East - Cincinnati, Connecticut, Louisville, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, USF, Syracuse, West Virginia
01-08-2020 03:49 PM
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dbackjon Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
For the MWC, Boise is a no-brainer. Fresno and Houston would be the next picks, but Houston could go the Big East route (and be more acceptable to the Basketball schools)
01-08-2020 03:53 PM
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BePcr07 Online
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
The Mountain West was a terrific conference prior to the last major round of realignment. I would think the following may have happened (given your scenario and assuming the 2010-2011 realignment doesn't occur until afterward):

Catholic 7 splits off with the Big East name and we'll say the remaining schools reorganize as the Metro Conference. The Metro adds Central Florida, Memphis, and Temple as full members and Navy as football-only. Mountain West adds Boise St, Houston, and SMU.

Metro
North: Connecticut, Syracuse, Rutgers, Temple, Pittsburgh, West Virginia
South: Cincinnati, Louisville, Memphis, Central Florida, South Florida, Navy

Mountain West
West: San Diego St, UNLV, Boise St, Utah, BYU, Wyoming
East: Colorado St, Air Force, New Mexico, TCU, SMU, Houston

Mountain West gets an autobid to the Fiesta Bowl. Big 12's autobid shifts to the Sugar Bowl. Metro's autobid remains floating.
(This post was last modified: 01-08-2020 04:52 PM by BePcr07.)
01-08-2020 04:51 PM
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The Cutter of Bish Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
(01-08-2020 03:53 PM)dbackjon Wrote:  For the MWC, Boise is a no-brainer. Fresno and Houston would be the next picks, but Houston could go the Big East route (and be more acceptable to the Basketball schools)

Yeah, Houston to the MWC I can see, but it depends on whether TCU would support it. TCU and BYU probably don't bolt, but Utah still would if PAC was offered. Would that make four spots?

That changes what the Big East could do. Heck, for AQ/major status, I could see Navy picking up the phone and making a call to MWC for that. AQ was a known desirable for Navy then, and, from what I recall from that time, Navy said they had approached the Big East well before things finally got serious. They knew AQ would help with recruiting, but thought the Big East pre-Pitt and Syracuse departures was the one they were going to get.

Boise is automatic. Toss up between Tulsa and Fresno maybe? Again, Navy...maybe SMU?

For the Big East, especially if Houston, Tulsa, and SMU are on the MWC radar? I'd say whoever from that trio didn't go west. Navy's still there (they have to be). Tulane and UCF probably. Memphis and ECU get blocked by Louisville. Temple gets blocked by the schools who booted them out years earlier (Rutgers, Cuse, and WVU at least). If getting into Texas was so important, maybe Rice?
01-08-2020 05:13 PM
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Nerdlinger Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
(01-08-2020 05:13 PM)The Cutter of Bish Wrote:  Temple gets blocked by the schools who booted them out years earlier (Rutgers, Cuse, and WVU at least).

https://web.archive.org/web/200108281925...TEMP01.htm

Quote:Temple needed support from two of seven schools to remain a member. Several sources close to the situation have confirmed that Virginia Tech was the only school to side with the Owls. Pittsburgh abstained, which in effect turned into a thumbs down.
01-08-2020 07:51 PM
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
(01-08-2020 03:46 PM)CitrusUCF Wrote:  Had this jogged by a Facebook memory post that popped up today where in 2008, I had argued that Utah was the legitimate national champions, and that the MWC that year was better than at least 3 of the AQ conferences (Big East, ACC, and Pac-10).

Let's say that the Mountain West was going to get the AQ status. I believe they met 2 out of 3 criteria and fell short on the overall strength of conference because of some bad teams in the conference.

For the purpose of this scenario, let's say the Mountain West needs to add 3 teams to go to 12 teams and get the AQ bid. They have to be teams that had been winning at a good clip at that point in time.

Scenario Question 1. What three teams does the MWC add? The choices are more or less Boise, Hawaii, Fresno St., Houston, and Tulsa since they have to be teams that were doing well at the time.

With the MWC now at 12 teams, the Big East sitting at 8 is also forced into expansion.

Scenario Question 2 - The Big East is forced to expand to 12 teams. The Catholic schools want no part of it, so the option now is to create an all-sports conference of 12. Thus, four teams are added. Since this is an all-sports conference, at least some consideration needs to be given to basketball strength to keep Syracuse and UConn happy.

At this time, the Academies aren't prepared to take on a conference membership. No Texas schools are available, but everyone else in the eastern non-AQ conferences is available and willing.

Leading candidates would seem to be UCF, Memphis, ECU, Temple; but you have other options such as UMass, Southern Miss, Tulane, F_U, etc.

Who do you add for the MWC and Big East, and what are your proposed divisions?

I'm not sure why 12 teams would be required for AQ status when at the time the Big Ten, Big East, and Pac-10 all had fewer than 12. And if 12 is required, the MWC is going to lose their best teams just as in our timeline.
(This post was last modified: 01-08-2020 09:27 PM by Nerdlinger.)
01-08-2020 09:26 PM
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ken d Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
If the premise is that getting AQ status would have kept the best programs in the MWC from leaving, then I believe that premise is incorrect. I don't see any way that Utah turns down an invite to the PAC, or that TCU turns down an invite to the Big XII.

At that point, once the CFP replaces the BCS, the MWC is probably going to lose its status as well, just as the Big East would have. Eventually, the forces driving realignment likely result in something very close to what we have now.
01-09-2020 08:40 AM
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The Cutter of Bish Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
(01-09-2020 08:40 AM)ken d Wrote:  At that point, once the CFP replaces the BCS, the MWC is probably going to lose its status as well, just as the Big East would have. Eventually, the forces driving realignment likely result in something very close to what we have now.

I agree...but given the panic you had with the MWC, the impending demise of the WAC as a FBS conference, CUSA then getting picked apart, and that potential merger thing, throw this hypothetical in there, and I suspect it changes much of everything among the non-majors.

Where it really helps the Mountain West is that you probably don't see TCU leave until the Big XII invite (if they even get it?), BYU stays for sure, and Boise and SDSU aren't looking to chase AQ like they did. Air Force probably doesn't even bother. The stability in the conference probably comes at the cost of the further corrosion and decay of the Big East? Because now you have a smaller pot of teams to extract who aren't already at the same level as other Big East teams.

As time progresses, if you can retain more of the MWC longer, you probably don't get the "dilution" of it picking the WAC to death. At the very least, I would have to believe...
01-09-2020 08:54 AM
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Crayton Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
Part of the premise would have to be that P5 expansion is delayed a year. Then, even if Utah and TCU bolt, the rump MWC (incl. BYU?) would have an AQ through 2013, like the rump Big East/AAC.
01-09-2020 09:08 AM
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Gamecock Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
Yeah, this has always been a fascinating scenario to me. Boise is a no brainer. Houston makes a ton of sense to pair with TCU too. In the short term Nevada would have been a great fit because they were quite good in 2010 and went 13-1 with Kaepernick.

If they get AQ status that still probably does stop Utah from leaving. No telling what TCU decides to do, but they probably go to the Big 12 once the offer comes. Houston and BYU would've stuck around though and the MWC wouldn't have nearly the dead weight they do now.
01-09-2020 09:45 AM
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Wedge Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
There is no scenario here that would have prevented Utah, TCU, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, West Virginia, Rutgers, and Louisville from accepting invitations to join the conferences that they are in today.
01-09-2020 10:59 AM
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The Cutter of Bish Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
(01-09-2020 10:59 AM)Wedge Wrote:  There is no scenario here that would have prevented Utah, TCU, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, West Virginia, Rutgers, and Louisville from accepting invitations to join the conferences that they are in today.

Agreed. It's really how the current non-majors move and where they end up.

The only shift that sticks out to me are the Big XII backfills. If TCU isn't in-transit to the Big East, does the urgency to bolt from the Big East change? Are TCU and West Virginia moving into the Big XII, or could someone else, like Louisville or Cincinnati have snuck in instead? BYU? And the ripple effect on the ACC backfill...

To me, it has felt like the two or three schools who could not be in the major conferences today had things gone just slightly different is that trio of TCU, WVU, and UL.
01-09-2020 12:03 PM
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Crayton Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
With all the talk of mid-major alliances at that time, I wonder if the AAC and MWC could have worked out a Championship Game with an automatic bid to the new NY6. If the MW was AQ, it’d definitely change the Boise/SDSU saga. I also wonder if the MW would have pushed hard for 12 if they had AQ status with 10. And, after being cut to 8, if they would have entered into a Big East scheduling alliance which would blossom into a Championship Game after their AQs expired.
01-09-2020 12:14 PM
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
(01-09-2020 12:03 PM)The Cutter of Bish Wrote:  
(01-09-2020 10:59 AM)Wedge Wrote:  There is no scenario here that would have prevented Utah, TCU, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, West Virginia, Rutgers, and Louisville from accepting invitations to join the conferences that they are in today.

Agreed. It's really how the current non-majors move and where they end up.

The only shift that sticks out to me are the Big XII backfills. If TCU isn't in-transit to the Big East, does the urgency to bolt from the Big East change? Are TCU and West Virginia moving into the Big XII, or could someone else, like Louisville or Cincinnati have snuck in instead? BYU? And the ripple effect on the ACC backfill...

To me, it has felt like the two or three schools who could not be in the major conferences today had things gone just slightly different is that trio of TCU, WVU, and UL.

If no Louisville to the ACC, that implies no UMD to the Big Ten, and Rutgers joins Louisville with the power conference castoffs.
01-09-2020 01:33 PM
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
(01-09-2020 09:45 AM)Gamecock Wrote:  Yeah, this has always been a fascinating scenario to me. Boise is a no brainer. Houston makes a ton of sense to pair with TCU too. In the short term Nevada would have been a great fit because they were quite good in 2010 and went 13-1 with Kaepernick.

If they get AQ status that still probably does stop Utah from leaving. No telling what TCU decides to do, but they probably go to the Big 12 once the offer comes. Houston and BYU would've stuck around though and the MWC wouldn't have nearly the dead weight they do now.

Utah would turn down a Pac invite? Methinks not.
01-09-2020 01:35 PM
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
There were certainly moves that could have been made to make the MWC a deeper, stronger conference but none of those moves would prevent Utah and TCU from leaving for a massive pay bump
01-09-2020 02:01 PM
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
(01-09-2020 08:40 AM)ken d Wrote:  If the premise is that getting AQ status would have kept the best programs in the MWC from leaving, then I believe that premise is incorrect. I don't see any way that Utah turns down an invite to the PAC, or that TCU turns down an invite to the Big XII.

At that point, once the CFP replaces the BCS, the MWC is probably going to lose its status as well, just as the Big East would have. Eventually, the forces driving realignment likely result in something very close to what we have now.

Grant of Rights to get a new BCS level TV contract.

I built this out in NCAA 14...

MWC + UH, BSU, Tulsa
PAC + Colorado, Hawaii
B1G + Missouri (because I wanted to keep OU-Nebraska, but realistically, Nebraska still goes)
Big East + UCF, Memphis, Temple + ECU FB-only (debated UMass over ECU as part of a 12-team all-sports Northeastern focused conference)

Leaves the Big 12 at 10 looking for 2 teams. I assumed the GoR for everyone and that the Big 12 was the last to act because UT and OU were throwing their usual fit. UT adopts the DGAF mindset and they add SMU (thanks Big $$ boosters) and Tulane (academics + market). In UT’s mind, they could be in the Sun Belt and it’d be a power conference, so adding some private schools with some potential upside works given no other options.
01-09-2020 02:17 PM
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CitrusUCF Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
(01-09-2020 10:59 AM)Wedge Wrote:  There is no scenario here that would have prevented Utah, TCU, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, West Virginia, Rutgers, and Louisville from accepting invitations to join the conferences that they are in today.

The Big East would still be a power conference today if they had done as ESPN instructed.
01-09-2020 02:18 PM
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Wedge Offline
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RE: 2009ish realignment scenario what-if (Mountain West to AQ status)
(01-09-2020 02:18 PM)CitrusUCF Wrote:  
(01-09-2020 10:59 AM)Wedge Wrote:  There is no scenario here that would have prevented Utah, TCU, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, West Virginia, Rutgers, and Louisville from accepting invitations to join the conferences that they are in today.

The Big East would still be a power conference today if they had done as ESPN instructed.

Syracuse, Pitt, and WVU all left before the CFP was formed without the Big East as a "power" conference, and would have left regardless. Once all of those schools were gone, after Miami, VT, and BC had already left the Big East, there was less than zero chance that the important people with power and money would include Big East football in "the club".

And, "power conference" status is never enough by itself to prevent teams from switching conferences if they want to. Colorado, Nebraska, Texas A&M, Missouri, and Maryland are all examples of that fact.
01-09-2020 03:11 PM
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