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Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
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quo vadis Offline
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Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
When FAU announced they were leaving the Belt for C-USA in November, 2012, a Miami newspaper columnist called the SBC a "sinking ship" and said C-USA was clearly a better league.

But fast-forward seven years, and the SBC has clearly been the better conference on the field the past few years, and a glance at the C-USA and SBC media deals and bowl deals shows little if any difference. In 2012, C-USA had six bowl ties while the SBC had only two. But these days C-USA has 7 (for 14 teams) while the Belt has 5 for 10 teams, the same ratio.

So is it fair to say the move hasn't been the step up that FAU and FIU thought it would be?
11-13-2020 11:20 PM
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Native Georgian Offline
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
Based on the information available in 2012, it was an understandable decision to leave the Sun Belt for C-USA. But with the advantage of hindsight, it has turned out to be a purely lateral move, at best. And if you check back in another 6-8 years or so, it may look worse than lateral.

It’s interesting to me that C-USA picked FIU as part of its first wave of expansion (May 4, 2012) and that FAU was picked as part of the second wave (Nov. 29, 2012), but FAU has emerged as the much stronger program in football.
11-13-2020 11:30 PM
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EigenEagle Offline
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
You could say that for MTSU, WKU, and North Texas as well.

It's laughable a bunch of presidents running DI schools thought it was smart to expand based on markets.
11-13-2020 11:49 PM
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Native Georgian Offline
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-13-2020 11:49 PM)EigenEagle Wrote:  You could say that for MTSU, WKU, and North Texas as well.
Yes.

Quote:It's laughable a bunch of presidents running DI schools thought it was smart to expand based on markets.
I’m sure there are some exceptions. But just by-and-by, College/university presidents do not know much about sports and do not need to know much about sports. They make these kind of decisions based on the advice they are given by paid consultants, the school’s athletic director and senior staff, and personal family/friends.

I’m curious, EE: do you think the Belt would have any interest in adding Marshall+Liberty? Move Troy to the western division. That would be 12 for football and 14 for hoops. Good idea?
11-14-2020 12:00 AM
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BePcr07 Offline
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
The Sun Belt is the better football product today. CUSA is the better basketball product today. Things change. From a recency standpoint, the mini Florida twins have been underwhelming. I’m not sure being in the Sun Belt would do more than create more regional games which might develop recruiting in the region enhancing the on-field play.
11-14-2020 12:40 AM
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UTEPDallas Offline
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-13-2020 11:49 PM)EigenEagle Wrote:  You could say that for MTSU, WKU, and North Texas as well.

It's laughable a bunch of presidents running DI schools thought it was smart to expand based on markets.

North Texas is fine in C-USA. They’ll still choose C-USA over the current Sun Belt every time. Just look at the schools they’re surrounded with in C-USA West.

These things are cyclical. People forget once a Sun Belt school gets good, a P5 will get their coach and even a upper G5 like Boise State and Cincinnati and it’s back to square one. The Sun Belt might be good lately but that doesn’t mean they won’t have down years. Even P5 conferences have down years. Just look at the ACC and Pac-12 lately.
11-14-2020 01:21 AM
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
I think CUSA ultimately did the Sunbelt a favor. The Sunbelt historically has been the bottom dweller. Whenever alignments happened, you could count on the raids flowing down thru the SB and then the Sunbelt backfilling to stay afloat. The last raids however produced interesting results. Initially it looked like the same status quo. Everyone was looking at markets at the time and The sunbelt did as well. They pulled in Georgia State and Texas State. But then the next round quickly came along and the Sunbelt deviated and chose history over markets. They may have wanted James Madison first, but the feeling wasn’t mutual. In come Georgia Southern and App State. Georgia Southern immediately came in and won the Sunbelt, before going thru coaching changes and a bad period. App State started slow but then picked up the pieces and haven’t really looked back. The belt the. Kicked out more dead weight in Idaho and NMSU and added Coastal Carolina. Every conference has a bottom, but the sunbelt middle and top are very tight now, and year over year predicting who wins it gets tighter as well. This year the top 3 teams are still a toss up. Coastal looks legitimately good this year. ULL and App also look good and it’s possible for 30% of the conference to be ranked at the same time in a few weeks. Next is maybe Georgia Southern that has only lost 2 games, both to ranked conference foes (ULL was a last second heart breaker). Having 1 team ranked in 2012 was a distant dream.
(This post was last modified: 11-14-2020 02:12 AM by EagleNationRising.)
11-14-2020 02:10 AM
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balanced_view Offline
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-14-2020 01:21 AM)UTEPDallas Wrote:  
(11-13-2020 11:49 PM)EigenEagle Wrote:  You could say that for MTSU, WKU, and North Texas as well.

It's laughable a bunch of presidents running DI schools thought it was smart to expand based on markets.

North Texas is fine in C-USA. They’ll still choose C-USA over the current Sun Belt every time. Just look at the schools they’re surrounded with in C-USA West.

These things are cyclical. People forget once a Sun Belt school gets good, a P5 will get their coach and even a upper G5 like Boise State and Cincinnati and it’s back to square one. The Sun Belt might be good lately but that doesn’t mean they won’t have down years. Even P5 conferences have down years. Just look at the ACC and Pac-12 lately.

Sports is cyclical, particularly in a G5 conference. where the Sun Belt is standing out is the conference has multiple teams that have momentum to keep the positive groove going. Think of a good conference and it will include several good teams. when one team goes through a few down years it dont hurt the conference. It feels like the Sun Belt is here to stay as a good conference.

To both of our points, the Sun Belt just lost 3 coaches to P5 programs in the last 2 years, but now have 2 ranked AP teams, that are different than the 2 teams that lost those coaches.
(This post was last modified: 11-14-2020 10:19 AM by balanced_view.)
11-14-2020 10:15 AM
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HawaiiMongoose Offline
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
When the realignment wave hit in the early 2010s the Sun Belt was fortunate to be in a part of the country where there were FCS schools eager to move up. Georgia State, Georgia Southern, Appalachian State and Coastal Carolina were ambitious. If Montana, Montana State, Sacramento State and Portland State had been equally ambitious WAC football might have survived.
11-14-2020 10:39 AM
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quo vadis Offline
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-14-2020 10:39 AM)HawaiiMongoose Wrote:  When the realignment wave hit in the early 2010s the Sun Belt was fortunate to be in a part of the country where there were FCS schools eager to move up. Georgia State, Georgia Southern, Appalachian State and Coastal Carolina were ambitious. If Montana, Montana State, Sacramento State and Portland State had been equally ambitious WAC football might have survived.

That's a good point. When C-USA backfilled their Big East/AAC losses by raiding the Sun Belt, the Sun Belt was able to get some replacements from FCS that have blossomed nicely for them.

BTW, could C-USA backfill from the Sun Belt today? I don't think so.
(This post was last modified: 11-14-2020 12:26 PM by quo vadis.)
11-14-2020 12:26 PM
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-14-2020 12:40 AM)BePcr07 Wrote:  The Sun Belt is the better football product today. CUSA is the better basketball product today. Things change. From a recency standpoint, the mini Florida twins have been underwhelming. I’m not sure being in the Sun Belt would do more than create more regional games which might develop recruiting in the region enhancing the on-field play.

Actually almost all the SB schools that moved were doing pretty poorly in football. It was like they picked the worst football programs. But of course, what they did was pick the schools with the largest budgets, pretty much right down the line.
And they are mostly doing better in football since the move.

At the time, the CUSA had much better coverage and TV contract dollars. But with the change in membership, that went away.

The teams that are unhappy in CUSA are schools that never should have been invited in the first place, former Sun Belt basketball schools with new football programs, ODU and UNCC.
11-14-2020 12:33 PM
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-14-2020 12:33 PM)bullet Wrote:  
(11-14-2020 12:40 AM)BePcr07 Wrote:  The Sun Belt is the better football product today. CUSA is the better basketball product today. Things change. From a recency standpoint, the mini Florida twins have been underwhelming. I’m not sure being in the Sun Belt would do more than create more regional games which might develop recruiting in the region enhancing the on-field play.

Actually almost all the SB schools that moved were doing pretty poorly in football. It was like they picked the worst football programs. But of course, what they did was pick the schools with the largest budgets, pretty much right down the line.
And they are mostly doing better in football since the move.

At the time, the CUSA had much better coverage and TV contract dollars. But with the change in membership, that went away.

The teams that are unhappy in CUSA are schools that never should have been invited in the first place, former Sun Belt basketball schools with new football programs, ODU and UNCC.

Right - that’s why I said the SBC is better in football and CUSA is better in basketball.
11-14-2020 12:35 PM
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Native Georgian Offline
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-14-2020 12:26 PM)quo vadis Wrote:  BTW, could C-USA backfill from the Sun Belt today? I don't think so.
Agreed. Based on the current alignment, Texas State is the only Sun Belt member that would benefit from switching to C-USA. And (best I can tell) C-USA doesn’t want Texas State.
11-14-2020 12:40 PM
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-14-2020 12:33 PM)bullet Wrote:  
(11-14-2020 12:40 AM)BePcr07 Wrote:  The Sun Belt is the better football product today. CUSA is the better basketball product today. Things change. From a recency standpoint, the mini Florida twins have been underwhelming. I’m not sure being in the Sun Belt would do more than create more regional games which might develop recruiting in the region enhancing the on-field play.

Actually almost all the SB schools that moved were doing pretty poorly in football. It was like they picked the worst football programs. But of course, what they did was pick the schools with the largest budgets, pretty much right down the line.
And they are mostly doing better in football since the move.

At the time, the CUSA had much better coverage and TV contract dollars. But with the change in membership, that went away.

The teams that are unhappy in CUSA are schools that never should have been invited in the first place, former Sun Belt basketball schools with new football programs, ODU and UNCC.

Southern Miss, UAB and Rice were/are unhappy because they got "left behind".

UTEP is unhappy that MWC won't save them from their Mountain Timezone island.

CUSA at-large is unhappy MWC won't remove the Mountain Timezone Island and all its dead weight.

MT and WKU are happy to be aligned with traditional southeastern G5 basketball schools and a national football brand in Marshall all very close by.

Inviting the F_U's all sports was insane, should have been football only. It unnecessarily stretched the oly footprint and has made nobody happy (yay travel partners?).

The Eastern schools are confused as to why an incompetent group of "everything is fine" administrators in Dallas, TX is charting their destinies.
11-14-2020 01:52 PM
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ESE84 Offline
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-14-2020 02:10 AM)EagleNationRising Wrote:  I think CUSA ultimately did the Sunbelt a favor. The Sunbelt historically has been the bottom dweller. Whenever alignments happened, you could count on the raids flowing down thru the SB and then the Sunbelt backfilling to stay afloat. The last raids however produced interesting results. Initially it looked like the same status quo. Everyone was looking at markets at the time and The sunbelt did as well. They pulled in Georgia State and Texas State. But then the next round quickly came along and the Sunbelt deviated and chose history over markets. They may have wanted James Madison first, but the feeling wasn’t mutual. In come Georgia Southern and App State. Georgia Southern immediately came in and won the Sunbelt, before going thru coaching changes and a bad period. App State started slow but then picked up the pieces and haven’t really looked back. The belt the. Kicked out more dead weight in Idaho and NMSU and added Coastal Carolina. Every conference has a bottom, but the sunbelt middle and top are very tight now, and year over year predicting who wins it gets tighter as well. This year the top 3 teams are still a toss up. Coastal looks legitimately good this year. ULL and App also look good and it’s possible for 30% of the conference to be ranked at the same time in a few weeks. Next is maybe Georgia Southern that has only lost 2 games, both to ranked conference foes (ULL was a last second heart breaker). Having 1 team ranked in 2012 was a distant dream.

You make a great point about the Sunbelt improving itself by tightening its footprint and cutting two programs. This option does not seem available to C-USA.
11-14-2020 03:08 PM
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ESE84 Offline
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-14-2020 12:40 PM)Native Georgian Wrote:  
(11-14-2020 12:26 PM)quo vadis Wrote:  BTW, could C-USA backfill from the Sun Belt today? I don't think so.
Agreed. Based on the current alignment, Texas State is the only Sun Belt member that would benefit from switching to C-USA. And (best I can tell) C-USA doesn’t want Texas State.

I’ll argue that Louisiana would also take a hard look at C-USA if UAB, Southern Miss, Louisiana Tech and Rice are all still there.
11-14-2020 03:12 PM
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
I think that C-USA erred when they added start up programs instead established FBS programs.

Had they added ULL, Ark St, and Troy instead of UTSA, Charlotte, and ODU that C-USA would be a lot stronger.

C-USA expanded with markets in mind but for the most part their expansion schools have underperformed and the old guard schools, particularly UTEP, have deeply slumped.

SBC expansion schools App St and Georgia Southern have surpassed all expectations while Coastal Carolina now seems to be having their breakout year. Existing members ULL, Ark St, and Troy are all still performing well too.

FAU and FIU are programs with low ceilings. Miami is a pro market and those interested in the college game have the famed Hurricanes to follow.
11-14-2020 03:23 PM
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-14-2020 03:23 PM)Fighting Muskie Wrote:  I think that C-USA erred when they added start up programs instead established FBS programs.

Had they added ULL, Ark St, and Troy instead of UTSA, Charlotte, and ODU that C-USA would be a lot stronger.

C-USA expanded with markets in mind but for the most part their expansion schools have underperformed and the old guard schools, particularly UTEP, have deeply slumped.

SBC expansion schools App St and Georgia Southern have surpassed all expectations while Coastal Carolina now seems to be having their breakout year. Existing members ULL, Ark St, and Troy are all still performing well too.

FAU and FIU are programs with low ceilings. Miami is a pro market and those interested in the college game have the famed Hurricanes to follow.

Mostly agree with you. ULL, Arkansas St. and Troy were all doing pretty well in football at the time.
11-14-2020 03:44 PM
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Fighting Muskie Online
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
West: UTEP, UNT, Rice, LA Tech, ULL, Ark St, USM
East: Marshall, WKU, MTSU, UAB, Troy, FAU, FIU

The leftover Sunbelt and WAC schools can sort things out and pick up the FCS upgrades
11-14-2020 04:57 PM
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RE: Has FAU and FIU moving from the SBC to C-USA been a Bust?
(11-14-2020 04:57 PM)Fighting Muskie Wrote:  West: UTEP, UNT, Rice, LA Tech, ULL, Ark St, USM
East: Marshall, WKU, MTSU, UAB, Troy, FAU, FIU

The leftover Sunbelt and WAC schools can sort things out and pick up the FCS upgrades

If 14 from CUSA/SBC, this would be mine:

Sun Belt
West: Arkansas St, Louisiana Tech, North Texas, Rice, Southern Miss, UAB, UL Lafayette
East: Appalachian St, Florida Atlantic, Georgia Southern, Marshall, Middle Tennessee St, Troy, Western Kentucky

CUSA
West: New Mexico St*, South Alabama, Texas St, UL Monroe, UTEP, UTSA
East: Charlotte, Coastal Carolina, Florida International, Georgia St, Liberty*, Old Dominion
* Football-only
* Non-football members: Arkansas - Little Rock, Texas - Arlington
11-14-2020 05:33 PM
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