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JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
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Dukester Offline
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Post: #1
JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
My understanding these items are very much up in the air.

What do we know at this point?

What are the options?

It seems like usually they say these moves will take a couple years, but more times than not it gets worked out so it transitions the next school year.

While FBS may require a transition year, other sports would not.

Will JMU be able to compete for the CAA AQ for fall and spring sports?

What doe we know, and what are possibilities on these three topics?

1) Effective date of move.
2) Transition schedule for football (I'd love to host an FBS next year if possible)
3) CAA AQs this year

I know these topics are in and out on the rumor thread, but would like a thread to go to for updates on these major topics.
(This post was last modified: 11-03-2021 09:19 AM by Dukester.)
11-03-2021 09:11 AM
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DooX Offline
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Post: #2
RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
I think a lot of this will be up to the CAA and what they decide to do once it becomes official. Almost certainly we'll be immediately disqualified from any CAA conference championships and/or AQs going forward.

Football next year may be dicey. I assume we'd still play a CAA schedule for the most part, but wouldn't be eligible for playoffs. If CAA football kicks us out it'll be a piecemeal 'take-what-we-can-get' schedule. Regardless, we can do whatever we want with any OOC games, but I imagine we'll end up sticking with whatever has been scheduled. In 2023 my understanding is that we'd play a full SB conference slate, but would be bowl ineligible.

Since CAA football is a separate entity from the other sports, there may be a straightforward path to having everything except football join SB starting next year. I think the official calendar date for conference moves to be effective is July 1.
11-03-2021 10:15 AM
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JMURocks Offline
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Post: #3
RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
There's a lot of variables here, and probably more will become clear after we announce.

Here is some speculation based on what I've read/heard :

- Once JMU "officially" withdraws from the CAA they will become ineligible for CAA titles. Is it possible for us to announce without officially withdrawing? There probably are some contractual CAA things involved here on the timeline.

- 2022 would be our FCS transition year, where normally you are not eligible for postseason, could schedule FBS games if available. There has been some speculation that because of the Covid exemption on scholarships (ie: no FCS cap), JMU might be able to make a case for FCS playoffs in 2022. It seems unlikely, but not impossible.

- 2022 we may be able to join SBC for all sports other than football.

- 2023 we would play an SBC football schedule, and I believe could win the conference title, but could not play in postseason bowl games.
11-03-2021 10:24 AM
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Deez Nuts Offline
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Post: #4
RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
we haven't given notice to the CAA yet that we are leaving, so nothing has been confirmed when it comes to timelines. Maybe learn more next week?
11-03-2021 10:28 AM
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Deez Nuts Offline
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RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
Liberty set the benchmark for petitioning the NCAA for waivers. I'd like to see JMU pursue an NCAA waiver to skip the transition year (2022 season). If we have the scholarships already set, what's left to transition? Facilities - check. Promote coaches, and let's go.
(This post was last modified: 11-03-2021 10:31 AM by Deez Nuts.)
11-03-2021 10:31 AM
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Duke Dawg Offline
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Post: #6
RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
based on past history:

1) Next year (2022-23 academic year), all sports other than football will be in the Sun Belt. This current season is our last in the CAA

2) 2022 Football will be an FCS program but in purgatory. Ineligible for the playoffs and basically just playing a regular season

3) 2023 Football will be an FBS program but in purgatory. Ineligible for conference title and bowl games.

4) 2024 Football season - all systems go !
11-03-2021 10:35 AM
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JMad03 Offline
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Post: #7
RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
(11-03-2021 10:31 AM)Deez Nuts Wrote:  Liberty set the benchmark for petitioning the NCAA for waivers. I'd like to see JMU pursue an NCAA waiver to skip the transition year (2022 season). If we have the scholarships already set, what's left to transition? Facilities - check. Promote coaches, and let's go.

The covid year definitely helped speed up the scholarship limit. I will certainly be a bit bummed if next year is a transition year, but if that has to happen for us to be FBS, then so be it. I am hoping the admin can appeal to the NCAA and skip that transition year.

I am really hoping this year doesn't hurt us in regards to what the CAA does to us. I fear that we won't be eligible this year for anything, but I suppose this year could be seen as the transition year for all of our other sports.

And if we aren't eligible for CAA stuff, take that damn logo DOWN!
11-03-2021 10:39 AM
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DoubleDogDare Offline
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Post: #8
RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
Isn't the COVID impact on increased number of scholarships isolated to just this year? I believe everyone got an extra year, and if I'm thinking about this correctly, only the fall 2021 season would be impacted from a total scholarships basis. Once the super super seniors graduate this winter/spring, we are back to just 63 scholarships right?
11-03-2021 10:47 AM
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Deez Nuts Offline
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RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
(11-03-2021 10:47 AM)DoubleDogDare Wrote:  Isn't the COVID impact on increased number of scholarships isolated to just this year? I believe everyone got an extra year, and if I'm thinking about this correctly, only the fall 2021 season would be impacted from a total scholarships basis. Once the super super seniors graduate this winter/spring, we are back to just 63 scholarships right?

I thought everybody got an extra year, but it was up to the schools to come up with the funding (so in theory last year's frosh get to go through as freshmen again and can take up to 5 years).

What about FBS schools who already had 85 scholarships. Are they all hovering around 100 now?
11-03-2021 10:56 AM
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JMURocks Offline
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Post: #10
RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
(11-03-2021 10:35 AM)Duke Dawg Wrote:  based on past history:

1) Next year (2022-23 academic year), all sports other than football will be in the Sun Belt. This current season is our last in the CAA

2) 2022 Football will be an FCS program but in purgatory. Ineligible for the playoffs and basically just playing a regular season

3) 2023 Football will be an FBS program but in purgatory. Ineligible for conference title and bowl games.

4) 2024 Football season - all systems go !

Nope, we can win the conference title, see 2014 Georgia Southern team

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2014_Georg...tball_team

Quote:In their second year of the FCS to FBS transition, the Eagles were eligible for the conference championship; however, they were not bowl-eligible.

Also, while 2022 is officially an "FCS" season, we could schedule FBS games as an FCS team, it just may be hard to find/schedule those games.

Also, there is some question/debate about whether we might be able to qualify for FCS playoffs in 2022:


11-03-2021 10:58 AM
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DooX Offline
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Post: #11
RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
(11-03-2021 10:47 AM)DoubleDogDare Wrote:  Isn't the COVID impact on increased number of scholarships isolated to just this year? I believe everyone got an extra year, and if I'm thinking about this correctly, only the fall 2021 season would be impacted from a total scholarships basis. Once the super super seniors graduate this winter/spring, we are back to just 63 scholarships right?

That was my understanding (if we were staying FCS, anyway), but I don't know that I've seen it confirmed in print anywhere.

When it comes to the scholarships, it's worth keeping in mind that in normal years the 63 FCS scholarships can be partially divided among up to 85 different players. I think a 25% partial is the minimum. In FBS all 85 must be full. A tough thing in all of this is that there may be cases where a player makes sense for a 25%-50% FCS scholarship, but not 100% in FBS. I imagine part of the reason behind the transition period is to help schools work through this kind of thing. I think we'd want to have some extra in hand now that we can legitimately recruit as FBS and theoretically have access to higher caliber players.
11-03-2021 11:10 AM
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JMURocks Offline
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RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
(11-03-2021 11:10 AM)DooX Wrote:  
(11-03-2021 10:47 AM)DoubleDogDare Wrote:  Isn't the COVID impact on increased number of scholarships isolated to just this year? I believe everyone got an extra year, and if I'm thinking about this correctly, only the fall 2021 season would be impacted from a total scholarships basis. Once the super super seniors graduate this winter/spring, we are back to just 63 scholarships right?

That was my understanding (if we were staying FCS, anyway), but I don't know that I've seen it confirmed in print anywhere.

When it comes to the scholarships, it's worth keeping in mind that in normal years the 63 FCS scholarships can be partially divided among up to 85 different players. I think a 25% partial is the minimum. In FBS all 85 must be full. A tough thing in all of this is that there may be cases where a player makes sense for a 25%-50% FCS scholarship, but not 100% in FBS. I imagine part of the reason behind the transition period is to help schools work through this kind of thing. I think we'd want to have some extra in hand now that we can legitimately recruit as FBS and theoretically have access to higher caliber players.

Based on this NCAA post, it looks to me like 63 is the FCS cap next year:
https://www.ncaa.com/news/football/artic...hip-limits

Quote:The overall scholarship limit remains at 85 for the FBS and FCS. And, in the FCS, the limit of 63 scholarship equivalencies also remains in place.
11-03-2021 11:35 AM
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olddawg Online
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Post: #13
RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
(11-03-2021 11:10 AM)DooX Wrote:  
(11-03-2021 10:47 AM)DoubleDogDare Wrote:  Isn't the COVID impact on increased number of scholarships isolated to just this year? I believe everyone got an extra year, and if I'm thinking about this correctly, only the fall 2021 season would be impacted from a total scholarships basis. Once the super super seniors graduate this winter/spring, we are back to just 63 scholarships right?

That was my understanding (if we were staying FCS, anyway), but I don't know that I've seen it confirmed in print anywhere.

When it comes to the scholarships, it's worth keeping in mind that in normal years the 63 FCS scholarships can be partially divided among up to 85 different players. I think a 25% partial is the minimum. In FBS all 85 must be full. A tough thing in all of this is that there may be cases where a player makes sense for a 25%-50% FCS scholarship, but not 100% in FBS. I imagine part of the reason behind the transition period is to help schools work through this kind of thing. I think we'd want to have some extra in hand now that we can legitimately recruit as FBS and theoretically have access to higher caliber players.

Yup, back to 63 / 85 after this season, even though everyone gets an extra season of eligibility. Doesn't change the fact that there will be an entire extra class with which to divide those scholarships around (unless coaches decide to bring in no new players for this year's recruiting class). Tough and awkward decisions will have to be made.
11-03-2021 11:39 AM
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KickItToScotty Offline
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RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
Like Deez said, it should get a lot clearer once we officially announce. We'll then see the CAA reaction, which is probably already prepared and just waiting for an official announcement but it is Joey and the CAA so who knows. Mettlen, Madia, etc will also then be able to ask Bourne about these things and get real answers.

Going by previous move ups it should go something like:

2021 football - Normal except possibly being declared ineligible for the CAA championship and autobid.
2021-22 other sports - CAA schedule but likely ineligible for CAA championships and autobids.
2022 football - Either a CAA schedule while ineligible for the championship and the playoffs or an FCS independent schedule while ineligible for the playoffs.
2022-23 other sports - The biggest question mark imo, it's likely we could be Sun Belt here. The other additions seem to be pushing for joining at this point(plus 2022 football) and if the CAA declares us ineligible for championships it's likely either way that the Sun Belt would try to make it work bringing us in at that point.
2023 football - Sun Belt play but ineligible for a bowl, though we could still end up getting one if not enough full FBS teams end up making a bowl.
2023-24 other sports - Will definitely be Sun Belt at this point.
2024 football - Full FBS member of the Sun Belt, eligible for bowls.


With covid and the extra scholarships, there might be hope that we could either transition more quickly or remain eligible for the playoffs next year. Like others have said, the only year I've seen it clearly laid out that going beyond the scholarship limit is allowed is this year. All athletes though, not just seniors, get an extra year of eligibility so maybe the limits don't go back in to effect yet either but I haven't seen that clearly stated officially. Sportswriters sure seem to talk as if the limits aren't coming back to normal that quickly. Either kind of exception for next year seems unlikely regardless, but there's definitely more of an argument to be made now that there ever has been any other time.

Edit: So with what JMU Rocks posted there, does seem clear that it's back to 85/63 next year which it seems like Sam Herder and others aren't aware of. That would definitely kill any hope of staying eligible for the playoffs, the only hope for anything out of the ordinary would be cutting out the transition year and joining Sun Belt football in 2022. That seems very unlikely imo but would be nice if we could pull that off.
(This post was last modified: 11-03-2021 11:43 AM by KickItToScotty.)
11-03-2021 11:41 AM
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JMU_Rocks! Offline
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RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
What happens with respect to the CAA, may also hinge on other moves in the conference. If W&M & UR consider leaving as well - they might be voting in a way that protects their future interests too.

For football, I think getting as many FBS pay games as soon as possible is the first priority. Then lining up interesting FCS match-ups at home for 2022. Lehigh, Lafayette, Colgate, VMI, several HBCU, Georgetown, Holy Cross, Fordham, Davidson - might be options. We're better off using the full transition period for football to recruit with a FBS mentality and also understanding that we can take transfers and red-shirts to manage our roster. For instance, would Wells play 3 to 4 games against FBS competition and use 2022 for a red-shirt - giving him a chance to show his stuff against the highest level competition possible. I wonder if Ga Southern might have won early at the expense of a more sustainable success level - I know they had other issues as well. It just seems like rushing the transition could bite us later.
11-03-2021 05:42 PM
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jmudukes001 Offline
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RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
Fingers crossed that we can somehow still be eligible for a CAA title this March in men’s basketball and the resulting NCAA berth. We actually have a realistic chance of making the NCAAs and also not being a 16th seed play-in team.

Hopefully at the worst, no basketball conference title or NCAAs for one season.

Kind of a downer on the season about to start if we know the NCAAs are not an option. Obviously not in the big picture though. Hopefully players are ok with it.
(This post was last modified: 11-03-2021 06:36 PM by jmudukes001.)
11-03-2021 06:36 PM
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NJDuke97 Offline
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RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
What do we know? 1) Jeff Bourne has stressed that the welfare of their student athletes is at the top of JMUs priority list 2) JMU has a culture where they care a great deal about all of their programs being able to compete for titles and nationally 3) JMU has been a long standing CAA member and this is a decision that is not a surprise nor has been arrived at overnight 4) JMU is scheduled to host several CAA championships this year

My expectation is that something can be worked out where JMU continues to compete for conference championships this year and moves to the Sun Belt next year. Back when the other schools left were the exit penalties as steep as they now are? That may have been the pound of flesh back then and given all the the above considerations and the higher exit penalties this go around my hope and expectation is that JMU will not be adversely effected this year. The winter sports season has almost started and there is only one season after that. It would be pretty lame if the Caa dinged JMU outside of the exit penalties $ on the way out the door. JMU can still help the conference make $ and get exposure nationally the remainder of this year.
11-03-2021 06:47 PM
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jmudukes001 Offline
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RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
Never mind my above post…

CAA to ban JMU from league championships

https://richmond.com/sports/college/caa-...e-breaking
(This post was last modified: 11-03-2021 06:51 PM by jmudukes001.)
11-03-2021 06:50 PM
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KickItToScotty Offline
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RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
Yeah not surprised. CAA sucks.
11-03-2021 06:59 PM
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JMU08 Online
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RE: JMU Transition to Sunbelt/FBS/CAA AQs
I mean, it's the rule of the CAA that once we announce we're leaving we're ineligible. The only way to overturn it is to get the other ADs to vote to overturn, which makes no sense. The chances to get an autobid for everyone else goes up when we're eliminated. Very unfortunate for our players, but this is to be expected.
11-03-2021 07:04 PM
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