here we go again? Conference reorganization It’s back, but will it flow this time?
a year ago, Texas And the Oklahoma They announced their plans to join the Securities and Exchange Commission, but despite all the drama, only Big 12 was affected at the Power 5 level. However, in the group of five, three major motion conferences tackled, while the other two delved deeply into the possibility of scaling. The streaming effect was enormous.
“It’s been clear for a while, and this is the most specific iteration, that geography doesn’t really matter anymore,” said Mike Aresco, commissioner of the American Mathematical Conference. “This is a new world.”
Aresco knows about tournaments from coast to coast. When he took over the management of the Big East, the conference planned to add Boise State And the San Diego State As members only football, a plan that eventually collapsed when the league was selected. But now, with moves like this at the Power 5 level, it appears the Big Ten and SEC are on the cusp of taking all the valuable real estate.
Are we heading towards unification? Yes,” Aresco said. “We may have been moving toward it for a while, but it was gradual. Now it seems even more surprising.”
The first thing to know up front is that every Team 5 will accept the Power 5 invitation. This was the case a year ago, when Cincinnati, Houston And the UCF He went to the Big 12, which is always the case. Whether it’s a Pac-12 watered down or another league, if there’s a chance to move to “Autonomous 5,” they’ll take it. So yeah, San Diego and Boise want a Pac 12. So does everyone else.
But other scenarios must be resolved before this affects the G5. This includes Big 12 / Buck 12 Staring out and potential Notre Dame resolution. A group of 5 schools is not the first choice in these situations. Can a bunch of buck schools 12 big flaw 12? Could the Pac-12 form an arrangement with the ACC to remain complete? Could the Pac-12 ever exist? You can’t quite guess Who will add the Pac-12 If you don’t first know who’s still in Pac-12.
“We are in a situation where we have to let a few dominoes fall,” one of the five m groups said.
A group of 5 schools are ready to submit their bids, just as they were a year ago. Conferences are ready too, in case any schools fall on them. This is where things stand with the major players.
Television eyeballs are driving the reorganization more than anything else, and Boise State leads the group of five remaining in this category. She carved out with Fox in a Mountain West TV deal, a deal that dates back to ESPN when the Broncos stuck with Mountain West instead of joining Big East a decade ago. It is worth about $1.8 million, plus about $4 million that was paid to the rest of the Mountain West area (other than Hawaii).
Boise State remains nationally known for its football success in the past two decades, and its future non-conference schedules are packed with matches against Power 5 and AAC, making it a valuable roster. Still a great brand. And in April, the school revealed a new master plan for renovations to its athletics facilities. If a group of five team is pulled, the Broncos remain the first choice.
But Pac-12 presidents are known to really value academics, and Boise State doesn’t even rank in the top 300 in US News & World Report’s university rankings. It’s also unknown if Boise State will actually increase TV payments to every school in the Power 5 league, though it’s possible that any G5 school could receive less than a full quota as part of a move. If Big 12 and Pac-12 don’t take from each other, Big 12 could be another fit for Boise State if it expands again, pairing up with BYU as travel partners, but that’s still several steps away. The future of the Pac-12 must be worked on first.
San Diego State
The Aztecs have had a lot of football wins over the Pac-12 programs in recent years, including a 7-2 record since 2016. They also have a strong men’s basketball program. They would be a perfect fit in that sense. The school will also award the Pac-12 flag in Southern California again after the two Los Angeles schools split. A new football stadium finally opened this year, paired with an expansion of the campus.
“We’ve invested in our programs, the academic institution is doing really well,” said one SDSU source. “We feel ready to take the next step.”
But again with the Pac-12, academics can play a role. SDSU ranks 148 in the US News & World Report rankings, and is part of the California State University system, rather than the more popular University of California system (which includes Cal and UCLA). SDSU is also unlikely to add to TV payments for each school in the league, although it may require a smaller share as well. Again, it could depend on the rest of the Pac-12.
SMU He hasn’t been well positioned for the move since the days of the Southwest Conference, with the football program back on track as one of the top teams in AAC. While the Big 12 is a more natural fit, the Mustangs were already outdone last year, and the Pac-12 could give them a better chance. For the Pac-12, SMU will provide a foothold in Texas, specifically Dallas. This would help the league get into the games’ central time zone windows and help with recruiting in a fast-growing country and city.
SMU also meets the academic bar as a private school ranked #68 in US News & World Report rankings. In addition, the school has a lot of money ($ 2 billion endowment) and rich donors. In January, the school announced plans to renovate the $100 million final district complex and a $50 million endowment. The Mustang hasn’t had its national moments like the New Year’s Six Cup, so they want upcoming conventions to know what’s already there.
One source said, “We don’t want the dust to settle and then have a conversation with someone who has a say in the decision and they say, ‘Oh, I wish I knew that about SMU.'” But we need a little more turbulence to give us a chance to rise.”
As with everyone else on this list, it’s hard to tell what effect the SMU will have on TV payments, although the central time zone can help.
Fresno State It has already started its public showing, posting on Twitter that the Central California region ranks as the 15th best TV market. There’s a successful football program you can count on, one that beat UCLA at the Rose Bowl last fall and played in a football game in 17 of the past 23 seasons.
– Fresno State Bulldogs (FSAthletics) 2 July 2022
“We’re looking forward to making sure we’re recognized,” a source in Fresno said. “Whether it’s reaffirming that for our local community or reminding people who might not remember where Fresno is and making sure they realize who we are too.”
But the school is in the California state system mentioned above and is ranked #213 nationally in the US News & World Report rankings. The facilities have become outdated and have been a priority in fundraising, which could hurt the cause.
This will be a market play, like UNLV He has not had any recent success in football or men’s basketball, but he has appeared in conversations with several administrators. Las Vegas has become a major sports city, including the host city for the Pac-12 Championship game. There is money linked to the UNLV that would be interested in bringing the rebels into a larger conference.
But besides the lack of success and TV payout status, UNLV ranks 249th in US News & World Report rankings. It wouldn’t be the best option, but if Pac-12 loses a number of schools and decides to refill many G5 schools, UNLV may play its part.
The most interesting part may come from the possible reorganization at the conference level. A year ago, it looked like the Big 12 could collapse, with Mountain West and AAC there to pick up some pieces. It didn’t, and AAC instead lost three schools to the Big 12.
The original possibility could be in play again. If Pac-12 loses four or six more schools in other conferences, this could be the end of the conference. It’s hard to know what stanford Or Cal will do, but Washington State And the Oregon They could be potential additions to Mountain West in this scenario.
A source in Mountain West said the league will offer familiarity and stability to those schools if the situation arises. Both are in the MWC footprint. Washington State is a five-hour drive from Boise. MWC already has a case to make as the best G5 league when the reorganization dust settles. Adding two Pac-12 schools will only improve that.
“Any conference would be very lucky if either of these two institutions fell their way,” another MWC source said. “They have good leadership.”
The West Mountains had the opportunity to expand last fall, after Boise State, SDSU, air forces And the Colorado AAC refused. Some of the people at the conference wanted to be proactive and to expand, maybe even get into Texas. Instead, it stayed at 12. A source at the time said Fox told the conference it would not increase broadcast television payments to each school if the university added any of the potential options from C-USA or AAC. That could pay off if he stays together during this latest round of reorganization. But if Mountain West loses one or two teams like Boise State or San Diego State (or more), there aren’t many natural alternatives, with most of them going to AAC.
The MWC once temporarily lost Boise State and San Diego State to the Great East a decade ago and plans to merging with USA conference. Schools returned with the collapse of the Big East and the MWC has thrived ever since. The league itself was a breakaway from the WAC. It has a history of change, but also of survival.
The American had a hit last year, adding six Conference USA schools after losing three to the top 12 (and being rejected by the fourth Mountain West team). Just Memphis And SMU appears to be potential Power 5 targets this time around if patches open.
But the AAC, too, might be interested in Washington State and Oregon if the Pac-12 collapses. AAC actually looked at the Pacific time zone last year with its Mountain West goals.
“If they were to come to the United States, which might be a stretch, I think the Americans would be excited,” an AAC source said.
An American can offer higher television payments. Mountain West pays about $4 million per school as part of the Fox/CBS deal, while the remaining eight original AAC schools earn more than $6 million from the ESPN deal, both of which could increase with the remnants of Pac-12 (the six new ones) AAC schools will get a stake less).
“Ultimately, the American has a chance of staying stable and/or potentially picking up a team or two if everything collapses,” the source said.
It’s hard to see the G5’s hefty set-up like last year’s because there isn’t a lot of movement left. All this happened last year.
The belt of the sun went against the trend and bowed to regionalism and competition in the addition of Miss South, MarshallAnd the Old Dominion and James Madison. AAC added the value I found from C-USA. MAC actually passed on to WKU when MTSU chose not to leave the league. The USA Conference still needed to add more schools from Independents or FCS at some point, but that’s been the case for a while.
Not many obvious moves left. Right now, there are only a few possibilities that can affect the group of five, and it still requires some dominoes to get there. The most impactful change would be if Pac-12 lost six or eight schools but survived and tried to add substitutions. Then everything will be on the table.
“Conferences don’t tend to fall apart,” one of the sources said. “They tend to keep adding schools if they can make themselves viable.”
It is also possible that both Pac-12 and Big 12 will remain in place. Nobody knows yet what will happen at the Power 5 level.
A handful of the group’s five teams have their eyes once again on the elusive Power 5 call. For now, they’re hoping to get a chance to make their case and wait to see what happens next.
(Photo: Brian Lawson/USA Today)
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