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Big 12 expansion rumor article

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From The Sun Herald


Highlights:

"With the Big 12 possibly deciding to expand this summer, the American Athletic Conference is almost sure to feel the impact.

Dennis Dodd of CBSsports.com wrote a column this week that indicates Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby will nudge his conference toward expanding from 10 to 12 members by this summer. Oklahoma and West Virginia both want it to happen.

Cincinnati, UConn, Memphis, Houston and Central Florida are all AAC programs rumored to be receiving consideration as new Big 12 members.

BYU, which is independent, and the Mountain West's Colorado State appear to be the schools from the western states most likely to draw consideration.

Of all the programs listed, BYU would be the biggest catch for the Big 12. The Mormon school has a national following, but there would be some hoops to jump through when it comes to scheduling (BYU won't play games on Sunday).

..

When you consider all the factors, BYU and Cincinnati are the two programs that make the most sense for the Big 12.



If the AAC needs one spot to fill, that's where Southern Miss could come into the picture.



There are not many attractive options for the AAC in the event that it has to expand.

The most likely options for the AAC would be Southern Miss, Texas-San Antonio, Old Dominion, FAU, FIU, Marshall, UMass or Charlotte

Marshall has been the most successful football program over the last five years among the schools listed, but the odds may be stacked against it. Three of the AAC programs nearest to Marshall (Temple, UConn and football-only member Navy) have little in common with Marshall. While East Carolina may be fine with Marshall joining the conference, programs like UCF and South Florida would probably be cool to the idea. Marshall relies heavily on Florida talent to prop up its football program. FAU and FIU are both floundering when it comes to fan support and lost in the South Florida market.



FAU has a new football stadium, but other quality facilities are lacking on the Boca Raton campus.

FIU is in the large market of Miami, but that's the only trait that makes it a candidate. FIU's football and basketball facilities are among the worst in Division I and there is zero fan support."

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I remember at the beginning of last season the guys on Sirius College Football said UCF was a shoe-in for the Big 12, "the only thing that would prevent it is if they somehow went 0-12"

Ha.
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Lets suppose they take marshall or Southern Miss.

I know the team Id want in C-USA: Georgia Southern. It would be nice to have another team in driving distance with savannah not being that much further from Jacksonville.
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If it were me. Houston make the most sense to go to the Big 12. decent size media market, loyal fan base, really good facilites. then the AAC would take IMHO probably Marshall or Southern Miss. I lean towards Marshall. Again loyal fan base, spent money upgrading its facilities. To fill Marshall's spot I go with Voss. Georgia Southern would be a great fit for CUSA.
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I am less concerned about who is moving to the Big 12 and who will move into the AAC, and move into the CUSA, and more concerned about what WE need to do to move up in the future.

The sad reality is WE (alumni, fans, students, admin, etc) have to commit to basketball. We will never move up with that "gym."  If we decide we do not like basketball or they don't win enough to gain our support, then we are what we are. By not supporting basketball, we are not attractive, unless football becomes Boise State.

And being what we are is not the worst thing.  Maybe the solution is we move to FCS in football and A-Sun for basketball.  We would have a happier fan base.

If we are going to say we are committed to growing the program, things need to happen. We need to put a shovel in the ground for the Academic Center and we need to have a real plan in place for basketball. 

That all takes money.

And I am NOT advocating that we commit to basketball because I know we don't have the money.  Just saying that is what we have to do to move to the next level. 
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@FAUOWL…100 percent agree. I am not a basketball fan , but understand the importance of the program from an advancement point of view. On paper, we don't look very appealing right now.
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fauowl said

I am less concerned about who is moving to the Big 12 and who will move into the AAC, and move into the CUSA, and more concerned about what WE need to do to move up in the future.

The sad reality is WE (alumni, fans, students, admin, etc) have to commit to basketball. We will never move up with that "gym."  If we decide we do not like basketball or they don't win enough to gain our support, then we are what we are. By not supporting basketball, we are not attractive, unless football becomes Boise State.

And being what we are is not the worst thing.  Maybe the solution is we move to FCS in football and A-Sun for basketball.  We would have a happier fan base.

If we are going to say we are committed to growing the program, things need to happen. We need to put a shovel in the ground for the Academic Center and we need to have a real plan in place for basketball. 

That all takes money.

And I am NOT advocating that we commit to basketball because I know we don't have the money.  Just saying that is what we have to do to move to the next level. 
Posted On: Mar 12th 2016, 8:04 PM #355184



Local Owl said

@FAUOWL…100 percent agree. I am not a basketball fan , but understand the importance of the program from an advancement point of view. On paper, we don't look very appealing right now.
Posted On: Mar 12th 2016, 8:22 PM #355189

I have to agree too. I can understand the reasoning by the university administration not wanting to operate in the red on big name projects without it being fully paid for. God knows our government itself does enough of that. lol. But at the same time, maybe putting a shovel in the dirt and starting construction may be enough to shake some more donations loose. If you show that you are truly committed at doing this, sometimes actions do speak louder than words, and maybe that action is to start building now, and go out and truly campaign for it. Like hit up local companies like Garden of life in Palm Beach Gardens for maybe sponsoring the nutrition center, Planet or LA fitness for the weight room or equipment. Stuff like that. Going to get our ass kicked in football and hosting events like the SheBelieves Cup, Florida Launch and things like that are great but they pay the stadium debt. things like a modern day arena where possibly a conference tourney and other events can be held such as for those still devoted fans of WWE events like that a possible regional bid, and maybe hosting a Presidential debate in the future. But before basketball every student and alumni will scream well baseball is largely successful, when are they going to receive the love and get a new facility or renovations. Unfortunately in college athletics money talks. We dont have the money.
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Some of the conference expansion may depend on travel partners. Football doesn't need a travel partner because they play once a week. But basketball, soccer, volleyball, etc. play twice a week. For example, this year, FAU traveled to Texas twice: They did the UTEP and UTSA swing, and the Rice and UNT swing. UTSA's scheduled included playing at FAU and at FIU in the same week, and LA Tech and Southern Miss in the same week.

When my prior institution was evaluating a conference shift, travel partners was definitely a large part of the discussion - as I'm sure it was for the conference(s) considering us too. Travel is expensive and time-consuming and it's definitely a consideration for ADs and Conferences when looking at expansion.

Big XII Member West Virginia has to travel the longest to play someone: their closest school is Iowa State at over 800 miles away. Perhaps the Big XII will expand to find a travel partner for schools when they play WVU. If that's one theory that sticks, Marshall would make sense.

I don't see UCF being added unless the Big XII doesn't hold travel partners/distance in higher regard than perhaps other factors (TV market, student body size, alumni size, budgets, facilities, etc.)

I'm a proud lifetime member of the FAU National Alumni Association. Are you a member? Join now at www.faualumni.org.
Tradition in the Making, One Alum at a Time…
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One thing that will always make us attractive to better conferences is location. The tv market is among top 50 in the nation, it's beach weather year around and the university is easily accessible. It's funny how we're a prime target for conferences facing realignment because the cup board is so bare with "up and coming" programs. Not a bad spot to be in! 
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LawOwl said

It's funny how we're a prime target for conferences facing realignment because the cup board is so bare with "up and coming" programs.  
Posted On: Mar 13th 2016, 8:45 AM #355199

We are a prime target? I don't recall ever seeing our name mentioned as a prime target for any realignment. CUSA almost passed on us.
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