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Sun Belt to Add Georgia Southern in 2014

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Sun Belt to Add Georgia Southern in 2014

Georgia Southern has accepted an invitation to join the Sun Belt Conference and will become a member in all sports beginning July 1, 2014.  The conference office announced the addition on Wednesday morning.

“Georgia Southern University has a rich history in athletics dating back to 1909 and has won six football national championships at the FCS level, so it brings a winning tradition to the Sun Belt Conference,” said Dr. Jack Hawkins, Jr., Chancellor of Troy University and President of the Sun Belt Conference Executive Committee. “More important, GSU is an outstanding public institution that is a good fit for our league—academically, athletically and geographically.”

Georgia Southern brings with it a highly successfully football program that will begin the process of transitioning to the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) immediately.  The 2014 Sun Belt football season will mark the debut of the Eagles in the league schedule and standings.  Additionally, the Eagles will be able to compete for the league championship in football for the 2014 season.  They will first be eligible to compete in a spot for a postseason bowl game come the 2015 season.

“This is a milestone day for Georgia Southern University and we are very excited to be joining the Sun Belt Conference,” said Georgia Southern President Dr. Brooks A. Keel.  “This decision was made with the long-term interest of our University in mind.  The Sun Belt will provide our student-athletes with an outstanding opportunity to compete at the highest level and we are excited to contribute to the conference's success both on and off the field.  I am equally excited about the opportunity that it will provide Georgia Southern and the more than 75,000 alumni that make up the Eagle Nation.”

During the past decade, Georgia Southern has shown growth in size and scope that has led to recognition by U.S. News and World Report as one of the top ten most popular universities in the nation.  The University offers 112 degree programs at the baccalaureate, master’s and doctoral levels through eight colleges, as well as a variety of online classes in business, education, liberal arts, science, technology and healthcare, including an array of advanced degree programs.

This past season, the Eagles reached the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) semifinals for the second-straight year in 2012, nearly reaching the national championship game for the ninth time. The Eagles finished 11-3 - the most wins for the program in a single season since 2002.  Georgia Southern has won six total FCS National Championships.

“There is no question that Georgia Southern helps strengthen our conference,” said Sun Belt Conference Commissioner Karl Benson.  “This is a program with strong athletic teams, a loyal fan base and administrators dedicated to higher learning.  Georgia Southern will be a great Sun Belt member.”

The Sun Belt Conference will contest the 2013 football season with eight members – Arkansas State, Georgia State, Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana-Monroe, South Alabama, Texas State, Troy and Western Kentucky University.  UALR and UT Arlington compete as non-football members.
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Re: Sun Belt to Add Georgia State in 2014

Rick - Your subject says GA State not GA Southern.
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Re: Sun Belt to Add Georgia Southern in 2014

cbboarder said

Rick - Your subject says GA State not GA Southern.

Thank you sir…corrected!
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Re: Sun Belt to Add Georgia Southern in 2014

No word on App. State yet? Or does CUSA swoop in and claim them to replace Tulsa instead of WKU? They really would prefer a CUSA invite and have been pretty public about it too!
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Re: Sun Belt to Add Georgia Southern in 2014

GeorgiaOwl said

No word on App. State yet? Or does CUSA swoop in and claim them to replace Tulsa instead of WKU? They really would prefer a CUSA invite and have been pretty public about it too!

There is a media call scheduled with the SBC tonight at 7:00 PM EST…would suspect that is when they will officially confirm it if legit.
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Re: Sun Belt to Add Georgia Southern in 2014

GeorgiaOwl said

No word on App. State yet? Or does CUSA swoop in and claim them to replace Tulsa instead of WKU? They really would prefer a CUSA invite and have been pretty public about it too!

WKU is the right invite in my opinion.

Teambeer is the most knowledgeable FAU sports fan I know, way smarter than me.
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Re: Sun Belt to Add Georgia Southern in 2014

Tulsa and ECU are said to have the full invite. WKU is said to be ready for CUSA. James Madison is said to replace WKU in the SBC. Only problem is, SBC is planning to take in JMU AND ONE MORE SCHOOL, which means they're expecting to lose more. A-State to MAC or CUSA? UL to CUSA? Will CUSA raid the SBC if UTEP goes to MtW?
A lot of questions right now. Nonetheless, the SBC looked solid when they took in GaSo and App St, but took two steps back by adding Idaho and NMSU. Idaho has ZERO upside and NMSU only works if they're a full member, not football only.

Some major moves will be made by the the tourney.

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Re: Sun Belt to Add Georgia Southern in 2014

Rick said

GeorgiaOwl said

No word on App. State yet? Or does CUSA swoop in and claim them to replace Tulsa instead of WKU? They really would prefer a CUSA invite and have been pretty public about it too!

There is a media call scheduled with the SBC tonight at 7:00 PM EST…would suspect that is when they will officially confirm it if legit.

App. St. says a news conference at 4 p.m. I wonder why such a time delay between Ga. Southern and App. St. for the same invite? Just a little strange to me.
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Re: Sun Belt to Add Georgia Southern in 2014

Time for Karl Benson to get to thier presser.

I have come here to chew bubble gum and kick @$$ and I'm out of bubble gum.

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Re: Sun Belt to Add Georgia Southern in 2014

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