Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Conference USA: Is Bigger Better?

More talk of conference expansion, this time coming from Conference USA. East Carolina athletic director Terry Holland has been pushing an expansion concept that would increase the size of the league from 12 to 16 or possibly 18 teams that would be split into two divisions.

Thus far, there has been little support for the idea. Holland, in an email to Jack Bogaczky of the Charleston Daily Mail, said "that if you can't go back to eight or nine teams for the conference, then move ahead to eight- or nine-team divisions. Twelve is simply the wrong number in my opinion."

What teams might be targeted in an expansion? Bogaczky speculates that Western Kentucky, Middle Tennessee State and South Alabama, about to start its program with a major college goal of 2013, could be in the mix.


Anonymous said...

Brilliant idea. Two 9 team divisions so you never have to worry about scheduling, you can easily have a championship game in football, and imagine how big the basketball tournament would be each season with 14 - 18 schools attending.

Traveling to each of the 9 teams becomes really easy which in turns gives everyone an opportunity to see their teams MORE each season.

Do it.

greg6363 said...

Let's see now. You're a fading, mid-major conference that generates little TV money and your marquee programs have defected to the BCS. Your solution is to expand by adding schools with little name value and small fan bases. I'm sure the current members would be extremely happy sharing what little revenue remains from a ever shrinking financial pie.

Anonymous said...

Ok Greg, so what's the solution?

The goal would be to put together the best REGIONAL conference possible. By locking in 18 schools you never have to worry about scheduling, you can build rivalries, and "control" expenses.

Plus, since you mentioned TV money doesn't it make sense for a Fox Sports to pick up a conference that plays regionally? I would think Fox Sports South would love a conference that has 18 teams coming from their core broadcast area of West Virginia, North Carolina, Florida, Alabama, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas.

Plus when you mention "marquee programs" don't you really mean just Louisville? South Florida hasn't done much until the past 2 seasons, and Cincinnati is a joke. Please don't mention Depaul or Marquette either.