March 26, 2013

Sun Belt Conference Adds 4 Schools: The Sun Belt Conference is adding Appalachian State, Georgia Southern, Idaho and New Mexico State this week, according to reports. They replace North Texas, Florida Atlantic and Middle Tennessee, which left for Conference USA. Idaho and New Mexico State will be football-only members. The top-ranked team among five conferences -- Sun Belt, CUSA, Mountain West, MAC and the needs-a-name half of the Big East -- will get a berth in the new playoff.

posted by rcade to football at 10:11 AM - 4 comments

I was happy when North Texas got into CUSA, but their new conference is filling up with teams from their old one and making the move up seem more lateral by the day.

CUSA is better for my school at the moment because they have three in-conference rivals in Texas (UTEP, Rice, UTSA) and two in bordering states (Louisiana Tech and Tulsa). Before the move, they had two Louisiana schools (UL-Lafayette and UL-Monroe), one Arkansas school (Arkansas State) and no in-state mates.

Appalachian State could become another Boise State. They played great football at their level and have better support than many mid-majors.

posted by rcade at 02:48 PM on March 26, 2013

I don't get all this second tier conference shuffling. Moving up to the Big 10 or SEC, sure, but Sun Belt <-> Mountain West <-> CUSA? WTF?

posted by billsaysthis at 12:46 PM on March 27, 2013

The conference expansion at the top forced every conference down the ladder to grab more schools or run the risk of being wiped out. The Sun Belt and CUSA didn't want to end up like the WAC, so when they lost schools they poached some from lesser conferences.

posted by rcade at 11:01 AM on March 28, 2013

That's why the conferences wanted new schools, not why the schools wanted to move. Presumably the declining conferences could've folded, leaving the surviving conferences to move up the chain.

posted by billsaysthis at 11:42 AM on March 28, 2013

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