It's May 1: Do you know where your conference is?
 5/1/2012 11:25:28 PM      Replies: 13

JP5/1/2012 10:08:03 AM

I thought the A10 was supposed to announce the expansion today???

BM5/1/2012 10:11:23 AM

Apparently Butler is almost done.  GMU and VCU are on hold, mainly because they want to get as much of their Final Four money as they can from the CAA before they leave.

BM5/1/2012 11:44:55 AM


Yeager has said VCU, buoyed by its Final Four appearance in 2011, will earn about $5 million total — more if the Rams earn more shares — through 2017.

LA Fan5/1/2012 12:13:45 PM

Still, it seems like these teams may all be having second thoughts because they are worried about the A 10 getting raided by the Big East.  If Xavier and Dayton were to leave, these team would probably view the move as a mistake.  If I were them I would make the move.  it's not like where they are today is any great shakes.  

CSH5/1/2012 1:22:48 PM

Agreed LA Fan. Even if Xavier, UMass, and Dayton leave, the remaining A10 teams plus Butler still makes for better competition for GMU and VCU than the CAA.

BM5/1/2012 4:20:08 PM

That was fun... Charlotte to CUSA.

herve5/1/2012 4:31:55 PM

 with ODU leaving and vcu/gmu w/ foot in the door CAA is done done done.

BM5/1/2012 4:52:01 PM

Last schools to leave will destroy their athletic programs, but will keep the wad of cash left over from the NCAA payout?

GW in Houston5/1/2012 5:20:31 PM

Welcome GMU, Butler and VCU.  and bon voyage Charlotte.  I'm wondering if we can get Fordham to move their game (including FCS football) to the CAA.

The MV5/1/2012 5:51:39 PM

I think it's only fitting to provide this final tribute to the Charlotte 49ers.  The Niners behind the great Cornbread Maxwell reached the Final 4 during the 1970's and then fell off the map for a little while.  They emerged as a strong team in the Metro Conference and parlayed that success to a membership in Conference USA.  From 1991-2005, Charlotte reached the NCAA tournament 9 times in a 14 year span.  Nevertheless, the yahoos that are the 49er fan base did not recognize this as success wondering when their next final 4 appearance.  The Niners were a clear third in the Conference USA pecking order behind Louisville and Memphis.  In 2005, they moved to the A10 along with St. Louis.  There was no question that Charlotte was the better regarded program at that time and the fan base rejoiced that the Niners would now have an easier road back to the NCAA's on a regular basis.  Well, it should be reported that since that final NCAA appearance in 2004-05, the Niners have gone dancing a grand total of ZERO times.  So again to recap, 9 out of 14 in the Metro/Conference USA, 0 for 7 in the A10.  Today, with Louisville and Memphis no longer in their way, Charlotte is returing to Conference USA, not only to play football but, stop me if this sounds familiar, to embark upon an easier road to the NCAA tournament.  Certainly, their fans must be thinking just this.

Here's to hoping that the East Carolina's and UAB's of the world keep your embarrassed asses under .500, just as the A10 consistently did.    Bring on VCU, Mason and Butler!

herve5/1/2012 6:10:26 PM

Yeah, good riddance to that lousy fan-base. 49er fans certainly do not do themselves any publicity favors. You know what gets my blood really pumping? CONFERENCE USA FOOTBALL!!!!! WOOOOOOO!!!! HOOOOO!!!!!! 

herve5/1/2012 7:32:23 PM

It's their wacky fan-base which has demanded football for years. Odds are they will lose their hand-made shirts on this one.

bobo5/1/2012 11:13:53 PM

If Newt can get some crazy billionaire from Vegas to pump good money after bad on his hopeless quest, I'm sure Charlotte can find some delusional boosters to dump millions down the empty hole that will be 49er Football. 

Now they can be equally disapointed in 49er basketball and football. 

GW Alum in Houston5/1/2012 11:25:27 PM

To Herve and the other poster that are questioning the wisdom of a move to FBS football by some schools, perhaps I can shed some light on this. 

I'll compare three of the schools making the jump to  show you why it might make sense for some schools and not others.  South Alabama, Charlotte, and Old Dominion.

I'm an alum of both GWU and South Alabama.  As you may know,  South Alabama is one of those new FBS schools.  From USA's perspective, I think it makes sense.  First, USA has a place to play (and is in a conference that has already destroyed its' basketball product in order to become a FBS conference - and USA isn't getting a bid to a better basketball conference) in the Sun Belt.  USA has a paid for stadium with very low rent (its a 60 year old stadium but hey - its virtually free - and it seats 40,000) so we don't have to spend 60 million for a new stadium (like ODU and Charlotte will need to do).  USA has averaged 20,000 per game playing FCS and Division II teams, so we can break even.  We have only one FBS school within a 3 hour drive and a football mad culture in our market.  The Sun Belt is largely a 'bus' conference (its geographically tight) so travel isn't going to be a disaster.  For USA, it was a no brainer and while not revenue neutral, it isn't as taxing as one might seem.  For USA, the move makes sense.  Sun Belt schools don't pay their football coaches 1 million per year.  And the athletic foundation has paid for all the scholarships for 5 years in advance.

For Old Dominion, its a bit more complicated.  They're going to have to spend 60 million bucks on a new stadium.  They're going to have to compete with 6 AQ FBS teams (Wake UVa, NC St, Duke, Md and UNC) as well as East Carolina within a 3 hour drive.  Their new conference will require tons of expensive travel for all sports.  That being said, they have sold 10,000 season tickets (which isn't bad for a CUSA school).  However, their basketball product will be playing a lot of utter garbage instead of in the CAA.   Furthermore, football really isn't that popular in the Mid-Atlantic (even the AQ schools have trouble filling smaller stadiums during good years).  Old Dominion football is going to be expensive, but they've made all the correct moves so far.  Another issue for ODU basketball is that they've had some recruiting success in the Northeast.  Those contacts will likely wither away.  It might take them time to build new recruiting pipelines to replace the ones they'll likely lose. 

For Charlotte, football is really going to be an expensive gamble.   There's a LOT of football competition in the area.  2 SEC teams, and 4 ACC teams are within 2.5 hours.  And Charlotte has a NFL team.  They're spending 60 million on a stadium.   They wont see much of an increase in travel costs for their olympic sports (as they had to do a lot of flying anyway).  But their basketball product will be in a much lower profile conference.  Without Memphis, CUSA will be a one or two bid league.  They don't even know when the CUSA will let them join them for FBS football.  Until then, Charlotte will be a FCS independent.  So its going to be about  5 years before they can possibly make the jump.  They've sold few season tickets.  Their first season (as a transitional team - playing D2 teams) will be instructive.  If the fans don't show up or Charlotte starts losing to Presbyterian, its going to be a long road. 

For South Alabama, making the jump is low risk.  For Old Dominion, its a medium risk (as they've already got a successful, albeit young, and well supported FCS team).  For Charlotte, its bit more of a risk.

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