VCU to the A-10
 5/23/2012 10:04:24 AM      Replies: 108

VB5/14/2012 11:06:23 AM

Looks like it will be official this week....

VCU joining Atlantic 10 in 2013

By Brett McMurphy | College Football Insider

VCU is leaving the Colonial Athletic Association and will join the Atlantic 10 Conference in 2013, industry sources told

VCU is the second new addition to the Atlantic 10, joining Butler, which is leaving the Horizon League for the A-10.

An official announcement of VCU's move will be made this week, sources said. reported two months ago that Virginia Commonwealth, George Mason and Butler were in discussions with the Atlantic 10.

On Friday, George Mason, which along with VCU and Butler had discussions with the Atlantic 10, announced it was staying in the CAA. However, sources told at the present time the Atlantic 10 was looking to add only one more school and VCU got the nod over Mason.

The addition of VCU and Butler offset the losses of Temple to the Big East and Charlotte to Conference USA.

The addition of VCU and Butler is huge for the A-10. VCU went to the 2011 Final Four and Butler went to consecutive Final Fours in 2010 and 2011.

One reason VCU was interested in a move to the Atlantic 10 is the CAA is considered a “one-bid” league. Most seasons if the Rams don't win their conference tournament, they usually don't earn an NCAA tournament at-large berth. However, the A-10 has received multiple NCAA bids for five consecutive seasons.

Since 2000, the Colonial Athletic Association has received only four NCAA tournament at-large bids. By comparison, the Atlantic 10 had three at-large NCAA bids just this season and has had 20 NCAA at-large bids since 2000.

Since 2006 – even with George Mason and VCU reaching two Final Fours – the CAA only accrued 24 NCAA tournament units (awarded for every round advanced in the NCAA), compared to 36 for the Atlantic 10. Each unit is worth about $250,000.

VCU's departure is the latest defection from the Colonial Athletic Association. UMass left last season for the MAC and Georgia State announced it's heading to the Sun Belt.

Old Dominion also may be leaving. The school is considering a move to Conference USA and is expected to announce its decision by June 30.

GW Alum in Houston5/14/2012 11:19:00 AM

Wow, I'll be the Mason people are going nuts right now.  VCU leaving, ODU most likely out the door to CUSA, JMU looking to go to the MAC in all sports..... It might get really ugly for them. 

DCAbloob5/14/2012 11:29:55 AM

If the article is correct, Mason's choice to stay in the CAA wasn't Mason's to make so I suppose we could absolve that university of abject stupidity. It also means that Mason could be willing to jump if/when there's another A-10 opening, assuming Creighton or another such school isn't ahead in line.

CSH5/14/2012 11:31:49 AM

 I thought Mason screwed themselves by choosing to stay in the CAA knowing this announcement might be on the way, but it looks like they weren't even invited. I wouldn't be surprised if Mason did eventually make it to the A10, presumably to replace UMass or whichever team leaves next.

GW265/14/2012 11:54:25 AM

Per That Twitte feed as well - A-10 only wanted one team and VCU was picked over Mason.

bobo5/14/2012 12:03:35 PM

I'd rather have VCU than GMU at this point as they have the better program but I don't see GWU vs GMU as a zero sum game.  The competition and rivalry would benifit both programs so I'd welcome GMU if a new spot opens up in the future if UMASS or another team leaves. 

LA Fan5/14/2012 12:18:38 PM

 I definitely am happier with VCU over Mason.  You wonder if Richmond was pulling for Mason and GW for VCU because of the local market issue. The CAA is going to lose whatever relevance it had once ODU leaves, and to think there was concern that this league would actually become better than the A-10. 

GW Alum Abroad5/14/2012 12:22:54 PM

 And now, the A-10 OWNS the Richmond, VA, TV market (except for that public school nearby). 

In all seriousness, interesting that the conference took a second team in Richmond over a first team in northern Virginia (sorry the GW satellite campus there does not count). It does seem to put the CAA on life-support, a bit of a reversal of fortunes from what we expected to happen a few years ago when the A-10 was under the "steady" guidance of Linda Bruno, the Cptn. Smith of conference commissioners. 

Hatchet Man5/14/2012 12:34:26 PM

Major props to Commissioner McGlade on this.  She's gotten hammered not so much here, but on the A-10 board.  But if she can use this to negotiate this into an upgrade on the new A-10 TV contract, I think all will be forgiven.

thinker5/14/2012 2:15:43 PM

I would just guess that what GW and Richmond each wanted played some role in the decision.  I would bet the GW didn't really want Mason in if we could avoid it.  There is a lot of risk having a team from the same market join your conference.  Maybe GW wanted to avoid having Mason join more than Richmond wanted to avoid VCU joining. 

The MV5/14/2012 2:45:28 PM

VCU led the CAA in attendance (averaged over 7,600 per game).  Mason is part of the DC market which as we know all too well, competes with professional sports plus Maryland and Georgetown for television exposure, press coverage, and the sports entertainment dollar.  Unless Mason's tv ratings are along the lines locally with Maryland or Georgetown tv ratings, the fact that they are in the DC market means nothing (other than that more many people not watching them).  Coupled with Mason losing a long-time coach and VCU keeping a hot commodity in Shaka, putting VCU ahead of Mason is an absolute no-brainer.


Mentzinger5/14/2012 2:51:28 PM

Well, that's one way to get your conference a Final Four participant ... or two! Ultimate upside and huge payoff for our A-10 charter member Colonials.

newtman5/14/2012 2:59:20 PM

seen some odd things here but this was a first. when i read down to last post i looked and saw as my poster name: GW26.  that's confusing because that's not my poster name.  strange things happen here not to mention the posts.

anyway good move by GMU. i like it when someone doesn't go to the party they weren't invited to.

Long Suffering Fan5/14/2012 4:55:42 PM

Certainly would set a record for the number of Rams in one conference.

SkyHigh5/14/2012 8:26:05 PM

Fantastic move in way of making the conference stronger and more respectable. A10 now has to be considered one of the major conference in America. It only gets better from here. Great move!

Runnindawheel5/14/2012 8:58:56 PM

 Excellent point by LSF. Is there any other conference with 3 schools with the same mascot?

Mentzinger5/14/2012 10:20:16 PM

Two entire news cycles later, CAA commish sticking to, "Wha-?"

GW Alum in Houston5/15/2012 12:41:44 AM

Runnindawheel, The SEC has three Tigers, Auburn, LSU, and Missouri.  In addition, there are two Bulldogs in the SEC (Miss St, Georgia) and a third team uses a Dog as its mascot (Texas A&M Aggies).

DCAbloob5/15/2012 10:24:56 AM

"Wha-?" is the CAA commissioner's default state.

DCAbloob5/15/2012 10:27:02 AM

 VCU press conference at 1:30, Atlantic 10 press conference at 2:30.

alum15/15/2012 10:44:04 AM

Great chess playing by McGlade.  What a nice change!

Raises an interesting the conference moves further South, what becomes of the Bonnies?   Are they better off in the MAAC?  Do we even want them in the A10 much longer?

VB5/15/2012 11:42:15 AM

Latest report is that VCU is coming in for Fall 2012.  Does this mean GW will have one extra conference game?

DCAbloob5/15/2012 11:46:41 AM

It would make more sense to simply fold that game into a regular conference schedule, so there would be another OOC opponent needed. We'll see.

BM5/15/2012 12:22:42 PM

Could be a direct substitute for UNCC if they are given a quick out as well.

alum15/15/2012 1:21:05 PM

A-10 is realignment winner thus far with addition of Butler, VCU

By Jeff Goodman | College Basketball Insider

Atlantic-10 commissioner Bernadette McGlade just pulled off quite the trade.


The A-10 lost Temple to the Big East and Charlotte to Conference-USA. McGlade acted quickly and pulled off a nice swap, adding Butler officially last month and now -- according to our own Brett McMurphy -- also bringing aboard VCU.


From a basketball perspective, that's a home run.


Obviously, the loss of Temple and Charlotte hurt from a media market perspective. The Owls also bring stability in hoops -- as Fran Dunphy will have the program in contention just about every season for an NCAA tournament berth. However, Charlotte has been down over the last half-dozen years -- with the school's last NCAA tourney appearance coming in 2005 under Bobby Lutz. The league has replaced Dunphy and Charlotte coach Alan Major with two of the elite young coaches in the game: Butler's Brad Stevens and VCU's Shaka Smart.


Both have a Final Four on their resumes, and both have spurned lucrative and multiple high-major programs to remain in their current situation. They aren't going anywhere unless a big-time opportunity comes along that fits -- and that's good news for the A-10.


Look at the top eight programs in the A-10 once Butler and VCU officially enter the league and it's fairly impressive: Xavier, Butler, VCU, Dayton, Saint Louis, UMass, Richmond and maybe Rhode Island. That also lends itself to plenty of quality young coaches with Chris Mack, Stevens, Smart, Archie Miller, Derek Kellogg, Chris Mooney and Dan Hurley. Phil Martelli has St. Joe's back on the upswing, Mike Lonergan should have George Washington competitive soon.


The A-10 has had 20 at-large NCAA tournament bids since 2000 and had a trio this past season.


Don't be shocked to see that number increase once Butler and VCU come aboard.

Abe5/15/2012 1:33:04 PM

VCU in 2012 is official. The future is now.

Long Suffering Fan5/15/2012 2:02:20 PM

Official announcement from VCU.  They start this upcoming season.

Foam Hat5/15/2012 2:44:27 PM

If my memory is correct neither Temple nor Charlotte are leaving until 2013-14.  So with VCU joining in 2012-13 the A-10 will have 15 teams for this upcoming season?  Or is Charlotte gone this season?

LA Fan5/15/2012 3:17:04 PM

 Why not kick Charlotte out?  Just replace them on the schedule next year with VCU.  What does the A-10 owe Charlotte at this point?



GW Alum Abroad5/15/2012 3:59:38 PM

 Joining right away? This may explain why the volleyball and soccer teams are yet to release their schedules. Welcome VCU, you will find the A-10 is full of comraderie and crummy refs (with some real yokels cheering for one of the schools in Ohio).

Class of 135/15/2012 4:12:00 PM

 To me the obvious move here for the A-10 is to go to an 18 game conference schedule next year. With next year being a year of in with some of the new, but not out with the old yet, use it as an experiment to go 18 games. If the A-10 is trying to solidify itsself as a 4 bid league for the future, 18 games is the way to go because those two extra games in conference as opposed to out of conference do a lot for your SOS and RPI. Why not use this year as an experiment to try and figure out how an 18 game conference schedule works logistically?

CReeger5/15/2012 4:50:04 PM

 i have a new board that i just put     hope you'll tell your A10 brothers to give a once over,and if you have any ideas for it,EM again,glad to be home...

The MV5/15/2012 5:19:46 PM

I think every GW fan ought to be celebrating right about now.  This story has far more implications than merely Butler and VCU replacing Temple and Charlotte.  There were three plausible scenarios in which each would have landed GW in a much rougher spot than they are now:

1) The A10 schools with football teams leave.  I mean, those with any football team regardless of division, meaning schools like Duquesne, Richmond, Dayton and UMASS would seek to cut their best possible football deal.

2) Xavier, Dayton and SLU say hello to Butler....and goodbye to the they start a more geographically suited midwest conference.

3) The Big East thinks basketball rather than football, and raids the better A10 schools to replace Syracuse, Pitt, West Virginia, and anyone else who might be leaving rather than their dubious decision to refer to schools in California, Idaho and Texas as Big East schools simply so they can continue to hold football games. (I recognize that these will be football-only Big East schools but we are fortunate nevertheless that this was their preferred solution.)

The ramifications of any one or a combination of the above scenarios coming true would likely have been GW knocking on the doors of a watered down CAA, Patriot, or some other lesser (and likely, one-bid) conference (lesser of course applying to athletics and not academics).  All things considered, this may have been the single best outcome that GW and the A10 could have dreamed of receiving under the circumstances.



CReeger5/15/2012 5:35:03 PM

 NOTE: my new forum   sorry for the mistake........very sorry(check it out)

herve5/15/2012 6:32:08 PM

I'll say one thing, VCU fans seem to like to build online forums.

BM5/15/2012 7:58:54 PM

With all the great headlines, this would be a good time for the staff to put some pressure on wavering recruits.

LTR, STP5/15/2012 9:27:27 PM

I am amazed by all of you.  It just got several times harder for us to get an NCAA tournament bid.  So when the team doesn't make the dance over the next 4 years - I assume none of you that think this is such a great thing right now, will complain or call for the coach's or AD's job??

didn't think so. 

herve5/16/2012 7:51:17 AM

"It just got several times harder for us to get an NCAA tournament bid."--I didn't think Kvancz read the board. There are so many arguments AGAINST this it's hard to know where to start.

The MV5/16/2012 10:40:55 AM

So I told my wife this morning that VCU and Butler have joined the conference and her response (she's not at all a huge sports fan) was along the lines of "so when they played each other in the Final 4, that was a preview of a future Atlantic 10 game." 

I'm putting this into my top 10 proudest GW-related moments.  Ahead of Professor Kazmir and right behind Scott Van Pelt showing up for Senior Day.


BGF5/16/2012 11:38:47 AM

Herve, I couldn't agree more with you (that so many things are wrong with that comment). 

Primarily, GW should only get in the NCAA when it is good enough...and should be seeded appropriately.  It sickens me every time we make the tournament only to be underseeded and face stiffer competition in our first game.  Yes, the conference tournament is now harder with these two teams.  GREAT.  So be it.  I don't want to see GW get in with a weak record and get crushed in the NCAA's. 

But go back to the year we had one loss and played in the 8/9 game.  BS is what that was.  Our team was certainly better than that, but we had no resume to speak of.  Now, a team that makes it to the NCAA's from our conference is only going to see their RPI and resume improve at the conference tournament. many of you like being a double digit seed every time we make the tourney.

Bring on the challenging conference schedule!

CBO5/16/2012 12:01:24 PM

In a way both arguments are correct. IF we make the tournament our seeding should be better because of an improved league and hence RPI/SOS. However, as Butler and VCU are replacing Temple and Charlotte, the fact of the matter is thart we added two perennial NCAA contenders and lost one. This will make it somewhat harder given that we now will have more "good" teams to contend with.

But this all ignores one other dilemna - scheduling. Now the question more becomes can you win or place in the A-10 rather than your non-conference SOS. If we are now let's say a 4 bid league like we used to be will it help us to be the 6th best team with a strong OOC SOS? Alternatively, will a strong OOC SOS help us to obtain higher than a 5th place in Conference? There is the need to strike the right balance here and I'm not sure exactly what that is.

Finally, this is all a crap shoot anyway. The idea that because we get a 6 seed instead of an 8 seed in the NCAA significantly improves our chances is nonsense. The difference between a 9 seed and an 11 seed is not much in that first round. The only thing would be if you can win the first round you stay away from the #1 seed in game #2. However, getting a 3 seed is no picnic either. People forget that you have to be a little lucky anyway. In 1993, we were very lucky and had far from our best team, yet went to the Sweet 16. Several of Hobbs' teams, two of Jarvis' teams and Penders' first team were all better than that team but didn't go as far. In today's tournament it is much more about matchups and styles of play then it is about seeds unless you have a dominant team nationally. GW is highly unlikely to ever have a dominant team nationally so it will still all come down to who and where we play IF we can make the tourney.

The idea that anyone can understand now how this will all play out for GW is fascinating.

GW Alum Abroad5/16/2012 1:16:01 PM

 Adding VCU cuts travel costs for non-revenue sports, which could save them from the axe. That is good. Better competition in the A-10 should help sell more tickets for home games. That is good. A higher profile A-10 raises GW's profile, resulting in greater ease of recruiting and potentially drawing the attention of more applicants. That is good. 

So it will be harder to go 16-0 in conference play? Gee. Do you want GW to compete nationally a la Cal and K St or just rack up lots of wins while being an emperor without clothes?

CBO5/16/2012 1:49:46 PM

I'm not talking about going 16-0, I am talking about making the NCAA tournament. Something that hasn't happened here for a few years. Will it be good enough for us to play a nationally competitive OOC schedule and finish 5th (or lower) in a four-bid league (assuming that's not good enough for the tournament)? We can all pat ourselves on the back at the end of the season and say we played a great schedule, sold more tickets. I think I would take 16-0 and a weak OOC schedule any day of the week and so would most. For all the bluster about the weak schedule it still amounted to GW's highest seed. GW's history should not be lost on anyone here. You have to always be careful what you ask for. It does not automatically follow that GW will be better off. The league might be better off but whether we are better off depends on additional factors. I hope this works out as a plus for GW but that is far from a sure thing right now. We need to be first concerned about becoming competitive again rather than worrying about NCAA seeding when we haven't made the tournament since 2006-07. I believe ML has us on the right track but time will tell whether we can become a NCAA tournament team again.

cagwu5/16/2012 2:42:25 PM

CBO - The ghost of the Karl Hobbs / Jack Kvancz / UConn scheduling philosophy.

Want another flashback?  How about this article about three-point defense philosophy vs. Pomeroy numbers -

The MV5/16/2012 2:46:53 PM

Nothing about this is ever definitive or automatic but it's hard not to be excited about this, or fear that the conference is now too tough.  With Temple leaving, one could argue that the quality is about staying the same, particularly if you're willing to look beyond the past 3 seasons.   Keep in mind that Butler did not even make the NCAA field this season.

Nevertheless, anyone who even remotely understands this sport can see that playing in a competitive conference often results not only in more teams receiving at-large bids but a battle-tested readiness once the tournament begins.  This helps result in better quality recruits, better scheduling, better RPI, etc.  Lonergan and Nero will ultimately be judged in part by NCAA appearances; however, the objective is to build a program who can regularly make the tournament and advance in the Dance. 

By contrast, and yes I realize this is subject to change, but you can be George Mason who is destined to own the CAA for years to come (apologies to ODU who likely has 1 foot out the door).  The question is whether the NCAA will continue to give them an automatic bid as a result.

alum15/16/2012 3:25:12 PM

Why wouldn't the NCAA continue to give teh CAA an aotomatic  bid?  How many other sub-par conferences are denied automatic bids?

rocket5/16/2012 4:23:14 PM

Here's what VCU brings to the A10 insofar as GW is concerned:




X Country







X Country




Both men and women also have track and the women have field hockey. And both of these (along with those listed above are A10 championship sports.

DEA5/16/2012 4:32:41 PM

 Mason won't own the CAA for years. They won't even be the best team in the league next year, Drexel will. I believe this move will hurt their recruiting a fair amount because people will ask why they didn't go when they had the chance.

CBO5/16/2012 4:33:25 PM

cagwu - huh? All I am saying is a tougher schedule is great IF you win? If you don't win what difference does it really make? I am still looking for the asterisk on this season's record because we upgraded our schedule. Conversely, I also don't see an asterisk next to the year we went 27-3. Perhaps there aren't many Bill Parcells folks here but he's right when he says "you are what your record says you are." It won't help ML any to argue that he played tougher schedules if he keeps posting 10 win seasons. Conversely, he won't be fired if he wins 27 games against one of the worst OOC schedules in college basketball. Let's all hope we can win while playing tougher schedules and in a tougher conference. Then all of this will be moot.

The MV5/16/2012 4:45:04 PM

No asterisk next to the 27-3 season.  Just an 8 seed.


Free Quebec5/16/2012 7:10:13 PM

I don't really agree with that, CBO. Parcells' you are what your record is referred to an NFL team becasue NFL teams play roughly the same schedules (even the bad teams aren't gimmes in the NFL).   In college basketball there are nearly 350 D1 teams so there can be massive variations in schedules.

For example, Robert Morris and Florida both went 26-11 last year,   Are you going to argue that they were the same team because they are what their record says? 

No, of course not, because strength of schedule does matter. 

To your sort of pointless point that ML will be canned if he keeps winning 10 games a year, even against a tough schedule, but will get re-hired if he wins 27 consistently against a weak schedule, duh.  Does that really need to be said?  Is it relevant?  The goal is to get to the NCAAs, not just to keep a job -- and a tougher schedule (even with a couple less wins a year) gives you a much better chance. 

bobo5/16/2012 9:40:16 PM

More to the point, does the inclusion of Butler and VCU hurt GW's NCAA chances? I say no.  In the 27-3 season, GW had a very good team.  The problem for the seating was the Hobbs chose to play a soft OOC schedule and the A10 had an off year.  Thus their SOS was as bad as any 8 seed in NCAA history.  If the A10 is better, GW is likely to win less games.  But even if they go 1-2 agains VCU and Butler that season (more likely 2-1), GW still makes the NCAA and more likely gets a 6-7 seed because their overall SOS is better and they have beaten more good teams.

And who's to say that the A10 will be locked into a 4 seed max?  If 5 teams have the #s (mostly quality wins) than the A10 can get 5 teams in the tourney.

Levinator5/16/2012 10:27:53 PM

Sure- I will take a litle self- promotion. I told you all we werent done after Butler and-- even screwed up ( and got reemed) for mentioning VCU as our next get. But now that I'm free to say whatever the fuck I want--- Woo hoo. Go A-14. Wow. Nero is gonna get this marketing potential and use it every way we can. Woot

GW Fan5/16/2012 10:34:11 PM

The addition of Butler and VCU, in cunjunction with the improved top half of the A-10 last season may lead to getting more nationally (or regionally) televised games for the conference, which will help the whole conference's recruiting efforts.

Levinator5/16/2012 11:17:00 PM

And for those who may still be wondering why VCU over GMU? Just do some homework. VCU is Thr better team over the years of most of our basketball IQ lives and except for just one magical GMU season- it wouldn't even be a consideration. Now to the poster who claimed The a-14 is done and set at 14. Are you sure? Or is that a guess? You just realized we added a 2012 conference team without subtracting one... Right?

adclub5/16/2012 11:32:39 PM

Wait, so if the Big East called and asked us to join...we'd say no because it would ruin our chances at making the tournament? 

CBO5/16/2012 11:34:58 PM

FQ, I think you missed Pacells' point. He wasn't making a comparative statement across teams. He was making an absolute statement about wins and losses for his team and that statement has since been applied to all sorts of sports/leagues. So to use your example both Florida and Robert Morris were good teams last year in an absolute sense even though Florida would clearly be the superior team.

As for the ML example. I am fully convinced that the way some talk about the 27-3 season and 8 seed around here you would think that it was a disaster of biblical proportions and that they would rather us play a host of power conference opponents instead of winning games. There is a balance to be struck and I'm not claiming to be an expert on the right balance. But again I would like to remind everyone that GW has never received higher than an 8 seed and we ought to be careful for what we ask for because it could be a high reward strategy but also a high risk strategy as well.  And for those of you who say go for it without any pause for thought or moderation, just remember it won't be your head on the chopping block if it fails.  

Bobo - there is no guarantee the new A-10 gets 4 bids let alone 5. From what conference are those 4 at-large bids going to come from year in and year out? I promise the new A-10 will not be a 5 bid league except in a very rare year.

Levinator5/17/2012 12:57:44 AM

CBO- always there to set our bar low ;)

The MV5/17/2012 9:33:13 AM

CBO, a few years earlier, St. Joe's went undefeated during the regular season, which amounted to 1 less regular season loss than GW had in 2005-06, lost in the same round of the A10 tournament that GW lost in 05-06, played a respectable OOC schedule in an admittedly more difficult A10, and received a #1 seed.  Additionally, SJU became THE STORY in college basketball at that time, with Martelli's mug plastered throughout the national media.  By contrast, GW's success was the object of ridicule in many circles with the consistent talk of their soft schedule.  So yes, you are factually correct that GW has never had a better seed than that year.  But there is plenty of evidence to suggest that today, any A10 team has the opportunity to earn better than an 8 seed, losing more games than GW's 05-06 team, simply by having the balls to test itself and of course, winning most of the time.



CBO5/17/2012 10:44:25 AM

Well MV, you are right when you say "winning most of the time". For the past 5 years that simple concept has eluded GW for the most part. And if that one thing doesn't change it won't matter who or where we are playing. The STORY as you like to say will be that we did not win. There are no bonus points for playing a tough schedule if you are a bad team. Let me ask you and anyone else something. Did you prefer any of the last 5 years to 27-3 and a chicken shit schedule? Of course not. So let's get real here. The schedule isn't the first thing we need to worry about and I think ML understands that he needs to stock the cupboard wirth talented players first and then the rest will take care of itself. And BTW, the A-10 was a stronger league the year St. Joe's had that great year which contributed toward their seed.

Lev - not setting the bar low by any means. Identifying objective issues is not setting the bar low. It does not automatically follow that by playing a better schedule and by playing in a better conference, GW will necessarily be better for it. That is our fervent hope but by no means guaranteed here or anywhere for that matter. Coming off a 10-win season, our goal needs to be to get better first and then we can all figure out what it means. That's the easy part, getting better is much harder.

The MV5/17/2012 10:52:52 AM

CBO, first of all, I referenced that the A10 was a stronger league during SJU's run so you don't need to argue points that I've already conceded.  More importantly, if your agrument is that GW needs to be a good team in order to reach the NCAA's, I don't believe anyone will fight you on this.  This entire discussion, by definition, has to assume that GW has a good enough team (i.e. enough talent) to qualify; otherwise, it is an entirely pointless discussion.

CBO5/17/2012 11:02:28 AM

Agreed MV but that is the point ... everyone has assumed away the obvious condition precedent. I think that is a rather large assumption at this point given the past 5 years. Not to say I don't think we will be better but to say we have to be a lot better before we get to the relevance of this discussion regardless of scheduling. I am virtually certain ML and staff are focused on getting better right now and not on whether our prospects for NCAA tournament success have been enhanced by the changes to the league. This discussion is purely academic at this point.

Hatchet Man5/17/2012 11:17:42 AM

 Bids will like come conferencs like CUSA, CAA, Horizon, MVC, and others that occasionally got more than 1, but now will likely not (or much more infrequently).

BM5/17/2012 11:56:36 AM

ODU now officially leaving for C-USA.  Mason will be rolling in $100 bills for the next few years as the NCAA money is distributed.

The MV5/17/2012 12:07:06 PM

CBO, it may be a large assumption to make but you have to make it in order to have this it better that the conference gets stronger, thereby potentially diminishing GW's chances of an at-large bid (and A10 tournament win) since it will presumably be more difficult to win under these circumstances, or is it better to play in a less competitive conference but with a lower margin for error.  This is what's being talked about, not whether GW is good enough right now under either scenario.  Having this particular discussion doesn't assume anything about GW's current abilities in that the question could apply to any school in general.


The MV5/17/2012 12:10:45 PM

Mason is starting to resemble Kevin Bacon in Animal House during the parade scene...."Remain calm, all is well."

Long Suffering Fan5/17/2012 12:39:46 PM

Padding the record with some bunnies over the course of the year is OK;  however, you need to play good competition OOC, which in turn will prepare you for conference and hopefully post season competition, generate interest in the team and bump your RPI.  The team that won 27 games may have been better prepared post season if the schedule was harder during the regular season.   The 8 seed was probably about right...remember that we fell far behind the 9 seed and eventually won in overtime, which seems to indicate that the level of play between the 8 and the 9 was substantially identical. 

Free Quebec5/17/2012 2:14:39 PM

LSf, I agree with everything you said up until you said that UNC-W having a lead means the seed was right. It doesn't mean that.  Upsets happen and it doesn't mean the seed was wrong (e.g. Norfolk State wasn't mis-seeded last year just because they won).

UNC-W played exceptionally well for most of the game and they were a state school playing in their home state with huge fan support.  They would have beaten 75% of the teams in the tourney in that first round playing like that. The fact that we overcame their great shooting and smart play to win anyway, to me, is evidenced that we were underseeded as an 8.

That said, a better conference is better for us.  Obviously it assumes that our team wins games and is good, but if we're bad then conference affiliation is a moot point.   A better league, with a better reputation, more NCAA appearance, and a better TV detail, should help us recruit better and get better and be more equipped to win games on a national stage.

Dolphin Michael5/17/2012 2:21:14 PM

Good one, MV.


Danjsport5/17/2012 5:20:38 PM

 Gmu just wants to make sure copes looks good with bad competition.

Tuna Can5/17/2012 5:49:28 PM

Dan, I buy that!

LA Fan5/17/2012 6:48:41 PM

Just to weigh in, I think a lot of people here would rather have Butler or Gonzaga's last few years over Seton Hall's or Providence's.  So teams can get buried and fall by the way-side in better conferences, and teams like the two above can have great runs and become nationally known programs in lower conferences.  The A-10 is now heading towards being a better conference (however we did just lose Temple). Still, if the coaches for Butler and VCU stick around for a while, those could be two very competitive programs for years to come.  That's our reality going forward, so GW's admin needs to understand that.

I do think it is once again up to GW's admin to answer the call.  They need to stay on top of the basketball program and give it what it needs to succeed.  If they do then GW should be competitive.  I do suspect some teams like Duquesne and Fordham will begin to suffer even more under this new line-up and fall by the way-side.  The A-10 is only going to get more competitive and the lesser teams are going to get buried.  It feels like the A-10 just went from being a shade above the CAA to being a shade below the Big East.  If you look at what a poster on the A-10 board put for their program rankings next year, GW is still teetering in the lower middle pack of the conference.  It is a crucial time for the school to step up and make things happen. The wins are not going to get any easier.

 And hey, if things don't work out and GW gets buried then we can go to the new and improved CAA and try to be the Gonzaga of the East.  But I don't think there are too many votes here for that just yet.  

1. Saint Louis- They're deep, gritty and really didn't lose to much from a talent persepctive. Add in Majerus and you have what should be a very good/to great team. They should spend a lot of time in the top 25.

2. UMass- CW is a special player and they have Big East athletes. Still don't love Kellogg and I think that style of play is hit or miss but they have too much talent to be out of the top 3.

3- St Joes- Everything is there for them to be a tourney team. They're incredibly talented but they still lack focus at times. Could very easily see them finishing #1 overall or falling apart. 

4- VCU- Saw VCU play a fair amount last year, pretty incredible what they were able to pull off with such a young team. Shaka is worth every penny. They will miss Burgess more than people think. 

5- Dayton- May be the leagues 5th tourney team for the first time. Dillard is an absolute stud and the Gtown transfer should help make up for Johnson leaving.

6- Temple- Lose a ton but return some great players and Dalton Pepper. Think they will sneak up on a few teams and could be in the top 5 by years end.

7- Xavier- Amazing that they're this low but they lose so much that it's inevitable. I know they're still talented but there's no reason to think that their won't be a large adjustment period for these young guys. Should improve by the end of the year and set up a tourney run again in 2013.

8- LaSalle- Won't sneak up on anybody this year but that backcourt should still be phenomenal. Should still be weak up front and will have difficulty matching up with the league's elite because of it.

9- Richmond- Will definitely improve. Derrick Williams is a beast and those guards have their moments. Mooney is too good a coach to have his team go out as meekly as they did last year.

10- GW- Have a very good freshman class coming in and the kid Armwood from Nova who can play(started for them I think). Not too much depth from the upperclassmen but they should compete this year and maybe could be a CBI team.

11- Bonnies- The natural comedown after a cinderella season. They have some talent left over, Conger especially, but that PG situation is still up in the air and without Nicholson to rely on they will have some major scoring droughts. 

12- Fordham- The year they make it to the A10s. Gaston will be a man possessed this year. I don' t think Pecora is a good coach or the answer in the Bronx but he is collecting some talent there under the radar.

13- Charlotte- They might as well leave the conference now. They have some talent but there's something weird about that program and I'm not sure Major is the answer down there. 

14- URI- Hurley should be great and they will make a big jump with the transfers next year. This will be another rough one though, especially with no HOlton/Outerbridge.

15- Duquesne- Not sure what needs to be said. They are in for a rough recovery period.



thinker5/17/2012 7:34:01 PM

Better competition is a good thing, right?  It's only good if we can perform.  Now there are two more teams in the A-10 that have significant advantages over GW.  Now there are two more teams that we will have to climb over to be really successful.  So there is upside but there is also downside to making the A-10 a lot tougher.  Competition will allow us to climb to higher heights or push us down further - one or the other.  TBD

Poog5/17/2012 7:39:43 PM

I'll be convinced that GW has made it when its fan base matches the efforts put forth by its new athletic administration and coaching staff. GW has historically been an abysmal traveling school whether to tournaments, road games, or even home games at the Smith Center. Thirty jazzed folks on a message board don't exactly a rabid fan base make. Only when Colonial garb and fannies are omnipresent in arenas will GW be as real and relevant as is suggested here or as is starting to be projected on the court under Lonergan.

Levinator5/18/2012 1:04:14 AM

Poog is dead right! Look at the OOC, the incoming ML class and the work PN did assisting the other conference AD's with making sure we position (posture) our selves in a top 6-7 conference. Yes we lose Temple. Yes we lose Charlotte. Yes we will lose 1-2 more. Yet, we add Butler, VCU and are in talks with other prospects for 2013. Then take a look at our OOC. Seriously- the best in years. Even if we ended season 17-15 or 16-16 etc. It would be a major improvement. Forget an improbable 20 win season. As we raise our bar- it will trickle down. It's our job as fans- to recognize the upward direction our program has chosen- and do our best- to support them.

BM5/18/2012 8:51:16 AM

Looks like JMU is now looking around.  The decision to stay pat may backfire for Mason.

CBO5/18/2012 8:58:56 AM

I think the best analogy for Poog's post is that "if a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to see it ..." Yes, Lev we can all see the OOC. The only question remaining is this time next year will we be cursing it as over our heads or praising it as the right move at the right time. As thinker says "TBD."

Hatchet Man5/18/2012 9:37:44 AM

You need to run with the big dogs.  I'm not interested in CYO basketball.  Sorry.

CBO5/18/2012 10:03:44 AM

Sure Hatchet Man. But you better be sure you are not a Chihuahua first.

danjsport5/18/2012 11:01:08 AM

Lev- we may lose one or two more?  Do either of those rhyme with Mayton or Davier?

GWAlum20015/18/2012 11:03:18 AM

UMASS will be gone soon...

bobo5/18/2012 11:05:35 AM

I'd take GMU over UMASS any day of the week.

herve5/18/2012 11:16:34 AM

Umass is gone for sure, but anyone remember Mason prior to their Final 4 run? Thought so.

I still VERY much would like to have Umass because they have traditionally been good for long periods of time (VERY unlike Mason), but think it's a generational thing. In short, if you don't hate Mike Williams, then you will not miss the Minutemen.

DCAbloob5/18/2012 11:38:12 AM

James Madison put out a statement yesterday signing the praises of the CAA, much to the consternation of the school's online fanbase. JMU would be wise to instead go MAC while it can & give George Mason greater incentive to work a deal with the A-10. 

The MV5/18/2012 11:46:08 AM

LA Fan, I understand you were only conveying the predictions of one fan on the A10 board, but if anyone would be interested in wagering that Xavier finishes in 7th place (or worse) in the A10 next season, please let me know.  Yes they lose a lot but also have 3-4 Top 150 high school players coming in.

GWAlum20015/18/2012 11:53:36 AM

I remember Mike Williams and Lou Roe well but can't recall much UMASS success outside of the Calapari days.  A nice NIT run under Travis Ford and Bruiser Flint's ever increasing loss totals at UMASS fails to impress. 

Regardless, UMASS is a 1 game a year non-rivalry against a midlling program.  The dream (for me) would be an A10 "quad" of GW, Richmond, VCU and GMU.  Play each other home/home every year.  Develop some genuine hatred for each other.  Flame wars on the board and maybe some petty vandalism on opposing campuses.  Good old fashion college basketball rivalry and tradition.

bobo5/18/2012 12:00:34 PM

The apove post was mine (sorry GW2001)

Long Suffering Fan5/18/2012 1:24:01 PM

I agree with what is being expressed, namely that UMass is the superior basketball program to Mason, but from a purely selfish GW standpoint, it is better having Mason in the conference due to the natural rivalry..  Further, if the Big East implodes and the nonfootball schools seek additional members, Xavier, as one of the best non power conference basketball schools, would be an obvioius target.  Can't imagine why they would be interested in Dayton.  Certainly not on basketball pedigree, and I don't see their large local fan base as sufficient reason.  Further, it is not so clear that the basketball only schools of a divided Big East are significantly better than the Atlantic 10.

ColonialHoo5/18/2012 1:24:29 PM

The addition of VCU is good news.  This will help preserve the conference and avoid getting picked apart by othe conferences.  I would also like to see GMU included for some local rivalry.

george the hippo hunter5/18/2012 4:17:17 PM

so it looks like GMU  is picking up the check this year and could be UMASS's replacement? 

BM5/18/2012 4:24:36 PM

I think that's what they're playing for.

FredD5/18/2012 5:04:26 PM

 It's time for all to write the checks they can and talk/invite non-gw folks into coming to games. It's an arms race and gw has done a lot; so it pays of best of we do our. Maybe a place to start is no more complaints about the food;-)

Levinator5/19/2012 4:22:28 AM

Danj- no- Dayton seems just dandy with Xavier and Butler. UMAss will unfortunately go. Now- can the A-14 collective pull some morf magic And negotiate a 2013 deal? That's where folks are getting The GMU hype. Simply about money- GMU stays- VCU came - Charlotte and Temple leave soon. Yet- we are now in the drivers seat to BOOST our basketball conference by replacing UMass with a top notch choice. I will leave that for debate The second team we must face leaving is also obvious. It's not definite- but- as we see football schools migrate across divisions - it's fair to assume we may lose is Fordham. Lmfao. Oh my god do we wish. Hahaha.

ziik the shirtmaker5/19/2012 10:01:11 AM

Lev, you told me just last week or so that UMass wouldn't go. Now, they're just about gone. Can't you be consistent on just this one issue? How can I count on you for anything anymore?

(After reading some more of my hometown, UConn papers, it seems UConn is big on wanting BC to be its big time New England rival in fball and basketball; but the real world keeps intruding, leaving UMass as its likely not-so-big time NE rival.They're whining about it, even while UConn basketball is crumbling. Everybody, it seems still loves Calhoun, while the roster keeps going through turnstyles. GWU is looking more and more like its made itself a stable commodity. I feel like a grumpy old man this AM anyway. I yearn for GW vs. Furman, just one more time.)


ziik the shirtmaker5/19/2012 10:02:45 AM

Doing my part to give you a recap opportunity, Lev. DOn't blow it again. You've been warned.

ColonialHoo5/19/2012 1:08:59 PM

Zilk - If UConn wanted the BC rivarly, they would have gone over to the ACC with Syracuse and Pitt.

ziik the shirtmaker5/19/2012 6:57:57 PM

Just reporting what I read in Connecticut sources, Hoo. UConn, reportedly (i.e., I don't really care, and am not making this up), is desperate to retain a non-conference "big time" rivalry with a New England power, and they've tagged BC as "It." They are not real keen on UMass, because it's not considered "big time," enough, and they still are whining about what John Calipari supposedly did to them. (I'm not up on it all any more, but I guess its that JC paid more than the market price for his recruits, then beat UConn with Connecticut players, like Camby.) And, they're not real big on Syracuse as a potential big time opponent, because they think the Orange are shaky in fball, and may become shaky in basketball soon, too. Who else is there, in NE or in NY? The Yankees? The Red Sox? Nope, UConn wants to be bigger than them. They've already sold their souls. They want us all to know it.

UConn's got a wealthy fan base, and sports hubris, big time. They think they can match the women's team in success across the board, and think they've got the cash to prove it. I just don't see them as a sustainable Notre Dame of the Tri-State Area, but if you poll 100 Nutmeggers, I'd bet 65 of them would think they're ready for gold helmets right now. Real gold. Not just yellow or buff paint.


Come on Lev. Make us some hash. 

bobo5/19/2012 7:20:01 PM

Did anyone at UCONN tell Calhoun that BC is their new rival?  After BC left for the ACC, Calhoun vowed NEVER to play BC again as long as he's the coach at Storres.  Obviously things have changed now that UCONN wants to get into ACC football but BC remembers Calhouns statements and was the veto vote preventing Connecticut from joining the ACC last go around. 

Too bad for Calhoun that being an insufferable prick actually can come back to bite you in the end.

ziik the shirtmaker5/19/2012 7:41:47 PM

Perceptions are funny, bobo.

I used to have an office with a couple of big BC boosters. Irish Catholic, too. I recall congratulating them on some sort of big time basketball game BC won, and was surprised to be told " Basketball? Who gives a shit about basketball? BC is a football school." This was after Doug Flutie, but still, I was stunned.

I had to tell them they had no idea what big time football was, because unless BC was big time in the 30's or 40's, I'd never heard of it until a guy I played with in high school got a BC football scholarship. He was a quarterback who couldn't throw the ball, and that seemed typical of BC to me. Anyway, they had the Flutie years. What's UConn had in football?

Calhoun may be a prick, but he's UConn's prick, and the new UConn Prez is scared shitless of him. They won't turn on him until he's on his death bed, when they'll suddenly realize its University of Connecticut, a school and not a team, and get all sanctimonious about his regime. Unless another big hitter coughs up some more cash, that is, and says "I want big time basketball, and that's what I'm paying for." A guy already has done that to UConn for football, but he never got his money's worth,

Come on Lev. KH is the 4th Coach-in-Waiting at UConn. There's your angle. Write this one up.

porter715/19/2012 7:47:26 PM

That's cute that UConn wants BC as their rival.  I wish they had told BC that.  Syracuse and BC have set up a deal to play each other in football over Thanksgiving weekend every year and actually have tradition of playing each other.  It's been big for both programs to set up the two school as rivals since even before Syracuse was invited into the ACC.

I like the Syracuse football being "shaky" quote.  It's funny coming from a school that has had football for about 15 minutes, and selected as their coach the guy who got fired by Syracuse (and has been blamed by many as being the initial cause of the decline in the program).  Also, I'm pretty sure UConn basketball is on a little shakier ground than Syracuse.  Syracuse has a well-respected assistant coach in waiting.  UConn has Ollie, a pretty young assistant with a short track record or Hobbs, who we all know about.  Projecting much?      


Class of 135/20/2012 2:45:10 AM

 Calhoun may be insufferable, but my goodness, is it just me or is UConn one season removed from its thrid championship under him? Pretty sure there isn't another school with 3 in the last 15 years. I don't like his style, and yes they had a horrible season and the APR stuff is a bad look right now, but he very well could win a 4th in a few years if he's still around. Don't declare a program crumbling  year after a championship, it's just not right.

ziik the shirtmaker5/20/2012 9:53:16 AM

The roster keeps hitting the turnstyles, '13. That's the issue. Guys who want to compete in the NCAA's and can't, because of UConn's academic "suspension" from the post season, are leaving. Still, though, the incoming players are big timers, and every guy on the team seems to favor JC.

I'm sure you have your sources, but the Hartford Courant, Stamford Advocate and Danbury News Times all love the Huskies, and have guys who are dedicated to the UConn trail. Of course, some days it looks like the same guy, saying the same thing, day after day. They're boosters more than reporters, and they rarely are critical of Calhoun's style. I'd love it if there were some local reporters who were gaga over GWU, but I don't recall any, ever.

I rarely see any mention of KH, but I think he's the 4th of 4 former head coaches assisting Calhoun, so that's no surprise. And, UConn has made a point of saying Ollie is not Calhoun's replacement in waiting, for whatever that's worth.

JP5/20/2012 9:54:47 AM

 How did a thread titled "VCU to the A10" devolve into a thread about UConn?  Why do we even care about UConn, BC, or even Syracuse?

ziik the shirtmaker5/20/2012 10:04:07 AM

Drunken excess is the root of all evil, seconded by boredom and a keyboard. Feel free to post about the Buff, with all the news you have.

GW Alum Abroad5/20/2012 8:45:36 PM

 Bringing this back on topic, is he trying to convince us or himself?

notta hater5/20/2012 10:28:11 PM

 and he played the violin while Rome burned.  He is pretending to be calm.  The guy's pants are full of crap and his gut is even more upset as he thinks about the lack of options.  Are we looking at a defection from say . . . the MEAC or something?

Levinator5/23/2012 10:04:19 AM

Ziik- well done my friend. I cwnt wait - this will be a douzy

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