Skip to content

Myriad conference expansion pressers on tap Friday

Chalkboard AP

While they don’t quite move the needle like expansionpalooza did back in 2010 and 2011, several athletic departments will officially announce Friday that their respective football programs will be embarking on a new conference path in the not-too-distant future.

All told, and as reminded by Brett McMurphy of, seven schools will announce at individual press conferences their new league homes beginning in 2013: FIU and North Texas will confirm they are leaving the Sun Belt for Conference USA; Louisiana Tech, from the WAC to Conference USA; UT-San Antonio and Charlotte — newly-minted or soon-to-be newly-minted Div. 1-A (FBS) programs, with the former spending 2012 in the WAC — to Conference USA; and San Jose State and Utah State from the WAC to the Mountain West.

Texas State, which will spend its first year as a Div. 1-A program in the WAC, has previously announced it will join the Sun Belt in 2012.  Georgia State will also join the SBC the same year.

A spokesperson for Old Dominion, which has been rumored as another Conference USA possibility, told McMurphy that the university will continue to “assess the changing landscape of Division I athletics” before making a decision the future of its athletic programs, which currently reside in the¬†Colonial Athletic Association.

So, once all of the dust clears from tomorrow’s press conferences, the Mountain West, Conference USA, Sun Belt and WAC will (for now) look as follows beginning in 2013:

Air Force
Colorado State
Fresno State
New Mexico
San Jose State
Utah State

(Note: Boise State and San Diego State are leaving for the Big East in 2013, TCU for the Big 12 in 2012)

East Carolina
Louisiana Tech
North Texas
Southern Miss
UT-San Antonio

(Notes: Houston, Memphis, SMU and UCF are leaving for the Big East in 2013, while Charlotte, which will play as a Div. 1-AA (FCS) independent in 2013 and 2014, will join in football in 2015)

Arkansas State
Georgia State
Middle Tennessee State
South Alabama
Texas State
Western Kentucky

New Mexico State

(Notes: UTSA, Texas State, Louisiana Tech, San Jose State and Utah State will compete in the WAC in 2012, while Nevada, Fresno State and Hawaii will leave for the Mountain West July 1 of this year)

(Notes, the sequel: it’s highly, highly doubtful the WAC will exist as a conference after the 2012-2013 academic year)

Permalink 9 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Conference USA, Mountain West Conference, Rumor Mill, Sun Belt Conference, Top Posts
9 Responses to “Myriad conference expansion pressers on tap Friday”
  1. nevadapistol says: May 4, 2012 12:17 AM

    Good news Idaho. You now have a 50% chance of winning the WAC

  2. ningenito78 says: May 4, 2012 12:52 AM

    Just have Idaho and New Mexico St play each other 12 times and whoever wins the conference championship game goes to a bowl.

  3. seanmmartin says: May 4, 2012 1:40 AM

    Don’t forget South Alabama.

    They will play a SBC schedule this year, but aren’t eligible for the conference championship. They’ll be full members starting in 2013.

  4. John Taylor says: May 4, 2012 4:46 AM

    @Sean: Dammit. Just knew one would get lost in the mix.

    Thanks for the reminder.

  5. queenlivekillers says: May 4, 2012 8:13 AM

    With all of these schools moving up to Div. 1, that means some one is going to dream up some more bowls. Heaven forbid there should be an empty stadium when there are .500 teams sitting at home! Perhaps the Sham-Wow Bowl will await the third place Sun Belt team.

  6. bigdinla says: May 4, 2012 8:20 AM

    Good job seanmanrtin! John, just letting you now that Appalachian State and Georgia Southern are pretty much set to join the Sun Belt in 2013 as well to bring the conference up to 12.

  7. John Taylor says: May 4, 2012 8:48 AM

    @bigdinla: yeah, I wrestled with including those two, although I ultimately decided against it as nothing official has come down as of yet. Like you said, though, they are pretty much set to join.

  8. fatediesel says: May 4, 2012 11:41 AM

    I could see New Mexico State joining the Sun Belt but I’m really curious what will happen with Idaho. It seems clear the MWC doesn’t want them and the Sun Belt makes no sense from a geographical standpoint and even if they were willing to join the Sun Belt I don’t know why the Sun Belt would take them. I honestly wonder if they’ll go back down to FCS and rejoin the Big Sky.

  9. bozosforall says: May 4, 2012 1:53 PM


    Apparently, both NMSU and Idaho were both members of the Sun Belt at one time, so Idaho joining does have some precedence.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!