Mid-majors musical chairs – maybe?

BYU is rumored to be entertaining the notion of leaving the Mountain West Conference to become a football independent and a member of the WAC for all other sports.

Of course, if we are to believe the official Twitter feed (yeah, I know) of Colorado State, it’s a done deal.

If true, that certainly qualifies as a weird development.  In fact, it’s hard to see who comes out a winner in this.

  • BYU. The big question, of course, is what are they thinking?  The Mountain West is on the verge of obtaining a coveted AQ slot in the BCS.  BYU as an independent doesn’t have a shot in hell of obtaining that.  If the BYU brass has convinced itself that it can cut a Notre Dame-type deal with the BCS, I want some of what they’re smoking.  The only short-term gain I can see for the program comes if it turns out BYU can cut a deal for broadcast rights on its own that’s more lucrative than what it gets from the MWC.  And my guess is any immediate advantage to be gained there is likely to be offset from the revenue the conference would have gained with the automatic BCS slot.
  • Mountain West. They can kiss that slot goodbye.  The conference could have survived Utah’s jump to the Pac-10 with the arrival of Boise State, but losing its two biggest attendance draws and one of its big media markets is a different story.  And you’ve got to figure TCU is in play now; if the Horned Frogs leave, that very well could mark the end of a conference that was on the verge of scoring a very valuable concession from college football’s powers.  That’s one fast fall.
  • TCU. What a screw job.  You’ve got to feel for Gary Patterson, who’s played the long game on the BCS as a means of vying for a national championship and was on the verge of seeing that come to fruition.  Now that’s all about to blow up.  Although I’m sure it will be courted, it’s likely that there aren’t many palatable choices the program will be able to choose from.  It doesn’t draw well enough in football (nor is it particularly strong in other sports) to be an attractive candidate for a BCS conference.  It can stay in a weakened Mountain West and probably ensure that conference’s survival for the moment, but for what gain in the end?  Not that moving to, say, Conference USA does much to help, either (other than to gain a bunch of in-state rivalries).
  • Boise State. I have this picture in my mind of a person going up on an escalator, full of excitement about the party at the top… only to see everyone at the party suddenly going past, riding the down side.  Bummer.
  • Orrin Hatch. If anything, this strengthens his resolve.  The Catholics get a special financial arrangement from the BCS, and the Mormons don’t?  Like the Ground Zero Mosque (or however they’re demagogueing that today), this cannot stand.

Never a dull moment.

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UPDATE: The Wiz fills in some of the blanks here.

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29 Comments

Filed under It's Not Easy Being A Mid-Major, Political Wankery

29 responses to “Mid-majors musical chairs – maybe?

  1. NebraskaDawg

    Why didn’t BYU try to get into the Big 12 (Big 10?) when they had the chance?

  2. The Realist

    BYU is so miffed at Utah getting into the Pac 12 that they have decided to take their ball and go home. Unfortunately for them, their program does not have the cache to be a major football power as an independent.

    Scheduling is going to be a nightmare. Teams will schedule Notre Dame because of the name factor and the national television coverage that game presents (and, they stand a good chance of beating them). Unless BYU gets an NBC-type deal — which I don’t see happening — then they have nothing to offer BCS opponents.

    South Park – All About Mormons Episode

    They pissed away a BCS slot (dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb). They got their panties in a wad over Utah’s divorce (dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb). Now they’re thumping their chests with inflated self-worth (dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb).

    If you’ve never seen the full episode, do yourself a favor and watch it. For realz.

  3. The Realist

    The Wiz mentions their state-of-the-art television studio. I’m pretty sure I have the BYU TV station on my Uverse (not in HD, btw). I’m not likely to seek out that channel for a BYU game unless there is nothing readily available on ESPN(s). I never think to myself, “Hmm, I wonder who BYU is playing this week.” I think that is the point they are missing.

  4. Doug

    TCU could probably get picked up by the Big XII if Beebe decided to try to forestall any future conference crumbling by going back to 12 teams. Boise, though — yeah, they’d be screwed, along with the rest of the MWC.

    And I don’t know how any of this makes good business sense for BYU, either, unless they’re just trying to leverage some sweet concessions out of their conference the same way Texas did. That would be my best guess at this point.

  5. Go Dawgs!

    Wow. This is stupid. BYU’s national championship in 1984 was the worst thing that ever happened to that program. It was the flukiest of fluke things, and instead of expecting it to ever happen again, they should just cherish the fact that it happened. If they think that this is the way to get back to that level, they’re insane. With Utah leaving, they’ve got a much easier path to Mountain West titles, and if the conference gets an automatic bid someday, then they’re in position to do something special. Going this way? Do they not realize how long Florida State had to wander in the wilderness before landing in a power conference? What makes them think it will be different for them?

  6. Phocion

    Aww man. If you are going to engage in political wankery at least make it something that was put together with a little thought. The Barrak Obama Mosque at Ground Zero comparison makes no sense. You’d have been better off by ridiculing BYU for getting caught up in The Great Summer of Recovery by thinking that things really are getting better and that this move will help create that most important 3-letter word: J-O-B-S!*

    * Yes, Joe Biden actually said that.

    • You know what the GZM and the BCS have in common? The pols have no fucking business being involved in either.

      Makes perfect sense to me.

      • Phocion

        But the system is set up so that pols had to be involved in this decision. Forget the wankery of PrezBO and others, New York city pols were the ones that had the responsibility for approving or denying the application and permits.

        • Oh, good grief. Substitute “leading lights in the national Republican party” for “pols”. Happy now?

          • Phocion

            Harry Reid? Though I could see how with his track record one might think he was a double agent and member of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy!

            • Do you see the word “exclusively” anywhere in my substitution?

              All of this flailing around to avoid the point of my example seems like sophistry and nothing more.

              Since you’re so full of insight today, maybe you can explain why I should give a shit about the GZM and how, if built, it’s going to affect my life.

              • Phocion

                Correct me if I am wrong, but there has been commentary around these parts about whether the Confederate Battle Flag should be flow on the South Carolina statehouse or at Ole Miss football, hasn’t there? And that Right would be covered by the same Amendment that PrezBO and the punditry are seeking refuge. So why not on this issue?

                • Well, first of all, South Carolina involves direct state action, so it’s not the same First Amendment issue. And as for Ole Miss’ flag, technically you can say the same thing about the school being an agency of the state, but in any event, that’s their business as far as I’m concerned. I don’t see how it helps them recruit, but if they want to be stubborn about it, that’s their problem.

                  I don’t see how the NYC situation with a private religious site is the same.

                  Is “since the left gets to be PC, so does the right” the best defense you can come up with? Pretty weak beer you’re serving there.

                  • Go Dawgs!

                    Senator, thanks for approaching this issue with a level head. The GZM is the smoke-screen issue of this election cycle. None of the people who will worship at the GZM flew planes into the WTC, and the vast majority of them would have stopped those hijackers if they could have.

                    Oh, and there’s already a mosque four blocks from GZ. It pre-dates the WTC. So I guess the Constitution’s protection of freedom of religion only extends two blocks around that ground?

                    • Go Dawgs!

                      supposed to say “the *suspension of the* Constitution’s protection of freedom of religion only extends two blocks around that ground”

                    • Phocion

                      Dare I say that if this were the previous president stating that a militia group had the right to build across the street from the Murrah Building in OKC or a confederate organization wanting to build a memorial next to the Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama that the position of those on the Left would not be one of asserting their pride in the right of political groups in America do exactly that.

                    • Dog in Fla

                      Why do the wingnuts hate their very own Amerika?

                      “Let’s bottom line this shit and then the Rude Pundit’s done: You despise this country if you think the Cordoba http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iETzheX06A Initiative should move its planned community center. You have no understanding of the Constitution. If fact, you are in opposition to it. You have no respect for freedom of religion or speech. You are a coward who believes that the Constitution and the nation are too fucking weak to handle such freedoms.” And you also don’t like fine Corinthian leather.

                      http://rudepundit.blogspot.com/

                  • Phocion

                    Of course it is a city council that determines the zoning for the site and I’m remiss if the statements from the White House declined to comment and referred to the matter as one soley of a local issue.

                    Re PC: sounds an awful lot like your position is “do as we say, not as we do.”

                    • No. My position is that people who pound their chests about following the Constitution shouldn’t treat the First Amendment as a convenience.

                    • Go Dawgs!

                      Your Confederate analogy is much more in line than the militia analogy, unless you consider the faith of Islam to be a criminal enterprise. Lawful militias are one thing, but if McVeigh’s militia tries to set up camp next to the memorial in OKC, they were a criminal terrorist organization. They’d be blocked. And arrested. A lawful militia? Party on. Same with the Confederate group. Because Confederates weren’t the ones beating and murdering Civil Rights protesters in Selma. The KKK and white racist bigots were. And they can’t be barred from setting up camp, either. The KKK gets to march wherever they want to.

                      Look, neither of your examples are religious groups seeking to live their lives and worship freely at the site and in the manner of their choosing.

                    • Phocion

                      GD: Neither group is religious, but political groups are covered under the exact same Amendment that protects expressions of Speech, be it religious or political.

                      SB: No one on the Right, to my knowledge, has ever claimed that it isn’t within their rights to do so. What is being argued is that it just isn’t a good idea…that it is an affront to the memories of those who died and their survivors.

                    • Google “Newt Gingrich mosque” and get back to me.

                    • Phocion

                      Ever heard of Zoning Restrictions, Senator? That exist everday in a multitude of communities across this country solely to restrict the type of facility that can be built on privately owned land.

                      Are you going to take the position now that it is unconstitutional to tell a land owner that that he can’t build his factory in a subdivision of house…that he can’t build a bar or strip club across the street from a school?

                      By restricting the area around Ground Zone to commercial use the NYC city council could have done something that cities do everyday in this country. And they could have done it without violating anyone’s constitutional rights.

                    • WTF does this have to do with the initial point about demagoguery that sent you into a tizzy?

                      This isn’t about zoning, dude. (And I doubt you’re intimately familiar with the ins and outs of the NYC zoning code, anyway.) It’s about a bunch of cynical politicians who are exploiting a dangerous rise in nativism and religious prejudice in this country.

                      You want to discuss that, fine. Otherwise, quit wasting my time with irrelevancies like this.

                    • Phocion

                      Have you so quickly forgotten the part of the Constitution that allows citizens “to petition their government for redress”? Well, brother, that is exactly what they are doing. Sorry you don’t like their methods, but they are all when within their RIGHTS to object in the manner that they have.

                      I’m sure the next time the pro-gay marriage crowd, the pro gays in the military, the pro illegal aliens groups decides to demagogue someone that opposes their POV you’ll have a change of heart about bringing public opinion, both local and national, to bear on the political process…be it local or national.

                      BTW: Nice job of demagoguery of your own their…painting all those who oppose the building of the mosque as dangerous nativists and religious bigots.

                      The questioning of my knowledge was also a nice touch. Bravo.

                    • So many straw men, so little time.

                      Have you so quickly forgotten the part of the Constitution that allows citizens “to petition their government for redress”? Well, brother, that is exactly what they are doing. Sorry you don’t like their methods, but they are all when within their RIGHTS to object in the manner that they have.

                      Never said differently. I thought my comment about not applying the First Amendment on a selective basis was pretty clear.

                      I’m sure the next time the pro-gay marriage crowd, the pro gays in the military, the pro illegal aliens groups decides to demagogue someone that opposes their POV you’ll have a change of heart about bringing public opinion, both local and national, to bear on the political process…be it local or national.

                      Again, I thought my comment about PC on the left being used as a justification for PC on the right was pretty clear. Good to see you acknowledge demagoguery, though.

                      BTW: Nice job of demagoguery of your own their…painting all those who oppose the building of the mosque as dangerous nativists and religious bigots.

                      I didn’t say all, just that it was “rising”. You’re kidding yourself if you think it isn’t. It’s not an unusual development in bad economic times. Nor is it unusual for politicians and religious figures to exploit that.

                      The questioning of my knowledge was also a nice touch. Bravo.

                      Sorry if you didn’t like it, but you seemed to imply that this whole thing could have been avoided with a little judicious tinkering to the NYC zoning code. Courts give wide latitude to zoning ordinances, but not a blank check. Due process of law still applies and changing the code to exclude a mosque now after there are already two others in the area would not stand up to a legal challenge.

                    • One more thing on the zoning front: there’s a federal law that limits NYC from acting as you suggest.

  7. Vindexdawg

    I can’t believe that BYU would be that stupid. But we have all been surprised before. I really suspect that if this ever came to pass, it would really set things up for TCU to go to the (numerically accurate) Big 10 and be reunited with the other Texas schools from the old SWC. However, I do not think that the chapter is closed on the SEC expanding into Texas. We already know that A&M is very interested and we found out this summer that they will never follow Texas to the Pac 10 or 12. SEC could do a LOT worse than bringing in both the Aggies and the Horned Frogs for a 14-team league with a strong presence in the Texas TV market. And meanwhile BYU would be out on the streets, trying to market itself as an LDS version of Neuter Dame….hilarious. Another loser in all this: Boise State which joined the Mountain West this summer to burnish its future Conference bona-fides, left atop a gutted MWC – not so far from where they are now.

  8. Mayor of Dawgtown

    The bigger question is what happens to the MWC if BYU does leave. If they could steal a large media market team from C-USA West such as Houston or SMU then the MWC could not only survive, but might actually improve its lot. I agree with what has been written by everyone on this blog that BYU is nuts to try to go the independent route.