Blog Entry

CUSA and MWC discuss BCS play-in and updated info

Posted on: August 20, 2010 11:48 am
Edited on: August 20, 2010 5:01 pm

The commissioners of Conference USA and the Mountain West have had preliminary discussions regarding a BCS bowl play-in game between the two conferences' champions that would lead to an automatic BCS bowl berth, MWC commissioner Craig Thompson confirmed Friday after's initial report.

Thompson and his Conference USA counterpart Britton Banowsky spoke Thursday in the midst of upheaval below the BCS conference level according to the source. There are few specifics at this point but the idea is to make both conferences more relevant and perhaps coax BYU into staying in the Mountain West. Thompson stressed the preliminary nature of the talks. Here is how the MWC couched things on its website.

"We had probably set this up about a month ago," Thompson said. "We said, 'Let's just talk about what's going on if there are going to be all these superconferences ...' We did speak about, 'What if a group of 22-24 teams were to approach the BCS about an automatic bid vs. the nine, or eight or 10-mmeber Mountain West?' That was on the table. I'd like to label it a 'think session.' "

No information has been submitted to BCS officials from the two leagues. In fact, 2010 begins a new four-year cycle for the BCS. That would mean the soonest anything could be in place is at the end of the 2014 season.

"The conferences have agreed to this format for the next four years," BCS executive director Bill Hancock said.

Conference USA and the Mountain West were among those conferences.

"We talked [with CUSA] about marketing 24 instead of 12, 10, whatever," Thompson added. "The bottom line is this is the first of four years. We haven't played this year's BCS games. This is like kindergarten in formal education. We're just talking."

Nothing much has changed in terms of access in the new BCS agreement. The champions of the six BCS leagues get automatic BCS bowl berths (ACC, Pac-10, Big 12, SEC, Big Ten, Big East). The other four BCS bowl berths are filled by schools that reach at-large qualification standards. In the Mountain West, Utah (twice) and TCU have gained at-large berths in recent years. Conference USA has not had a BCS bowl team.

CUSA and the MWC are among the conferences that are halfway through a four-year evaluation process to determine a possible temporary BCS automatic-qualifying status in 2012 and 2013. The Mountain West was close to achieving that status until it lost Utah in the offseason and invited Boise State, Fresno State and Nevada into the league.
The subject of a BCS bowl play-in game among non-BCS leagues has been discussed informally in the past. Conference USA and the MWC would probably have to get approval from the other nine Division I-A conferences. One potential roadblock: The three other non-BCS leagues (MAC, WAC, Sun Belt) probably would have an issue with those two conferences playing for a BCS bowl instead of them. The WAC probably isn't on the best terms with the MWC right now. The WAC has placed teams in BCS bowls three times (winning twice) since 2007.

This would not be a merger between Conference USA and the MWC, but a play-in game to advance to the BCS after both leagues decided their conference champions. Conference USA already stages a conference championship game. The Mountain West is in a state of flux as BYU decides if it wants to leave the league and play as an independent in football. Fresno State and Nevada accepted invitations to join the MWC this week, supposedly beginning in 2012. Since it's not certain how many members the MWC will have going forward, it's not certain if it will attempt to stage a conference championship game of its own.

A play-in game could mean at least one of the leagues would be playing 15 games in a season, counting a conference title game, BCS play-in game and bowl game.

The MWC is still waiting on BYU's decision. As of Friday afternoon, the Mormon flagship was supposedly still deciding whether to go independent in football. BYU had, or has, a standing agreement to play four-to-six games against WAC teams and put its non-football sports in the conference.

Thompson addressed the status of his conference's automatic BCS qualification in 2012 and 2013. If the MWC (and other non-BCS leagues) achieve a level of three mathematical benchmarks during a four-year evaluation period ending after the 2011 season they would earn a temporary automatic access to a BCS bowl. If they achieve two of the three benchmarks -- which is where the MWC is right now -- their admission would be subject to a waiver granted by the BCS. That waiver process has not been defined by the BCS.

In the past, the Big East has retained automatic BCS status by waiver.

"The numbers aren't that frigging difficult to figure out," Thompson said. "No, we are no qualified. We have not qualified. We've got two years left to go."

As of early June, the MWC's BCS prospects looked excellent. Boise State had joined the league, adding its numbers to the mix. Then Utah bolted for the Pac-10. When Fresno and Nevada joined that possibly diluting the numbers.

Thompson would not be specific on the status of The Mtn. contract with league. A source told this week that the absence of Utah and/or BYU could allow conference's network to walk away from the MWC partnership. Thompson said only that there is language in the contract regarding membership. The Mtn. is owned by Comcast and CBS College Sports.


Since: Dec 30, 2007
Posted on: September 3, 2010 10:17 pm

CUSA and MWC discuss BCS play-in and updated info

The last 4 GMAC Bowls:

2009 GMAC Bowl

Central Michigan 44 vs. Troy 41 F/OT

Jan. 6, 2010

7 pm

ESPN 2008 GMAC BowlTulsa 45 v Ball St 13 Jan. 6, 20098 pm ET ESPN2007 GMAC BowlTulsa 63 - Bowling Green 7Jan. 6, 2008  ESPN 2006 GMAC BowlSouthern Miss 28 - Ohio 7 Jan. 7, 2007  

The first 5 GMAC Bowls are ancient history, dude. It looks like the tide has turned dramatically, wouldn't you say? Like I said, CUSA doesn't even bother with this bowl anymore. They have moved beyond it.

And CMU struggled to beat Troy last year, a Sunbelt team. Have you forgotten that Florida Atlantic, another Sunbelt team with a 6-6 record, recently went up to the Motor City Bowl and beat the MAC's darling, CMU?

Either CUSA has gotten a whole lot better or the MAC has gotten a whole lot worse in the past 4 years. Take your pick.

Since: Apr 16, 2009
Posted on: August 30, 2010 3:47 pm

CUSA and MWC discuss BCS play-in and updated info

Dude your crazy.... The first 5 years of the GMAC bowl in which the MAC & C-USA played, the MAC went 5-0 against C-USA!!  Again, do better!

Since: Dec 30, 2007
Posted on: August 23, 2010 11:38 am

CUSA and MWC discuss BCS play-in and updated info

No, they haven't.

Last year, CMU beat Troy in a very close game in the GMAC Bowl. Troy is a Sunbelt team.

The last 3 years before that, the MAC rep lost the GMAC Bowl by at least 21 points to the CUSA rep, including the worst bowl beatdown in history when Bowling Green lost to Tulsa 63-7 in January, 2008.

As a matter of fact, CUSA has now "graduated" beyond the GMAC Bowl and the Sunbelt now has the bid because the sponsors of the game figured the Sunbelt wouldn't beat the he]] out of the MAC rep like the CUSA teams did.

The CUSA is generally at least 21 points better than the MAC teams. That is what GMAC Bowl histoy has taught us.
The MAC has lost bowls to the Sunbelt teams and they are on about an even par.
Neither conference, even with an undefeated champion, will not even be taken seriously in a BCS Bowl bid discussion for at least a decade.

Bottom line is that the MAC and Sunbelt both suck, while CUSA and MWC are real mid-major conferences. Your MAC argument holds no water.

Since: Apr 16, 2009
Posted on: August 23, 2010 9:13 am

CUSA and MWC discuss BCS play-in and updated info

Ummm.... The MAC has been been much more relavent than C-USA!! Haha... Just look at the head to head in the GMAC bowl... Really?  Do better!

Since: Dec 30, 2007
Posted on: August 21, 2010 10:06 pm

CUSA and MWC discuss BCS play-in and updated info

Looking at our future schedules (so far) through 2021 the only decent OOC "draws" we have are South Carolina, Auburn and Vanderbilt. Tulane & Syracuse aren't going to draw squat. The Alabama home/home has been postponed to an unknown time/date for reasons not stated at this time.

So, to answer your question, I just don't know. Maybe they don't. I wonder why we stopped playing Notre Dame like we used to when we were independent. I miss those games.

Maybe we need a new AD or a new scheduler. I will have to ask some of the GT alum to look into it, but I have never even thought about it before. 

Good question. I do plan to investigate.

Since: Mar 15, 2008
Posted on: August 21, 2010 7:11 pm

CUSA and MWC discuss BCS play-in and updated info

doesnt really answer my question of why Geogia Tech, which cant sell tickets to its games, would purposely schedule such dud non conference games. They have no control over the pitiful even year home ACC schedule but those non conf games are under their control.....dont' they want sell outs? 


Since: Dec 30, 2007
Posted on: August 21, 2010 1:54 pm

CUSA and MWC discuss BCS play-in and updated info

You can happily ask yourself the same question about Georgia - and with much more emphasis!

Your SEC East is a frigging joke!
You have powerhouse teams like:

Kentucky and Tennessee, which beat you last year. My the Dawg program must be taking a terrible turn for the worse when the only win you have to brag about is against that lowly ACC Georgia Tech!

Vanderbilt and South Carolina, wow, real barnburners here! Good luck against those Top 25 teams!
Florida is the only GOOD team in your division. And they will stomp you guys again this year!

Meanwhile, the ACC Coastal Division has 4 of the 6 teams ranked. Yeah, I guess your division blows the ACC away! Try again, dude, your biased anti-ACC arguments hold no water and are rather easy to refute.

However, UGA may just be able to squeeze its struggling self into another low-tier bowl game this year with superior opponents like:
Louisiana-Lafayette Sunbelt team not even favored to win their lousy conference
Colorado Pitiful former Big 12 basement feeder
Idaho State Can't beat Oklahoma State, so you guys decided to take on the might FCS ISU guys? Really, has it been that long since Vince Dooley ran your program that you have to sink this low?
Georgia Tech By far the worst team on your schedule is ranked ahead of the Dawgs in every poll, in spite of your victory last year. What a slap in the face that is! And GT is not expected to win the ACC or the Coastal this year, but everybody out there still thinks they are


Pitiful, Hootman, pitiful. I sure hope you have a good comeback for this, because if not, I shall be very disappointed in your "Dawgness" indeed. Imagine that, the pitiful and sorry ACC has a division with 4 ranked teams while UGA sneaks in at #23. Where has the Dawg program gone? Downhill, methinks, dude, downhill! And headed towards a huge crash.

Is UGA expected to actually win 9 games this year? Only by you!

Since: Jun 3, 2010
Posted on: August 21, 2010 11:23 am

CUSA and MWC discuss BCS play-in and updated info

If this did happen, I could also see the Mountain West TV Network also expanding to cover C-USA games.  This would greatly help them make a profit with there network with the added TV markets that C-USA is in.

Since: Mar 15, 2008
Posted on: August 21, 2010 11:16 am

CUSA and MWC discuss BCS play-in and updated info

hey geneh...i hope you enjoy those GaTech season tickets this year! you've got some REALLY in demand and interesting games on the schedule....

South Carolina St, North Carolina St, Virginia, Middle Tennessee St, and Duke should be ELECTRIFYING entertainment!  ...LOL

serious question for ya.....WHY, when Ga. Tech knows they are stuck with that underwhelming ACC schedule, would they also schedule such horrible non conference  home games as well?  And why does the AJC never point out this obvious reason they cant sell tickets to their games?   oh well, at least parking shouldn't be a problem for ya!

Since: Aug 21, 2010
Posted on: August 21, 2010 10:30 am
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