“The Future–Mountain West Conference-SDSU”
I wonder where all these rumors are going to lead us to.
Boise State and San Diego State are the two best football teams in the Mountain West Conference.
You know the conference that gets very little respect nationwide. The one that has quality programs, which upset some big name teams, from Power 5-Conferences, but yet gets zero recognition.
Boise State won at Florida State. The Aztecs beat down UCLA. Wyoming nailed Missouri. Air Force trashed Colorado. San Jose State, of all people, won at Arkansas. Hawaii took out Arizona. Even UNLV won on the road, at Vanderbilt.
And yet it has cause no ripple at all in the football rankings, no conversation about any of these teams being the player in the Group of 5-nominee to play on New Year’s Day. It’s like it never happened.
Is it time for San Diego State to consider doing something different with its football program.
I ask that a day after Air Force coach Troy Calhoun went public saying maybe the Falcons don’t need to be in the MWC, and they might be better served to be somewhere else, like Army, or maybe with Navy, or maybe an independent.
A new Aztecs Stadium is on line, with a target date of 2022. A huge step forward in the image of a very good football program, led by a very good man.
SDSU’s football program is (76-36) under the leadership of Rocky Long. It beats some of the big boys, wins tons of games, and goes to Bowl games each December.
But even in our football mad community of San Diego, it does not create electricity.
What to do, whee to go?
They cannot become an independent like Brigham Young, which has fallen off the national radar since they vacated the Mountain West-WAC years ago in the last massive conference shakeup.
They are not wanted in the PAC-12 Conference, who added Utah-Colorado when all the conferences in the country were cherry-picking teams.
The wildcard in all this might be what is happening in the Midlands. The Big 12-Conference is privately talking expansion, adding two teams. Does it make sense for either SDSU or the conference?
Expansion now is all about TV sets and ratings.
When the last shuffling took place, the Big 12 didn’t come out a winner. They lost the historical flagship team, Nebraska, to the Big 10, then added West Virginia to replace them. A strange geographical swap.
But if expansion these days is all about TV sets, why would Morgantown, and why would the Mountain State make any sense.
So now the Big 12 needs to catch up with the other Power Five leagues, and they need two teams to do it.
There has always been a hidden fear Boise State would leave the Mountain West. Would Brigham Young’s national heritage be the perfect second team, or are there not enough TV sets in Utah to make it worthwhile, despite the BYU football legacy?
San Diego State brings the 16th biggest market in the country to the table as a negotiating chip. The Aztecs bring a big recruiting base for Big 12-schools to concentrate on. The Red & Black ‘s next door neighbor, the LA TV-market would be part of the lure for TV ratings and recruitment of talent.
The city of San Diego is a melting pot of sports fans. The silent alumni, and the newly landed residents would get excited to see Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas and other quality programs come into town. Better than anything they can see from Wyoming, USU, Nevada, Hawaii etc..etc.
Think a Big 12-calling card wouldn’t help open recruiting doors across Southern California?.
The Big 12-shares some 42M-in in TV pie right now per school. The Mountain West check that arrives this fall is worth just 1.1M to San Diego State. Those paydays make a big difference in operating Division 1-athletic programs.
Leadership at SDSU hopes to make this a 50,000 student enrollment university when the front porch campus construction is done by 2025 in Mission Valley.. Wouldn’t membership in the Big 12-drive fundraising, not only with football support, but in terms of campus-wide fund raising.
John David Wicker, the guiding light in the football stadium construction project, needs to shoot for the moon, a Big 12-affiliation, rather than keep his program in the sub-orbit of the small potatoes Mountain West.
Big 12-meet your expansion partners in the Mountains at Boise State, and on the beaches on the West Coast, San Diego State.
Why not? Why not the Broncos and Aztecs?