What was spoken of for some time as simply a football-only cooperation has now become a full blown new league. The Mountain West Conference and Conference USA have both announced that they will be forming a new league that will encompass all sports.
The merger/co-op was originally announced in October of last year, but now that even more teams have left each conference, it was beginning to make sense that the two get together. The new conference will include 15 permanent teams, with Hawaii playing football only (making that 16 in football, the most of any D1 conference) and could become a reality prior to the 2013-2014 season.
The conference is looking to eventually expand to anywhere between 18-24 teams, as schools such as Utah State (WAC), Florida International (Sun Belt), and New Mexico State (WAC). The schools will vote on whether or not to accept the proposal in the coming weeks, they’ll also decide on a name.
One of the big proposals of the league is to have a short, NCAA Basketball style, playoff for their conference champion. It will more than likely be two rounds (semi-final and then finals), and will more than likely (speculation on my part) shorten the CUSA/MWC regular season to 11 games with the 12th game the semi-final and the 13th the conference championship.
What do you think? We knew that “super-conferences” would be forming soon, and it seems as if all the remaining little guys formed together to create one gigantic league. It seems as if they’re finally acknowledging that they won’t make a BCS bid or playoff so it’s in their best interest to form their own mini-league and a mini-playoff. Smart on their end in my opinion, what’s yours?