BYU football: Cougars weigh independence; other sports in WAC

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  • Tuffy Parker
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:47 p.m.

    Three things to consider:

    1) The MWC is mess with or without BYU. Thompson's Mtn. "network" has been a complete disaster both from a $ and quality perspective. Now they've added two more teams who will share the same measly revenue??? Without the pie getting any bigger that makes absolutely no sense.

    2)Utah fans talk about the BYU arrogance but already act as if they have already won and will continue to win every PAC 12 championship. Oh, the irony...

    3)Anyone who thinks this, or for that matter, the entire conference alignment picture is finished is mistaken. This will continue to evolve - likely into a four super-conference scenario... BYU's positioning for that possible day is unaffected by conference affiliation or independence. Independence, in the meantime, means more control and more revenue.

  • manaen
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:10 p.m.

    So, here's a scenario:
    * BYU remains in the MWC for a couple more years,
    * BYU continues with Utah as our last game in 2011,
    * TCU beats BYU that year to win the MWC, with BYU placing second,
    * TCU's invitation to a BCS bowl sends BYU to the Las Vegas Bowl...
    * play the PAC's 8-5 Utah in back-to-back meetings -- the first time in this venerable rivalry that these teams have played each other twice in the same season.

  • rhalgic
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:47 p.m.

    A second note...

    Has anybody done the math yet on where the MWC stands on criterion 3 with the additions of Fresno State and Nevada? They've got to bring the conference's average up, right? Replacing the loss of Utah with Boise State was supposed to be a wash; does this get the MWC where it needed to be for BCS status?

  • rhalgic
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:43 p.m.

    I like Madden's comments above, and as a fan of BYU football, would agree. However, the MTN has GOT to go, and Craig Thompson with it. That network is a joke.

    I read all these comments about BYU having a tough time scheduling. You guys best catch-up on the recent news items. Going Independent, ESPN has already guaranteed BYU that it would be a very willing partner on at least 4 marquee games a year. BYU has locked schedules for the foreseeable future with Nevada, Fresno State, Boise State, Utah State and Hawaii -- regardless of conference affiliation. Independence would allow the flexibility to keep the rivalry with Utah and, dare I hope it, keep it in November (a la FSU and Florida) and televised nationally on ESPN (I mean, that would be marquee). Add games against other Independents, Notre Dame, Army, and Navy and the remaining 3 marquees -- that's a good season. And besides, Independence is a means, not an end.

    I think BYU's big consideration right now ought to be Men's Basketball. The team's looking really good and deserves a quality conference.

  • Mike W
    Aug. 19, 2010 2:05 p.m.

    Stay in the MWC BYU... the independent move is a huge mistake, and suicide for the lesser programs. Add Houston, and maybe add Tulsa if you can kill off Wyoming. Create a 12 team, two division conference with a west featuring BYU, Boise, Fresno, San Diego, UNLV and Nevada and an East featuring TCU, Houston, New Mexico, Air Force, CSU and Wyoming/Tulsa.

    I don't buy for a second that BYU will have some great schedule as an independent. I more have visions of Army, Navy, Louisiana Tech, Utah State, San Jose State and Hawaii to go with occasional matchups with Utah, Notre Dame, Boise... better off just staying where they are.

  • superute
    Aug. 19, 2010 1:34 p.m.

    This is hilarious. BYU just got worked by Craig Thompson.

    I DARE them to go independent in football and take their other sports to the WCC, which means they'd have to drop a few sports, and they'll be playing most of their away games in gymnasiums.

    BYU is what they are. A program that can't get special concessions from a bad MWC conference, and a program that isn't attractive enough for the BCS conferences. yet, their self-perception is that they're Notre Dame.
    That misallignment is much like their perception of being a relevant football program, even though both Jim Rome and Colin Cowherd reiterated today that they haven't been nationally relevant since 1984.

    As a Utah fan, I'm laughing all the way to Pasadena and $18 million a year . . .

  • Rob of NV
    Aug. 19, 2010 1:19 p.m.

    So many what ifs with all the news in the last two days. If CBSC wants a larger footprint, are they offering more money? If what Thompson said about expansion is true, then why have invitations not been extended to Houston, Tulsa, or UTEP. These teams sew up TX and OK. As the WAC implodes, perhaps even New Mexico State. The MWC does not need UT State, as some have suggested. In this case, the MWC will look like the old WAC 16-team super conference. Generally, I like the idea of independence. However, the WAC proposal I do not believe is a viable option now. Perhaps western basketball-only conferences such as West Coast or Big West may be other options. The concern about independence is bowl tie-ins at the end of the year. I think television and the BCS can be worked out. This will be interesting to see how it all plays out. In the end, I hope BYU has a better TV deal. They carry the MWC, even when other teams perform better (i.e. UT and TCU).

  • worf
    Aug. 19, 2010 1:11 p.m.

    BYU is to be commended for this bold move.It's this kind of spirit and determination which made America great. It exemplifies freedom and the American way. GO COUGS!

  • ConferenceofChampions
    Aug. 19, 2010 1:09 p.m.

    I think they should add the remaining 6 teams from the wac to the mwc and call the new conference "super-wac(k)"

    It's pretty descriptive of this entire situation

  • Carson
    Aug. 19, 2010 1:06 p.m.

    Like another poster stated,

    "BYU's jealousy at Utah joining the PAC-10/12 is driving this whole unfortunate set of circumstances".

  • ConferenceofChampions
    Aug. 19, 2010 12:54 p.m.

    This is a train wreck of epic perportions. Im so glad Utah is not caught up in this self inflicted mess. Nice due dilligence Holmoe.

  • Independent
    Aug. 19, 2010 12:33 p.m.

    What if Igualmente turned out to be the original source for all of this craziness? I would never trust internet again.

  • Tair20
    Aug. 19, 2010 11:56 a.m.

    Utah fans are an absolute joke. They reign down doom and gloom on BYU with no educational intelligence at all. Bottom line is this...Its obvious that losing Utah to the PAC 10 hurt the MWC. Even with BSU, the MWC is insignificant to the other BCS schools, just like the WAC. BYU got shunned by BCS conference expansion and left to fester in the deadend MWC.

    This possibility to go independent shook up the pot, which was sorely needed, and it worked. Notice FSU and UN are now apart of the MWC making it a now stronger league if BYU is convinced to stay. One more team and you have a 12 team league with a championship game, which will be difficult for the BCS to ignore for long.

    If BYU still goes independent, then it works to their advantage with revenue, scheduling flexibility and national exposure. They have the means and the following to do it. Also sets them up for when the Big XII comes calling, and don't pretend that they won't come calling. They will need 12 teams eventually to keep up with the SEC, Big 10, and PAC 12. Much better fit.

  • kevin4byu
    Aug. 19, 2010 11:44 a.m.

    Until some major proof is shown I won't trust anything about BYU heading to the Big-12. Lets hope for the best but not get ourselves carried away.

  • Swimmer
    Aug. 19, 2010 11:22 a.m.

    Explain to me how this is a good thing. They will no longer be playing for a conference championship; no longer playing for a BCS championship (don't kid yourselves. If they can't make it within the MWC they won't make it as an independent--just look at how successful Notre Dame as been). You can't tell me that BYU players are going to be excited to be appearing on BYU TV.

    So with all of those incentives taken away, how does Bronco keep his players motivated? This is not just a dumb idea. It is stupid. It will kill recruiting. How do you sell a program that plays for no championships and no automatic bowls?

    Stay in the MWC. It is getting better with the addition of Boise. BYU should work on improving its product and see if they become more attractive to the Big 12 or Big 10. But I think BYU should work on improving the MWC and make it an AQ conference.

    Utah's move may be monetarily beneficial but consistent 7-5, 8-4 and 6-6 seasons will not keep the fan base happy. Vegas Bowl, here they come.

  • Igualmente
    Aug. 19, 2010 11:15 a.m.

    Just got a tweet..
    TCU and BYU are going to the Big 12,
    replacing CU and Neb. Big-time football arrives in Provo with Longhorns and Sooners coming in every so often..sweet!

  • The Deuce
    Aug. 19, 2010 11:08 a.m.

    Talk about throwing the rest of your sports teams under the bus. BYU as an independent in football is at best risky. Stay in the MWC and prove you can beat Boise State and TCU first. There are other sports programs at BYU that are nationally ranked and this throws them into a worse position. Recruiting will suffer. I want to hear from Coach Rose and the basketball program. You gain nothing scheduling Utah State in football. Restructure the MTN TV deal and work here first. Prove yourself on the field in football against the competition you already have then look at your options. My guess is that looking at 3rd place in the MWC in football is not that good of a view. You know what they say about a cattle drive, "if you are not the lead cow the view is always the same."

  • Duh
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:57 a.m.

    Sure if funny listening to the Ute fans rant on this blog and BYU hasn't done anything yet. Why would they rant here if they don't have anything to do with the MWC anyhow? BYU will always do what's in their best interest and if this is, then they'll do it. I am sure this is not a knee jerk reaction like many are talking about. Who knows, this could have just been a ploy to lure Nevada and Fresno State to the league. Funny how some think this is the end to BYU football. What a bunch of dorks. They can only see what is in front of their noses. BYU does not make moves unless it has thought it out very carefully. We will be fine either way.

  • sundance
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:55 a.m.

    I think the WAC and MWC should join and split teams geographically into two divisions. Allow BYU to have its own TV contract -- same as Texas in their league deal. The BCS can't reject a champion from all WAC + MWC teams and still have any credibility whatsoever.

  • Tuffy Parker
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:52 a.m.

    Three things to consider:

    1) The MWC is mess with or without BYU. Thompson's Mtn. "network" has been a complete disaster both from a $ and quality perspective. Now they've added two more teams who will share the same measly revenue??? Without the pie getting any bigger that makes absolutely no sense.

    2)Utah fans talk about the BYU arrogance but already act as if they have already won and will continue to win every PAC 12 championship. Oh, the irony...

    3)Anyone who thinks this, or for that matter, the entire conference alignment picture is finished is mistaken. This will continue to evolve - likely into a four super-conference scenario... BYU's positioning for that possible day is unaffected by conference affiliation or independence. Independence, in the meantime, means more control and more revenue.

  • That Makes Sense
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:50 a.m.

    If BYU can schedule Army, Navy, Notre Dame, Utah, and Utah State every year. Then get one or two BCS games with eastern schools like Florida State or Penn State to kick off each season. Then add a few patsies who need the money to fill out the schedule, they would have every argument for a BCS bowl and, in some years, an argument for a BCS championship with a perfect season.

    They keep ALL the revenue from TV deals and bowl appearances. They broaden the exposure of BYU (the stated mission of the program) to a world audience. They don't travel to Laramie in the middle of winter or put up with bigotry in the pit.

    Then, they align with the WCC which will strengthen their men's basketball standing (the only other non-money-losing sport at BYU), and they will be aligned with other private universities that are also mission driven. And traveling to CA and WA to play in the WCC is sweet for the athletes. And they televise it all for everyone to see thus promoting BYU's image and the image of other religious universities...

    Am I missing something here?

  • Bugoff
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:48 a.m.

    Scheduling is also less problematic than thought. The WAC can provide 4-5 games. BSU will "play anyone, any time". Utah will be under local pressure to keep the rivalry. A BYU/AF game makes a nice ESPN draw. Ditto for Army and Navy.

    That leaves a about 3-4 games from BCS conferences. BYU has been doing a couple of those anyway each year. The SOS will likely be better than most BCS contenders.

    This is very doable. ESPN can be counted on to provide a couple of really good money making national interest games.

    BYU has to win on the national stage. That is the hardest part.

    However, just being on the national stage instead of buried in obscurity will help the recruiting. BYU will start getting a lot more speed and specialty non member athletes who will keep the standards.

    The MTN is not going to serve BYU's long run goals. It just does not have the capability.

  • BYUBlue65
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:38 a.m.

    Their schedule will be BETTER.
    More exposure.
    More excitement.
    Better TV coverage.
    Better BCS chances.
    More $.

    What's not to like?

    I'll take my three Utah letter jackets and cheer for the Y again...since 1965!

  • Tuffy Parker
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:37 a.m.

    Gotta love the Ute fans or perhaps more accurately, BYU haters - First they rip the Cougars for being left in the MWC. Now the Y makes a bold move and the same folks are jabbering about how arrogant or stupid it is. How does one get to be so myopic in perspective?

  • Independent
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:36 a.m.

    Independence in football and the WCC for everything else looks really good. So the MWC added Nevada and Fresno St? Big deal. It may ruin the WAC, but it doesn't make the MWC any better. When BYU goes independent in football, the MWC will have to wind up taking even more teams from the WAC, making it one big joke of a conference like the old 16-team WAC that failed miserably. There is no reason BYU should have to put up with The Mountain tv deal. There's no reason they should have to keep playing teams like UNLV and Colorado State in football. If the WCC is willing to take on BYU's other sports, BYU should jump on it.

  • Ernest T. Bass
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:35 a.m.

    How does this possibly create more exposure for byu? I realize The Mtn's footprint in limited but not many people outside of Utah are going to tune in to byu-tv, who aren't already byu fans. And those fans likely already have a network that gets The Mtn.
    I do not see how this creates more exposure for byu and even if is does, it's not going to expand their limited recruiting pool.

  • Otis Spurlock
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:33 a.m.

    It's a great time to be a Ute and a member of the elite Conference of Champions.

    It's too bad that BYU doesn't have someone of Chris Hill's caliber running the show.

  • Tommy2Shoes
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:33 a.m.

    Still laughing about these scenarios. Life long Cougar fan hopes we stay in the MWC and convince Houston to come on in.

    Rivalries area based
    BYU vrs BSU
    TCU Houston
    SDS Fresno
    UNLV Reno
    Wyoming CSU
    AFA New Mexico

    6 team alignments
    BYU, BSU, SDS, Fresno, UNLV, Reno

    TCU, Houston, Wyoming, CSU, AFA, New Mexico

    Conference Championship
    Hold it at the top ranked school, guarantees a sellout.

    The basketball league will be pretty strong as well. Baseball will be strengthened with FSU.

    I like it. Let's do it.

  • Madden
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:26 a.m.


    Seriously. A MWC with 11-12 teams cannot do a full round-robin in football. So schedule each year based on the prior year, with all the top teams still playing each other and the bottom teams playing each other, without cross-over.

    That means BSU, TCU and BYU would NOT HAVE TO PLAY THE WEAK teams every year. It would significantly bolster their computer and human rankings. Eventually, this probably leads to relegating or branching out and forming another strong league, dropping the weakest members.

    Aug. 19, 2010 10:16 a.m.

    I've read about two dozen spins on this story, and anyone of them might be true. However, the bottom line is this, if BYU wants to have success in the next few years and beyond as an independent (football) they MUST win their games this year to get the respect going from the BCS teams they want to play in the future. That means beating FS, TCU and Utah all on their fields. If this happens, BYU could write their storybook ending as they want.

  • Bugoff
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:14 a.m.

    You just don't get it. The MTN is NEVER going to be a BCS conference. It's TV contract has no value. BYU has no better option than going independent.

    BYU and Utah had home attendance of 64000 and 45000. That leaves TCU with 45000 as the flagship. They might wise up and make a move.

    BSU left an opening with ESPN by joining the MTN. BYU has jumped on a national TV opportunity that gets EVERY one of their games (including minor sports) on national/international TV.

    BYU exposure takes a quantum leap. The recruiting improves. They make more money. They can upgrade the schedule by replacing Intermountain teams with medium BCS teams around the country.

    BYU finally drops the regional myopic shackles. It is not a Utah or regional team.

    If independence does not work then BYU joins the WAC. How well did that serve BSU? Very well.

    This is a big winner for BYU. The risk is less than thought (BSU in the WAC). The MTN was NEVER going to serve BYU's best interest because it CAN'T.

    Utah bolted why should not BYU?

  • Observation-ist
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:14 a.m.

    There is an abundance of arrogance and a durth of facts swirling around today. The 'haters' have more fodder and the 'fans' have questions and hope. The more things change, the more they stay the same. The only real questions is ... are you a BYU FAN or a HATER.

    Haters ... get a life beyond hating BYU or you'll have a sour, weened on a pickle life.

    Fans ... don't become a UofU hater. The venom's not worth the effects. GO BYU!

  • Coug
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:58 a.m.

    Once the dust settles, the WCC might be a player in this story. Here is a little background on this conference. They have 8 schools in their league, and are all religiously affiliated, like BYU. The schools are:

    Institution Location Enrollment

    Gonzaga University Spokane, WA6,375

    Loyola Marymount Univ Los Angeles8,300

    Pepperdine University Malibu, CA8,000

    University of Portland Portland, OR3,300

    Saint Mary's College Moraga, CA4,768

    University of San Diego San Diego CA7,548

    Univ of San Francisco San Francisco8,000

    Santa Clara University Santa Clara8,377

    "The Conference is characterized its unique emphasis on combining excellence in athletics with academics, and is built on the foundation of values, character, and academics."

    These values are compatible with those at BYU. At first glance one may overlook this little conference, but a second look might create an intriguing consideration.

  • SportzFan
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:52 a.m.

    Who do you play in November? Army, Navy, Notre Dame.

    Who do you play in September and October? Utah, Utah State, Boise State, TCU -- teams that want their games SEEN.

    Who else to you play in Sept and Oct? Texas, Florida State, Ohio State -- anyone who wants their games broadcast WORLD WIDE on ESPN AND BYU's network.

    I'm just sayin'

  • JustintimeY
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:41 a.m.

    Craig Thompson is playing hard ball with both BYU and the WAC. It looks like the MWC and the WAC are in all out war and the loser will be left in shambles. BYU now has a very hard decison to make now that Thompson has Nevada and Fresno St coming over. Now more mouths to feed with 11 teams they will need to go to 12 teams to have a conference championship game. Going Independent is a huge risk and could leave all the other programs at BYU in a very weak WAC. Football is king but the Basketball team should also be considered. 4 MWC teams made the NCAA tournament last year, the WAC had 1. We will see who has the better poker hand when all is said and done.

  • GoJazz
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:36 a.m.

    Way to go BYU!!! You are now back in the WAC!! The U upgraded to the PAC-12 and BYU downgraded to the WAC. Yes BYU fans you went to the WAC, all of your athletic programs are going to play in the WAC therefore you are a WAC team. Don't tell me your Football team is independent when 5 of its games are with WAC teams. BYU just joined the WAC.

  • ConferenceofChampions
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:32 a.m.

    So glad Im a Utah fan. This is a debacle of epic perportion. Who's running the ship down there?

  • CougarGrad07
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:22 a.m.

    I'm a BYU alum and have been a HUGE fan my whole life (and will continue to be), but this is the worst idea EVER to come out of BYU!

  • espnfan
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:16 a.m.

    Nice move by Thompson to pick up Reno and Fresno, that makes BYU's decision a little bit tougher.

    While going independent might help with revenue and exposure it won't make BYU a better football team.

    I don't think independence will have a major impact on recruiting. BYU already has abundant exposure nationwide. In fact, if they end up filling their schedule with WAC leftovers recruiting might start falling off especially with in-state kids that could play in the Pac 10 with Utah.

    I don't really see independence as a fast path to the BCS. If they win in the MWC they'll get to a BCS bowl just the same as in an independent scenario (ask TCU and Utah - then ask Army and Navy).

    If it makes financial sense and allows the church-run school to be independent from Sunday games etc. then I think it's justified, but I don't see it as a move that benefits the football program in a major way.

  • kevin4byu
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:15 a.m.

    Thompson has already noted that there will be not be any changes to the current broadcasting agreement until it is up in 2016. This means that as long as BYU is in the MWC, the option to broadcast the games will not be an option. The MWC conference needs BYU in football more than BYU needs the MWC. The other sports need a conference so even a toned down WAC might be better since the other sports are irrelevant in the big scheme of things. Rumors about moving the other sports to the WCC are starting up but all I know is they have a decent top of the league in Basketball, don't know about the lower part or other sports....can someone shed some light on that?

  • Newspaperreader
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:12 a.m.

    Seems like a rather knee-jerk, "we've gotta do something, no matter what it is" move by BYU in reaction to Utah moving to the Pac-12. A conference affiliation is the best situation for all BYU sports. Essentially rejoining the WAC in all sports but football is a step backward. BYU ought to remain in the MWC for now, especially with Fresno State, Nevada, and Boise State coming on board.

  • John20000
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:04 a.m.

    Going independent in football is a bit more arrogance than I would expect from BYU. Is this pride before a fall? Or is this brillant? I guess time will tell.

  • UU702
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:01 a.m.

    Just wondering...if all these also ran schools are so desperate to play byu why did Nevada and Fresno State bolt in a matter of hours when it appeared byu would likely be regularly scheduling them?

    Personally I don't think UNLV, SDSU, etc. have much interest in going to a league on life support. Finally, if byu has no other option than going to the WCC (no football) what will their late season schedule look like? Teams in the midst of conference championship races probably won't be interested in an excursion to provo and playing irrelevent teams will quickly drop byu from the spot light. Seems like a very risky proposition.

  • VegasCoug
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:51 a.m.


    Go independent in football and join the West Coast Conference in all other sports. WCC commish Jamie Zaninovich has reached out to BYU, according to ESPN's Andy Katz. This would be awesome. All of the schools in the WCC are private religious institutions, so BYU would fit in so perfectly there. All of the markets they would be playing in have heavy LDS populations. WCC hoops is very strong, and a great rivalry with Gonzaga would emerge.

    Oh, by the way, the WCC already has a great TV deal with ESPN...

    WCC.... make that happen Holmoe!!!

  • Jonathan Eddy
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:46 a.m.

    BYU's upcoming declaration of independence will be the greatest step forward for a storied football program and a huge leap for a university whose mission statement has always remained intact. It's good to see organizations that aren't swayed by the winds of popular opinion. Go Cougs!

  • ConferenceofChampions
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:46 a.m.

    Whos in charge down there? This is a mess of epic proportion. Did Holmoe do his dd? Looks like this whole game of poker is about to backfire in his face. So glad we have Chris Hill in charge at the U

  • Madden
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:39 a.m.

    O the drama!

    Some serious math needs to be done regarding the BCS review process. If the MWC has a legit shot at becoming a member of the money party, BYU should certainly stay. If the MWC will allow member schools more flexibility in getting out their own TV coverage (since the Mtn is pathetic) that might be enough to keep BYU in too.

    Right now, BYU is still the biggest earning team in the conference and now they are slicing up the small pie even more...all the MWC did today was make the WAC worse, and the MWC at best marginally better.

    Big 12 = BYU ideal landing spot in a few years. Indpendence + MWC in other sports is 2nd. Otherwise, stay at home Cougars.

  • CBPapa
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:26 a.m.

    Creative1 - I think what you meant to say was: "Buy! Buy! football relevance at BYU"
    I know I'm "buying" into this independence notion.

  • williary
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:13 a.m.

    WAC? What WAC? Pay attention folks. There are now 6 teams in the WAC. The best of the bunch being....Idaho? Hawaii? You want to stick your sports there?

    Independence for football, with other sports playing in the WAC, made sense. More money from football, a group of 7 WAC teams to help fill in late-season scheduling issues, a much worse conference for other sports but still a conference non the less to help with scheduling those events.

    With the WAC being blown up, where does BYU turn? WCC? Disband all other sports? All sports cannot be independent, that's been made pretty clear. So now what? Crawl back to the MWC it looks like.

    BYU got outsmarted by the most unlikely suspect, one CRAIG THOMPSON. He destroyed the WAC, leaving BYU nowhere to go. BYU was either set on leaving, or trying to show the clout they think they have, and both got a nice swift kick to the chin by Thompson. Take your place at the MWC table, and be quiet, and keep fighting for 3d place behind TCU and Boise.

  • Jimmy James
    Aug. 19, 2010 7:16 a.m.

    With the WAC now only going to have 6 teams, it will be interesting to see how things shake out. While I'm sure that the WAC will find two new teams to add (at least I hope they can), I wonder if that will change how much BYU wants to affiliate with them?

    While BYU going independent might end up being an awesome thing for them (but maybe not), my personal hope is that BYU stays in the MWC and that the MWC adds one more team to bring it to 12 teams which means: Conference Championship! (Perhaps the MWC could swing a deal where BYU still gets to broadcast games on BYU TV?)

    And as long as I'm dreaming of things that probably won't happen, I would like that 12th team to be Utah State. It geographically makes a ton of sense, they're a strong basketball school, and their football program is on the rise. (I'm a big believer in what Gary Anderson is doing / capable of doing.)

    Granted, as football drives the Benjamins, I bet that in such a scenario the MWC goes for Houston.

  • Creative1
    Aug. 19, 2010 6:37 a.m.

    By- By- football relevence at BYU....

  • Steven S Jarvis
    Aug. 19, 2010 6:23 a.m.


    Must be a Ute fan.

    Independence is the beginning of a new era for BYU and is long overdue. I hope they connect to the WCC for the other sports. But for football, BYU has its own destiny in its hands.

    Going independent will mean more exposure and better scheduling. It also means that BYU might still be able to schedule the Utes on a yearly basis (though I was hoping for a year or two break so things can calm down). I would expect Utah, Utah St. yearly, Notre Dame and Navy more and a smattering of SEC, B10, B12 and PAC teams. The only bad teams that would be on the schedule would be the close regional ones. Hopefully the Utes won't be one of the bad games.

  • What's up?
    Aug. 19, 2010 6:22 a.m.

    Interesting to think that there might be no MWC teams in Utah.

  • JMT
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:32 a.m.

    When you consider the dynamics of BYU football, from a 70,000 seat football stadium, an LDS base nationwide that includes athletes desperate to play for the team, and a very long traditional of competition...this is just the beginning of BYU football.

    I hope they go independent. The downside, they don't get to play for a championship? I remember the year BYU played Wyoming in the WAC Championship in Vegas. They beat them, did nothing to enhance the bowl they went to and ruined Ituli Mili's knee on a bad tackle. If they create a four conference super league BYU is just as likely to get an invite as an independent, as they would a member of the MWC. And in a four conference super league zero chance (ZERO) the the MWC is one of those four conferences. If anything BYU, TCU and Boise St are raided. Going independent doesn't change this a bit.

    And BYU plays in front of 150 million TV sets, with ESPN helping in transition with some games like Norte Dame on CBS...hmmmm

    Do it!

  • DRay
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:19 a.m.

    I could see a possible switch, with UNLV, SDSU, BYU going to WAC, as Boise, Nev, FSU go over to the MWC...if Y has decided to go independent in just football, it would be exciting for Y fans, and great to see them taking total responsibility for their own program, that being what the LDS Church has long preached, "self-reliance" and freedom from being controlled, "act, instead of being acted upon."..........another possibility might be eventual new MWC by increasing to a "super-league" with, say, 16 teams, 2 divisions, made up of the best MWC & WAC teams. Of all the teams, considering all sports, BYU is top of the class. Money generated by going independent would also be a plus for a Church school whose mission is to reach out worldwide its influence to increase the good and give more choice to as many as possible.

  • utefan4life
    Aug. 19, 2010 2:58 a.m.

    This didn't shake up the college football world at all. Maybe the city of Provo and the rest of the zoobs state wide. They would be playing teams in the WAC, thus still not proving anything as far as becoming a dominant force in college football. They still would get rocked once they faced a half decent opponent and their recruiting base just got smaller. Great move cougars. FYI Boise State and TCU have been to a BCS game Utah State hasn't and probably never will. Your competition is becoming more pathetic.

  • Cajunzoobie
    Aug. 19, 2010 2:34 a.m.

    This is the beginning of the start of BYU Football!

    BYU will remain in the MWC with the announcement of Fresno and UNR joining the league. The WAC is history, as Hawaii will be going independent, LaTech joining CUSA, and Utah State or UTEP being invited into the MWC to round-out a 12-team league.

    The MWC's new CBSC contract will give weekly exposure in more homes across the country via Dish and DirecTV.

    BCS qualifying is also in the mix for the new-enlarged MWC.

    With TCU's Gary Patterson hinting of more teams moving around the country, BYU will be staying in the MWC as things unfold.

    Go Cougars!

  • acrolight12
    Aug. 19, 2010 2:24 a.m.

    This is potentially a HUGE improvement for BYU Athletics, assuming every piece falls in order. If ESPN and the BCS are willing to help BYU go independent as far as scheduling and broadcasting and as well as allowing BYU the chance to play in a BCS bowl game, then there is nothing wrong with this move. Financially BYU can do it, that's not holding them back right now. What concerns me is the potential to be locked out of the parties, (which when you look at it, that is where we are right now and will be for the next 2 years). I look forward to hearing the new developments and will watch closely

  • Canadiandy
    Aug. 19, 2010 2:17 a.m.


    Finally BYU can take control of its own destiny.

    No more MTN. No more being punished for not playing Sundays.

    Army, Navy, Notre Dame, and now BYU.

    That's thinking outside the box!

    Aug. 19, 2010 2:15 a.m.

    Classic Utah County business practice of a pyramid scheme. Nice to see BYU got caught in it and are now in a seriously bad position. WAC is no more and BYU is done.

  • Drailed
    Aug. 19, 2010 1:45 a.m.

    Utah moves to the Pac 10 and BYU basically moves to the WAC (if rumors are true). I know their football team will be Independent, but with all their other teams in the WAC, it pretty much makes them a WAC team. I wouldn't be surprised if the majority of their games would be against WAC teams when they do their schedule.

    Maybe that is BYU's plan, to purposely fail at being independent so they can move back to the WAC. Now with BSU gone, it will be easy for them to dominate that conference and finally get into a BCS game lol. I am sure by then USU will be dominating them.

  • idablu
    Aug. 19, 2010 1:32 a.m.

    I think the football team will be OK. But having a son who is a student athlete in another sport at BYU, I worry how he'll be affected now that there is no stable conference to affiliate with. The WAC looks like they might implode. Then what are all the non football sports playing for if there is no conference?

    I think this a huge gamble that might pay off but might fizzle out altogether.

  • Coug
    Aug. 19, 2010 1:24 a.m.

    Re: Stenar

    What evidence do you base your analysis on? Is it just a feeling you have, or it's based on factual merit. I'd love to understand the epistemology of your argument on the demise of BYU football.

  • Terry
    Aug. 19, 2010 1:19 a.m.

    No brainer, 5 x the money, 5 x the exposure and if for any reason it does not work out, they have their pick of WAC and MWC anytime they ever want to go back!

    BYU just has to help bolster the WAC and pull some teams along with them that want to keep their BYU rivalry going! SD State, UNLV, BSU, heck even TCU, Houston and UTEP might follow if promised consistent games year in and out with BYU along with a true National audience on TV!! If even a couple of those follow, Fresno and Nevada may reconsider! Perhaps they could just raid Conf. USA for SMU, Rice and UTEP, but I like the idea of sticking it to Craig Thompson, that guy is a horrible commish and needs to be FIRED!

  • BYU 99
    Aug. 19, 2010 1:04 a.m.

    This is an agressive move by BYU that says we're going to be independent unless a better deal comes quickly: Option 1: I doubt the Big 12 is going to ask them to join the Big 12 but that would be a better move. Option 2; BYU stays with the Mountain West with a more favorable TV deal with the MWC. This is something similar to what Texas did when offered an invitation to the PAC 10 and they improved their TV revenue. I'll bet BYU is wanting a sweet deal, they'll get it and stay put.
    Option 3: They go independent and get a chance to play whoever they want and have their own network to get revenue and national respect as they play Notre Dame, PAC 10 schools, Big 12 schools, Utah and Utah State.

  • So Cal Living
    Aug. 19, 2010 1:02 a.m.

    .... or the beginning of life on a bigger stage.

  • Stenar
    Aug. 19, 2010 12:43 a.m.

    This is the beginning of the end for BYU football.