BYU football: Holmoe: 'Things are playing out'

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  • Psyphile
    Aug. 21, 2010 10:17 p.m.

    The best, most relevant comment on here was made by SilverGeo9 (10:17 p.m. Aug. 19, 2010). Sports is exciting -- witness all the comments here -- but this has deeper roots.

  • Wally West
    Aug. 21, 2010 3:46 p.m.

    re: BYUBlue65 | 3:03 p.m. Aug. 19, 2010

    "With our football talent, and some experience, let's say we get a great schedule - run the table - and Utah fans get to watch the TDS play for the national championship."

    Even prior to the war kittyz road trips to Tallahassee & Ft Worth, your ideal scenario was eloquently summed by Steven Tyler years ago, "Dream on."

  • Utah Man in Wisconsin
    Aug. 21, 2010 2:36 p.m.

    Loved what Holmoe said about respecting your rival ... it is self evident that both Utah and BYU have risen from competing hard with one another. I hope that even the 'off their rockers haters' on both sides of the argument deep down recognize that they respect their opponent - otherwise 'the big game' would be just another game against Colorado State.

  • fballfan
    Aug. 20, 2010 9:42 p.m.

    I can't believe all the myopic comments from BYU fans. You should be embarrassed and appalled at what Holmoe tried to do. It's fine that BYU wants out of the MTN West, but to be collusive and underhanded is not the picture BYU should be painting to the rest of the world. Don't compromise yourself just because you are a big BYU fan.

  • Cougarista
    Aug. 20, 2010 12:32 p.m.

    As a Cougar fan it certainly is nice to sit back and watch BYUs possibilities after having beaten the team up north so often. The tun will be a perpetual middle of the pack team in the PAC-10, just as they had a 3rd place finish last season in the MWC.

  • LAJazzFan
    Aug. 20, 2010 10:29 a.m.

    One final consideration (as a BYU fan and member of the LDS church with egg on his face), the remaining 9 teams (LaTech would replace Houston in C-USA) could join either the WAC or MWC (whichever made the most financial sense) and their football programs and athletic depts would not irreversibly suffer or die. They would be on par with C-USA for football, and a 1 team NCAAB bid conference.

  • LAJazzFan
    Aug. 20, 2010 10:22 a.m.

    One last consideration, less than two months ago, the Big East was facing the same potential problem that the WAC is now- being raided and becoming irrelevant/annihialated. This Superconference would bring stability for all of the reasons indicated in my prior post.

  • LAJazzFan
    Aug. 20, 2010 10:20 a.m.

    To elaborate on the Big East Superconference idea (not mine alone):
    Why Would Big East be Interested?
    1) Respect: the Big East is viewed as inferior by the other BCS conferences, altough their BCS record indicates otherwise. Adding a Western Division of teams including BSU, TCU and BYU bolster that image.
    2) Reveunue: each Big East team gets about $3.5M per year in tv money. Other BCS teams get $10-$20M per year. The expanded conference would be worth a huge tv contract.

    Schedule?: The Eastern Division and Western Divisions play each of their 7 teams. There is a two game cross play between divisions and a championship game. That leaves 3 out of conference games.

    Why Western Teams Would do It?- Obvious.

    New TV contract with ESPN/ABC, and/or other networks. BYU TV could create the equivalent of the Big Ten network for the new conference (major cha ching) and still broadcast its non-ESPN/national network games. BYU gets the money and the exposure (across the nation) that it seeks.

  • jcholman
    Aug. 20, 2010 9:58 a.m.

    Uh what is he suppose to say? Well we didn’t anticipate the MWC raiding and putting the WAC on life support so now we need to have a contingency plan. I will say this even if they come back to the MWC the conference will be improved from where they were Monday. But don’t act like this was the master plan.

  • LAJazzFan
    Aug. 20, 2010 9:49 a.m.

    I see two best possibilities:

    1) form a new football conference with the best 8 teams and media markets (BYU, BSU, AFA, TCU, Houston, UNLV, New Mexico, SDSU) and join the Big East for football only. Then keep the 8 team conference for all other sports. This brings stability and a hugely lucrative contract to the Big East, brings all of the BCS non-AQ teams into the BCS, and makes a great basketball conference too.

    2) Stay with an expanded MWC having Houston and demand that at the end of the BCS cycle (2012) that if there are 2-3 teams that drag the MWC below the AQ threshold, that they get kicked out of the conference (they can help the WAC survive). If you remove the bottom 2-3 teams the math works for AQ inclusion which has recently been made public and the BCS will have to abide by it. The $18M per year BCS money will tide you over until a new TV arrangement can be had. If BYU can leverage getting some TV concessions now to stay in, even better, although much of their leverage evaporated when NV and FSU accepted the invites.

  • redandwhite
    Aug. 20, 2010 7:55 a.m.

    How about a whole new conference. The best of Mtn West the best of the Wac and the best of Conf USA. New name and new tv contract. This would have to be bcs quality.

  • CKS007
    Aug. 20, 2010 7:05 a.m.

    Any school with integrity would be looking at any option to get out of the Mountain West as soon as possible.

  • Terry
    Aug. 20, 2010 1:36 a.m.

    #1 ESPN can broker high quality BCS teams for BYU to play on national TV, so that is not a problem. Texas, Notre Dame, Navy, Oregon State on the schedule just to name a few. ESPN also owns several bowls so they can finally get something better than the crappy Vegas Bowl!!!

    Stay tuned cougar fans, BYU might get their revenge on Hair Thompson after all. ESPN is brokering a mega conference with the best of the MWC, WAC and Houston and UTEP that will be good enough for AQ status (get rid of the bottom feeders) AND will have a great TV DEAL! Then for all the naysayers and to that lame excuse for a conference commish Thompson, I can just say HA HA HA! :)

  • optimist
    Aug. 20, 2010 1:32 a.m.

    This of this for the New Conference of Independants:

    1. Notre Dame A. Army
    2. BYU B. Navy
    3 TCU C. Air force

    4. Baylor D. Boise State
    5. SMU E. Houston

    BYU would start the non conference season vs. Pac 12
    Utah and end the season with new rival Notre Dame.
    Let the two remaining non conference games be vs. BCS Washington State type teams.

  • optimist
    Aug. 20, 2010 1:20 a.m.

    My suggestion for a schedule if we go independent with our Football. See a 12 game schedule below:

  • optimist
    Aug. 20, 2010 1:17 a.m.

    If we go Independent, we would rather be treated like Notre Dame with the BCS tie in, than to be treated like Army and Navy without that prestigious tie in to the BCS.

    We want the respect that Notre Dame gets by playing it's core games against the BCS Big 10, plus Army and Navy that are the other independents and the other games, like their annual visit to USC and either UCLA, Stanford, or other Pac 10 BCS teams.

    Do we realy expect the same respect if our 6 core games come from the WAC, a conference below the MWC?
    Is this logical thinking???

    We broke out of the WAC 10+ years ago to form a more powerful MWC taking only the best of the
    WAC. Do we really want to use them for our core 6 games each year??? I think not!!!

    If we want the respect that Notre Dame has, we must play the quality teams that they play.

    My next post below, will give you my suggestion.
    Please look for the next optimist post. Thank you.

  • mr. ideas
    Aug. 20, 2010 12:41 a.m.

    There is a rumor that byu has scheduled a one and one next fall with the kearns mighty-might "B" team to compliment their WAC schedule. Is this true?!!!

  • DEW Cougars
    Aug. 20, 2010 12:10 a.m.

    they will come - Field of Dreams II. ESPN home and away games. That is stupid when MWC won't allow to show games on campus - so stupid!

  • 1984 for life
    Aug. 19, 2010 11:10 p.m.

    Boomer- Let us know when the Lobos start playing football. It will be New Mexico, Wyoming, and CSU that keep the MWC out of the BCS. That one win a year that the Lobos contribute to the conference's won loss record is REALLY helpful. One game a year against New Mexico State in the WAC is looking better and better.

  • dallascoug
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:57 p.m.

    redandwhite has a good idea i agree with that statement.
    its not gonna happen but it would be cool.
    byu is not going to leave until someone invites them, if that ever happens.

  • SportsFan
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:40 p.m.

    "So, Utah moves to a new conference but manages to leave a strong foundation in place for the MWC. BYU attempts the same thing they leave a path of destruction behind them? Why is that??"

    Because BYU is the flagship program of the conference.

    Why did so few other conference members create a fuss about Utah leaving?

    Because, despite Utah's recent BCS success, nobody really cared that much about playing and beating the Utes.

    Why did Thompson go nuclear to try to stop BYU from leaving the MWC?

    Because BYU is everybody's biggest rival, because BYU is the winningest program across the board in nearly every MWC sport.

    In the two biggest sports, football and men's basketball, there isn't a single team in the MWC, including the Utes, that even comes close to matching what BYU has done in football and basketball combined during the last five years.

  • SilverGeo9
    Aug. 19, 2010 10:17 p.m.

    The truth is this:

    AD Holmoe cleared up all questions when he said "Our goal is exposure". Exposure of what? The LDS church. Football is a tool to bring positive exposure to BYU and the LDS Church.

    BYU is and always will be a Mormon-church sponsored school. The Church would shut down all sports programs in a heart beat if they were viewed as negatively impacting their missionary message. Getting more TV exposure in a deal with ESPN is about getting more missionary value out of the sports programs. The 'mtn' network deal stymied that desire.

    BYU sports are viewed around the world on the church's network. They are used as a tool to recruit young men and women into the church, have them come to BYU for religious and vocational training, and then return to their native countries to become local religious leaders. Being unable to re-broadcast their own games severely handicaps that very valuable missionary tool.

    This is not about football and not about money. It is about spreading the message of BYU and the LDS church. That is how the decision will play out.

  • redandwhite
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:40 p.m.

    Ok how about this. Take the best teams from the WAC,the MWC and Conferance USA and make a whole new league new name and all. Start from scratch on TV deals and everything. How could this not be an AQ conf. If everyone just left the MTN network, no more crappy TV deal right? SO BYU,TCU,BSU,AF,HOUSTON,FRESNO,NEVADA,UTEP,SDSU and SMU plus two more.

  • MOUte
    Aug. 19, 2010 9:20 p.m.

    So, Utah moves to a new conference but manages to leave a strong foundation in place for the MWC. BYU attempts the same thing they leave a path of destruction behind them? Why is that??


  • Mickster
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:45 p.m.

    I also agree with earlier posts and would pay a monthly access fee if needed to get all BYU sports. Even with a small $5-10 per month, with 50,000 people to sign up would generate another $250-$500,000 monthly, or $3-6 million more in programming fees, not including broadcast rights and deals with ESPN.

    The best choice of conference affiliation would be with the WCC because of their traditions, nobody is bolting for other conferences, and they have a proven history of success in numerous different sports, both men and women. BYU would also be able to fill their football slate with enough teams across the nation wanting to get on national TV broadcasts, either through ESPN or BYU TV.

  • Boomer
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:37 p.m.

    1984 for Life--

    How right you are, considering it wasn't BYU's BCS appearances that were keeping the Lobos fed. BTW, didn't realize my simple outline for a 12 team league would somehow solicit a slight from you. Why so uptight '84? Relax' BYU will have two more chances to beat the Lobos in hoops this year. Say hello to Molly Ringwold.

  • Kramer
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:21 p.m.

    Wasatch Reb, You can't be serious...Basketball? UNLV hasn't been revelant in any sport in years. College football fuels the Money Train for college sports. Basketball is a distant second, and UNLV basketball is way back in that department.

    BYU football is nationally reconized and the Mountain West should do everything they can do to hold on to them. The Mountain network is nothing without the Cougars and the Utes. If the Cougars leave now the payouts in the next few years will drop like a rock and Comcast will shut down the network.

  • rok
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:19 p.m.

    go independent, keep the other sports in the mwc, not moving them to the WAC

  • Kramer
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:12 p.m.

    What People are forgeting about is BYU's abilities with their TV Network. Not just in the showing of thier own games but in their ability to Partner with some large network (ESPN) to broadcast state of the art digital signals all around the world. Don't be suprised if a partnership deal isn't worked out that will fill the coffers in Cougartown for years to come. I've heard rumors of up to 30 Million per year. Now thats what I call CHA CHING!
    Don't be suprised if a bidding war doesn't arise between ESPN and Fox for the services of the BYU TV network. Of course that's only for programing Mnoday thru Saturday.

  • Jaime Lee Bonberger
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:09 p.m.

    Otis Spurlock: "We are always having to fix little brother's problems."

    And yet, here you are, commenting at least 3 times on an article exclusively about BYU.

    Little brother indeed.

  • Yodaman
    Aug. 19, 2010 8:05 p.m.


    Holmoe did run off like a "chicken with his head cut off." Remember, he was fielding questions, got a phone call, and just walked away. I was thinking the whole time reading this that BYU sounds really unstable right now. Not to say they won't figure it out. I'm sure in a day or two this will be resolved and BYU will be either going independent or stayint put. Who knows.

    Regardless of what BYU does, I'm just glad my Utes are done with this stuff. I'm glad our coach and boys can just focus on the game and not be in this turmoil that the Y is in right now. I'm sure the coaches and the players are trying not to think about this. But a reaction formation is inevitable. Guaranteed it's on their minds, and that affects how well they prepare for the season. Glad the Utes can stay focused.

    In my opinion, this isn't a bad move for BYU, but Holmoe and his crew should have done this a month ago after the Utes' move to the PAC-10, and not waited until camp had started.

  • SoCalUtahFan
    Aug. 19, 2010 7:54 p.m.

    ...Holmoe is the one who is calm cool and collected ...Chris Hill could learn a valuable lesson from him on not running your mouth all over the place months in advance of a deal...

    Hill delivered Pac-12 to Utes (and fans). Hill improved Utes from mid-major to major.
    Holmoe still has not done anything yet. Even with independent status and WCC/WAC, it's still nothing.

    Kewger fans, be honest. Would you rather:
    1) BYU in Pac-12 or Big-12 OR
    2) BYU is independent and WCC/WAC

    Chris Hill is laughing out so loud in the hill now.

  • 1984 for life
    Aug. 19, 2010 7:52 p.m.

    Hey Boomer- Sorry, but as a New Mexico fan just keep sitting there with your hand out for that good BCS money. Now with Utah gone and BYU going, you better hope that BSU and TCU can keep you fed.

  • SportsFan
    Aug. 19, 2010 7:40 p.m.

    Wishful thinking Otis.

    Utah took the security of making lots of money for being a perennial middle of the PAC team in football and a perennial bottom dweller in every other sports besides women's gymnastics. Utah's "nationally recognized" ski team MIGHT get a 10 second mention on ESPN once a year IF they happen to win the championship, which only happens once in a while.

    BYU is going independent to serve a national and international BYU fan base and give national exposure to every BYU sports team.

    Chris Hill wouldn't have a clue how to pull that off.

  • bigdaddy
    Aug. 19, 2010 7:28 p.m.

    @Otis Spurlock

    yet Holmoe is the one who is calm cool and collected and not running all over the place like a chicken with his head cut off. Chris Hill could learn a valuable lesson from him on not running your mouth all over the place months in advance of a deal.

    BYU is just sitting tight, holding their silence until the right deal comes along.

  • Kameron
    Aug. 19, 2010 7:22 p.m.

    Holmoe should be applying at BYU Idaho. This is no way to run a program. The whole BYU contingency is on the edge of their seats waiting for the big announcement. Independence is not a great option. WAC is not an option. WCC is not an option. Does this help the church get attention. Stay put and be patient. Sheesh!

  • Boomer
    Aug. 19, 2010 7:19 p.m.

    Lobo fan here. I hope that BYU stays put, as I'm sure a lot of BYU's fans of non-football sports also hope. Time to move to a 12 team league with a football championship:

    Boise St.
    Colorado St.
    Air Force

    New Mexico
    UTEP or Houston
    San Diego State
    Fresno St.

    Unfortunately, Craig Thompson was quoted yesterday as saying "We haven't even discussed a 12 team league". Huh?!?! Not even DISCUSSED it?!?! What kind of strategy planning are you undertaking? Did you happen to spin a wheel on Wednesdyay and it just happened to land on the awkward number of 11 teams?? From the comments like that to the TV contract, the MWC is sorely lacking leadership among its commissioner, its presidents, and its ADs.

  • Otis Spurlock
    Aug. 19, 2010 7:14 p.m.

    I'm sure Holmoe has been on the phone non-stop with Chris Hill asking how to get out of this mess.

    We are always having to clean up after and fix little brother's problems.

  • DC
    Aug. 19, 2010 7:04 p.m.

    Holmoe has bungled this from the beginning. There was never a plan - he was just reacting to Utah moving to the Pac 10. Now BYU is stuck in a conference where they gain little to nothing. BYU got played and there is nothing Holmoe can do about it because he is out matched and obviously out gunned. That's what happens when BYU gambles - they're not used to it, so they get caught and lose big.
    The next step to save face - BYU, TCU and Boise State break away from the MWC and start their own conference - Rocky Mountain Conference and invite Fresno State, Nevada, Air Force, and a few more teams. Get rid of the runts in the MWC.

  • 1984 for life
    Aug. 19, 2010 6:49 p.m.

    Aggies aren't stupid and neither is BYU. BYU to old WAC was plan A. USU and BYU are in this together and plan B will be new WAC. With help from ESPN (who has a contract with the WAC) BYU convinces SDSU, UNLV, BSU, TCU, Hawaii, Air Force and one other to go to the new WAC. With USU, new WAC now has 8 football schools and BYU as an independant in football and a WAC member for everything else. The "new" WAC's tv revenue with ESPN would increase with the addition of a So. Cal market, the Vegas market and a Texas market and the WAC will easily be able to pay these teams more $ than the MWC does ($1.2M each). BYU operates as a football independant and keeps its ESPN and BYUTV revenue and schedules 4-6 WAC teams every year including USU, BSU, TCU, UNLV or SDSU. and Hawaii (to pick up the extra cash for a 13th game). Everyone is happy because every one of these schools gets more $ and Thompson and the MWC lose.

  • The Deuce
    Aug. 19, 2010 6:48 p.m.

    Hera again most are missing the picture. Show me that BYU can beat TCU and Boise State and I will believe. Last two games I saw of BYU vs Boise State it did not look to me like BYU was ready to go independent. Don't throw the other sports team under the bus without due consideration of what the impact will be. BYU has nationally ranked programs in other sports. Where do these teams go as an indepedent? If you think this "independent" thing is a missionary effort try again. This will do nothing for this.

  • GoUtah
    Aug. 19, 2010 6:48 p.m.

    I have to admit, as a University of Utah alum and fan, it sure is a lot of fun to sit back and watch the tds scramble. . .

    There's no question that Utah's departure from the "mid-majors" has left the MWC a "house of cards."

  • NewMexicoUte
    Aug. 19, 2010 6:45 p.m.

    Since this is on the main DN page, I figured I would comment. If BYU demands respect, do it on the field first not with its 1980s championship. It should tell you how many college football fans actually remember that or even care, only BYU fans.

    Instead of creating all this unnecessary talk about its football program and getting the respect they feel they deserve. They must do three things first before they get any respect (and not just ride of the coattail of your name)? Go UNDEFEATED, get a BCS berth, WIN a BCS game, then they will the respect they deserve.

    Why do you think Utah and Boise St are respected (and they don't have a lot of Mormon fans to help their national following)??? Because they've both been to the BCS and won twice. That is the difference.

  • Cougar Blue
    Aug. 19, 2010 6:35 p.m.

    I'm amazed that so many who post here do not realize that if football goes independent, that automatically rules out minor sports for the team who left---it's in MWC rules. So stuff that quandry. Secondly, the Mtn. TV contract does not expire until either 2014 or 2016. So, waiting that out will be tough. My little brain says stay in the MWC and help make it better, but Holmoe and others have far more info that I do. Good luck.

  • Bugoff
    Aug. 19, 2010 6:09 p.m.

    The MTN TV contract has little or no value. That is a prime reason the MTN will never qualify as BCS.

    If it could be dropped and replaced with an ESPN contract BYU, BSU, TCU and AF would carry the conference. However, how much is that worth? Would BYU's share be more than BYU would get as an independent?

    The real issue is not the money. It is being able to play all over the country and get every game televised.

  • SportsFan
    Aug. 19, 2010 6:03 p.m.


    "This is very obviously a jealous knee-jerk reaction to do something, anything, to try and one up Utah."

    Comments like your just prove how clueless most Utah fans who blog here really are.

    BYU has been studying the possibility of going independent for years. They're on the verge of completing a state-of-the-art HD broadcast facility that can broadcast BYU sporting events via BYU-TV into 50 million homes. BYU has a $25 million HD broadcast truck that is the envy of even the "leader in sports television".

    BYU's partnership with Utah in helping to create the WAC 50 years ago and the MWC over 10 years may have kept BYU from pursuing plans for independence.

    Utah leaving for the PAC 10 may have provided the impetus for BYU finally making the move the independence, but it's hardly a knee-jerk reaction. Going independent has been in the planning stages for years.

  • MiP
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:54 p.m.

    I think the MWC and BYU will be just fine. If the MWC can get either Tulsa or Houston (less so SMU, though they are on a rebound), then you'd have 12 teams in a conference like this:

    Boise State

    Houston (or Tulsa)
    New Mexico
    Air Force

    No, it wouldn't be the old 16-team WAC (minus SMU, Rice, Hawaii and UTEP)---but that idea wasn't bad anyway. It was simply ahead of its time.

    With 12 teams you could also have a championship game.

    It's very concievable that the MWC gets an AQ bid when the BCS renews in a few years. BYU's chances of winning the conference and going to a BCS would be pretty darn good with the talent they are bringing in.

    Going independent, IMHO, would lead the Y to a death bed for sports.

    By-the-way, I enjoyed his comments regarding the rivalry with Utah.

  • Bugoff
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:43 p.m.

    Austin has announced 3 BYU games with Texas over future years.

    BYU is going to have trouble scheduling BCS opponents? It does not sound like it.

  • Steven S Jarvis
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:34 p.m.

    After years of talk of independence (this was going on in the 90's when I was at school there) will it finally happen? I certainly hope so.

    If BYU does go independent they could net one or two more home games a year. They will be on TV more. They can CHOOSE who they schedule with much more freely getting games all over the US while increasing church exposure. This sure beats getting stuck in a conference.

  • Jimmything
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:31 p.m.

    I can't believe the comments from cougar fans saying Holmoe and BYU are doing such a great job. This is very obviously a jealous knee-jerk reaction to do something, anything, to try and one up Utah. So far it has backfired. If going independant was such a good idea, why wait until now to do it? BYU is a far, far, far cry from Notre Dame and even they struggle to be an independant. Truthfully, I'm getting sick and tired of this conference run around and am so happy that the Utes are set forever in the Pac-12.

  • FormerBYUfan
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:31 p.m.

    I think that it would be a bad move for BYU to get out of the MWC. I think that the conference needs to get together and dump the mountain contract as soon as they can. Then they need to get an agreement for broadcast rights that every team is in agreement with. I don't think that any team in the conference is happy with the mountain. When does the tv contract expire? In a year or two? If so, I don't think that it will be hard to wait it out.

    Otherwise Holmoe would be telling every other sports team that they aren't as important as Football.

  • duckhouse
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:23 p.m.

    If you read my earlier post. Please join in and comment, we need support for our own TV- to all BYU fans through-out the nation and abroad also. Let's all get in on this and give lots of support.

  • Cougs4Life
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:23 p.m.

    I think that it is pretty insightful to note that Holmoe pointed out that a barrier to getting other programs to play in Provo is that they will be broadcast on the mtn.

    With an ESPN deal in place, I'd think that there are a fare number of middle of the road BCS teams (like Utah?) that might jump at the chance to play in Provo on a nationally televised game on the "recognized leader in sports broadcasting." Especially in exchange for a return trip that would generate an increase in home attendance?

  • GoUtah
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:18 p.m.

    @Tom in CA

    "The BYU Cougars have been lining up their ducks and exploring their options long before the events of this summer."

    Correct! This has been planned for months, now. Independence is their "fall-back" option once the tds' plans to get invited to the PAC 10 failed, and their pleading with the BIG XII to "please let them in" wasn't heard.

    Independence has been the plan all along.

  • patriot
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:14 p.m.

    The WAC is losing teams left and right and is going to be a third rate conference soon if it exists at all. The MWC has lost Utah and now the Y wants out. Without Utah or BYU the MWC will be the old WAC. BYU is in a tough sport for sure. Perhaps the only option would be to go independent in football and then stay in the MWC for all other sports but I doubt the MWC wants a part time member. So what does BYU do? If they just stay in the MWC my guess is the football program will die on the vine within 5 years so just staying put isn't an option but... it may be the only option the Y has for now. Perhaps BYU's days in the NCAA are coming to an end? I think that is the most likely option unfortunately.

  • duckhouse
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:11 p.m.

    I have been a BYU for 65 years plus,,,,,,I have stayed up all nite if necessary to catch BYU Sports, I think that going independent would be the best thing in the world. I would pay $50.00 plus monthly to have BYU sports in my home on TV, EVery one of them, football, basketball, baseball, volleyball, soccer, swimming, woman gym and every women's sports. Hey It would be the columination of a dream come true. I use to listen to KSL radio, when we could get games, back in the 40les and 50ies, I say again I would pay even 100.00 Month to get all BYU sports, so would every BYUfan, there are thousands of us in Idaho. Go for it BYU----sign up your own TV broadcast. We are all behind you. Lots of the Ute fans would sign up also to see local teams play, Utah, Utah State, Southern Utah, Dixie, SL community college. etc.

  • Otis Spurlock
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:04 p.m.

    BYU's new motto:

    Will Work for Food

  • toocoolforcoug
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:04 p.m.

    Sounds like BYU is slowly getting out of athletics all together. This is just the first step.

  • 10CC
    Aug. 19, 2010 5:00 p.m.

    Tom in CA:

    Uhhh... it looks like Fresno St & Nevada have made BYU change their plans. This sounds like BYU is not entirely in charge of their own destiny.

    But maybe Jesus himself is guiding all these events and it is merely a test for those who have less faith than you.

  • NevadaCoug
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:53 p.m.

    BYU, the Mormon school, playing against Gonzaga and St. Mary's in the WCC? And we thought the Utah rivalry got nasty. Those rivalries definitely could become religious-based wars. But it certainly could be fun.

    The key here is money. BYU wants to keep more of its revenue. The departure of Nevada and Fresno St. from the WAC has made it, at the moment, a conference with not enough teams, even if BYU re-joins. So does BYU stay in the MWC? Two more schools means more people taking from the pie; and, in the short run, less money for each school. In the long run it may mean more money for all. But the key word there is "may." Will Nevada bring in above average money? Will Fresno St.?

    Going independent in football will mean BYU gets to keep all of its football revenue at least. But as an independent BYU will not be guaranteed a spot in any bowl games; at least not at first. Later on, they may be able to contract with a bowl.

    So many questions. It's not something that can be jumped into lightly.

  • MenaceToSociety
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:48 p.m.

    By things are playing out, does he mean his destruction of BYU's athletic team by dropping them to the WAC conference or the WCC conference? Yeah, great move. If I were a Cougar fan, I'd be furious.

    Thankfully, I'll be enjoying Pac 12 football a year from now.

  • LivinLarge
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:48 p.m.

    Let's face it - BYU has zero viable options. Both the WAC and MWC are tier 2 or 3 conferences and are at the cellar of competitive sports. The Y needs better athletic leadership at every level to make things happen!

  • Whoa Nellie
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:47 p.m.

    CT98 Perhaps the reason BYU doesn't keep their other sports in the MWC is the TV issue. BYU wants to televise other sports besides football.

  • cougarinboston
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:46 p.m.

    The WCC is MUCH stronger than the MWC or the WAC in a number of the small sports. The WCC is FAR better than the MWC in Baseball, Women's Soccer, Men's and Women's Golf and Men's and Women's Tennis.

    BYU is the MWC's strongest Women's soccer team, having won 6 conference titles in the 10 years of the MWC. The WCC has 3 NATIONAL CHAMPIONS in that span, with Santa Clara winning it all in 2001, and Portland winning 2 titles in 2002 and 2005.

    Pepperdine has recently won national titles in Baseball (1992), Men's Golf (1997), Men's Water Polo (1997), Men's Volleyball (1992 and 2005), and Men's Tennis (2006).

    The fact is, the WCC is overall stronger academically AND athletically than the MWC. It's just that most MWC fans aren't familiar with it because they don't play football. The WCC is the Atlatnic 10 of the West: it's a group of religiously affilated, VERY expensive academic universities that excel at basketball and the small sports. Almost all of these schools have Law schools.

    Aug. 19, 2010 4:43 p.m.

    So how will BYU save face? Fiddler? Calling on you. How will your Cougars save face?

  • Dougedug
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:40 p.m.

    If you want the best laugh of the day, read this
    according to 1100 ESPN in Las Vegas, BYU turned down an invitations to the PAC 10 and BIG 12 earlier when they were approached, because BYU wanted to go independent.

    As well as how BYU was demanding the MWC tourney to be held in Provo.

    Then they said that the MWC was going to form into get this a 20-22 team conference.

    Its a good thing that Utah has 1280 the zone

  • BYU 26 Utah 23
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:35 p.m.

    "Why didn't BYU decide to stay in the MWC and have their Football team go independent? Why switch to the lowly WAC?"

    Because the MWC is too jealous of BYU going independent in football to allow that to happen. Plus, that still wouldn't free up the other BYU sports to be broadcast on BYU-TV.

    Maybe cooler heads will prevail and the MWC will realize what they're losing in all of the other sports.

    BYU may end up having to spread their minor sports among several leagues.

    Men's volleyball, rugby, soccer, and ice hockey are all more or less independent already. Women's gymnastics isn't in a conference.

    There's already a precendent for BYU's minor sports teams to play in different conferences or as independents.

    But the one unifying factor is that ALL of their competitions could be shown on BYU-TV nationally.

  • 93 COUGAR
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:32 p.m.

    In other words...

    Everything is going exactly as planned.

    Stay tuned folks.

    The end result is going to be good.

  • cougarinboston
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:29 p.m.

    In addition to being a strong basketball conference (stronger than the WAC and on par with the MWC with a BYU-less MWC and a WCC WITH BYU), the WCC is great in other sports.

    They are better overall in baseball, and you have Pepperdine which was #1 in the Director Cup standings for schools without football.

    But let's be real here. BYU OWNS the MWC in the small sports, winning more titles than the other 8 schools combined. Even if the WCC were weak (and it's not) it wouldn't matter. We excel in Cross Country despite the fact that the rest of the MWC stinks.

    If any of you are doubting that the WCC is better in basketball, consider this: since the MWC was created in 1999, the WCC is 20-16 in the NCAA tournament, with 4 of their 8 teams winning at least 1 NCAA game. The MWC has just 9 wins out of their 9 member institutions. yes, Gonzaga accounts for most of those, but St. Mary's, Pepperdine, and San Diego have all won games as well. The MWC doesn't have ANY team that currently has the cachet of Gonzaga.

  • Anti Bush-Obama
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:15 p.m.

    Just stay in your place and try to beat BSU and TCU if you can.

    Aug. 19, 2010 4:13 p.m.

    So how will BYU save face? Fiddler? Calling on you. How will your Cougars save face?

  • Snark
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:07 p.m.

    BYU does not measure success in all the ways that other Universities do. Exposure is the way that a university helps its athletes succeed. It is also the way that its program (recruiting) improves. I will not mention other measurements of success at the core of the BYU agenda (it would only bring a load of mockers who don't understand that there are things more important than football).

  • manaen
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:06 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.

  • Independent
    Aug. 19, 2010 4:02 p.m.

    Don't give in to fear, BYU. Go independent. Don't fool yourselves into thinking the MWC is worth staying in. Take the leap of faith.

  • BleedCougarBlue
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:53 p.m.

    Holmoe is handling this perfectly: asking lots of questions to other schools, other conferences, other (non-BYU) television networks, not saying "this is the way it is" when he knows it could change nor getting into merely speculating.

    Is independence in BYU's best interests?

    Don't know.

    But I do know the AD is playing his cards pretty danged smart.

    I think the biggest negative holding us back so far is that Fresno State and Nevada both left the WAC. Those were pretty decent teams and finding comparable teams to play in their place year after year just made scheduling that much harder.

    Co Cougs!

  • CRM
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:51 p.m.

    It's like this game of Super Chess with one side being BYU and the other side being an amalgamation of interests from shools and conferences to TV networks. It's not unfair nor is it conspriatorial, its just business. Going to be an interesting ride over the next few days I expect. Just as what Utah did was best for them, BYU will do what is in their best interests. As a BYU faithful this whole process has, in an interesting sort of way, given me a lot of respect for U of U as an institution and what they have recently accomplished! Congrats UofU and go BYU!!

  • WasatchReb
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:50 p.m.

    BTW....I'm really curious WWJD if he were running BYU's department. Would he really be that selfish and greedy. Would he really appreciate the athletic department that is run by his school doing this? This is something BYU really needs to remember when they make these kind of decisions. This isn't just a "business" decision represent the church of "Jesus Christ" and I feel its appropriate to ask the question. This is not what our church should be doing.......and no, you can't separate the athletics of the school from church. You should all know this.

    Coveting what Utah has is ludicrous as happy for them. Regardless of what they could make a year in the PAC 10, they won't be BYU and BYU should just be happy for them and move on. In the end, if a deal like that comes along for BYU (Big 12?) that would be a whole other story....however, being greedy and selfish, and going independent is both those things, should be somethin you try and avoid, and that should be obvious. Its mindboggling that it's not.

  • Gorilla
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:49 p.m.

    BYU needs a reality check. Do they really think they are relevant enough to fill a full home schedule of quality BCS teams year after year as an independent when they won't do a 2 for 1.

    And good luck getting quality BCS opponents in late October and November to travel to Prove for a non-conference game. Late fall is a time of year when most team are jockeying to get in to a BCS bowl game and would not risk that on an exhibition game in Provo.

  • oldone
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:48 p.m.

    I still think BYU has a solid offer to be somewhere in 2012 and they are trying to do something with 2011 other than suffer through another year in the MWC - especially without Utah.

    There is no advantage with low exposure and TV revenue. This will give them 2011 to use their media equipment to it's fullest, expand it's relationship with ESPN and other non MWC "friends."

    That's why this is not as much of a gamble as people think. It really is only for one year or maybe two and we can stumble through those years and still probably be better off than if we stay in the MWC.

    The BCS is not going to give us AQ status even if we meet their requirements. hopefully the good news for 2012 is the Big 12 or some other option like that.

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

    I know how you feel, Fiddler. When the Utes got the PAC-12 invite, I was so happy to be done with mtn channel and Hair Thompson - who has done so little with so much.

  • Cougars --Best Little Brothers
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:47 p.m.

    Q: Why do you think BYU should go to either WCC or WAC(ky) conf?

    A: Well, I think that is the level that we should play ball at.

    Q: Do you realize that "Does what Fresno State does affect us" does not sound like proper English?

    A: huh?

  • RepresentBlue
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:40 p.m.

    Take BYU to the WCC! Its about as close to a perfect fit for the non-football sports as you will find for BYU. That league has a great basketball tradition, an existing TV deal on ESPN, and Gonzaga is a nationally recognized program that would make a great rival for BYU. Yes, they are small schools, and play in small arenas, but BYU can still bring big names to the Marriott, and having a path to the NCAA tourney is the most important thing. The WCC placed two teams in the tourney last year (Gonzaga and St. Marys). Is the WCC perfect? No. But it is a lot more attractive and stable than the WAC, and BYU doesn't even have to withhold their football from them because they don't play that sport. Plus they are all private, religious institutions like BYU, and in this fan's mind, those are the kinds of institutions that BYU should be seeking to affiliate itself with in the future.

  • WasatchReb
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:39 p.m.

    The one thing that really iritates me when I read these articles about BYU's leaving because of a lack of exposure and their current tv deal, is that BYU WAS RESPONSIBLE for this current deal. Just like BYU is doing RIGHT NOW, they lead an unorganized, emotional-filled coup to begin a start-up TV network that benefited BYU (directly and indirectly). The former Cougarblue Network/Sportswest merged into the MTN and provided/provides continued services for the channel. Dave Checketts came in and pushed the network to the market, left us in the hands of CSTV and later Comcast and even later CBS.

    Now, we have a horrible TV deal with little exposure....but not only that, my alma mater (UNLV) HAD A LUCRATIVE deal with ESPN for the sport we care about, basketball, and we had to get rid of it because of, well...largely, BYU's doing. My school has lost millions because of this, but its a sacrifice you make to be in a we did it. Now, BYU wants to just take their ball and go home? Not gonna share with your neighbors anymore? Karl Benson called Nevada and Fresno Selfish?!!?!?!

  • Levin
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:38 p.m.

    And "without saying anything," Tom Holmoe told us that the benefit of independence is indeed to be able to play teams from a lot of different places. A greater "reach." Makes sense.

    Thank you, Education Week.

  • Tom in CA
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:37 p.m.

    The BYU Cougars have been lining up their ducks and exploring their options long before the events of this summer. Their decision making is not a knee-jerk reaction to the choices made by any other school. BYU will control their own destiny and come out smelling like a rose.

  • Otis Spurlock
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:37 p.m.

    Just looking at the photo, you can almost smell the desperation oozing from Holmoe's pores.

  • Bluto
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:37 p.m.

    Sounds like Holmoe is getting wobbly....

    Seriously, is BYU going to let podunk Nevada, or Fresno dictate their future?

    This is exactly why BYU is stuck where they are, they don't have the guts to venture and pull the trigger.

    Can you imagine BYU going back to the abusive MWC?

    ESPN drives all of this.

    Get ESPN involved to up the dollars to UNLV, San Diego St. and New Mexico, in order for them to join the WAC then hold Nevada and Fresno to the 5 million dollar penalty they agreed to.

    And you have a great basketball league, and a league where San Diego and UNLV can finally grow in football.

    Benson needs to be aggressive.

    No more soicalistic revenue sharing with the bottomfeeders.

  • Flaming Liberal
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:35 p.m.

    Wow. I can't imagine the desperation BYU must have felt to embark on this knee-jerk reaction to Utah's Pac 12 move. The problem is, decisions made in haste, with greed as the motivation, usually turn out bad. Good luck BYU- you'll definitely need it.

  • Skippy
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:31 p.m.

    I really hope things work out for BYU, otherwise they come out of this looking like they are selling themselves. Isn't that what all the BYU fans thought Utah did? I know all fans will justify this in some way, but it is what it is.

  • CT98
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:30 p.m.

    Why didn't BYU decide to stay in the MWC and have their Football team go independent? Why switch to the lowly WAC?

    It is amazing to consider the dominoe effect that was set off by one man, Larry Scott deciding to expand the Pac 10. Texas refused his offer so Utah was taken which led to Boise joining the MWC which led to BYU leaving, which led to Fresno and Nevada jumping ship.....and I'm sure we haven't seen the end of it. Larry Scott single handedly changed the face of college football in the West.

  • Observation-ist
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:27 p.m.

    I don't envy Tom. He has to be working frantically to figure everything out. Best of Luck Tom. Go Cougs!

    To any haters who will inevitably chime in here ... If you're so (arrogantly) wise as to criticize Tom and his staff, do the rest of us the courtesy of sharing your wisdom on what should be done ... don't just stand on the sidelines and spew negative comments. Your weened-on-a-pickle attitude really stinks up the place.

    BTW, I feel for Coach Rose. He must be in a tizzy.

    As for me, I prefer Football independence and the WCC for Basketball. Doesn't Notre Dame split it's other sports between more than one conference? Perhaps that's an option. Good Luck Tom. You know more about the situation than any blogger here, including myself.

  • mkSdd3
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:26 p.m.

    If Holmoe is stating it correctly and it is all about exposure and TV rights, then the only answer is to let the football team go independent, and have the of BYU sports join the best conference that will accept them.

  • Andrew
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:25 p.m.

    Go Cougars!!!

  • Kyle loves BYU/Jazz
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:24 p.m.

    Nevada and Fresno killed the WAC and didn't leave that as a viable option for BYU.

    WCC isn't as good of option for BYU because that means the schedule for football is that much harder to create. Still possible but the deal with the WAC would have made the schedule much easier. How good are the other sports beside besides basketball? I don't like the idea of shafting every student athlete that doesn't play football just so football can be independent.

    Staying in the MWC isn't great because we are still stuck with the MTN and now we have two more teams who don't bring much. I really don't see how Nevada and Fresno help us get an automatic bid and even if we get one something has to be done about the TV deal.

    If we have to stay with the MWC I hope they at least add Houston and make it a 12 team conference. 11 doesn't make much sense to me.

    The MTN more than anything hurts BYU. If somehow the conference would give BYU back their TV rights I'd feel good about staying.

  • B
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:17 p.m.

    Law of unintended consequences?

  • JHP
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:15 p.m.

    Everything is going to work out fine for BYU.

    BYU fans just need to be patient.

  • aljmac
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:11 p.m.

    What do we look at as a standard and say that "exposure" is down. Since the MWC bailed from ESPN, we've gotten lost some exposure, but made up for it in respect. When in the history of the old WAC or MWC have we had 3 teams finish the season ranked. This year we start with one in the top 10 and another in the top 25?

    If the WAC allegedly has better exposure than us because of ESPN, and they have one team in the top 10 and no one else even sniffing the Top 25.

    Utah just put 6 players in the NFL. TCU is preseason Top 10. Didn't we just get four teams into the NCAA tournament last year? Exposure may be down, but is that really the metric for success?

    BYU needs to rethink this whole thing.

  • SportsFan
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:10 p.m.

    As we've seen, BYU is smart to do their business behind closed doors until the deal is signed, sealed and delivered.

    As Holmoe said, anything BYU might say today could change tomorrow.

    BYU appears to have had a firm deal worked out to partner with the WAC in football and become a member of the WAC in all of the other sports.

    A couple of players changed their minds and now it's back to the drawing board to work out a new plan.

    This is just like the Big 12 reshuffling we saw a couple of months ago.

    No deal is a done deal until it's actually signed, and even then, players sometimes change their minds.

    Stay tuned.

    BYU will eventually get the kinks worked out and will go independent in football. It may just take a little while longer because of a couple of players who got cold feet in the home stretch.

  • Striker
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:09 p.m.

    Holmoe is so great. The last thing I want to do is be associated with a weak WAC, but I trust these guys doing all of this. What an exciting time to be a BYU fan!

  • Fiddler
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:08 p.m.

    We'll still go independent. We're in to deep and I am glad. Glad we're done with Thompson and the MWC.

  • BYUBlue65
    Aug. 19, 2010 3:03 p.m.

    It will be great to watch the Utes go 8-5 next year in the PAC 10 and get to go to Vegas, for a change. With our football talent, and some experience, let's say we get a great schedule - run the table - and Utah fans get to watch the TDS play for the national championship.

    A stranger thing could happen. I'll be there in my Utah letter jacket with three stripes, cheering for my cougars (I repented after 1965).

    Write this down and refer to it in the coming two years.