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DI Conference Hunt

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  • DI Conference Hunt

    It looks like there's some talk that the U. of New Orleans, Southern Alabama, and Arkansas-Little Rock may be interested in the Mid-Continent Conference. Check out the discussion on (UNO's board).

    Wonder what that does to SDSU, NDSU, and UNC's chances of getting into the Mid-Con?
    "I think we'll be OK"

  • #2
    Re: DI Conference Hunt

    It probably wont help our chances. However, I think a lot of these conferences are awaiting the major changes / realignment that is coming with schools changing affiliation. There is so much moving beginning. On Sunday I read that Rice, Tulsa, and SMU will join C-USA, which is expanding because the Big East is going to snag 3-4 teams from them. The bottom line is in 2-3 years many D1 conferences will look very diffrent than they do today. I have nothing to back this up but I think the Big Sky is still very much in play for both SDSU and NDSU. We may have to wait a couple of years, but it sounds like were not having a lot of trouble getting games scheduled as an independant, and there is always that pool of "Great Western" schools that we can schedule for football. I think the same holds true for basketball we can put together a pretty attractive schedule as an independant for 2-3 years until all of the changes shake out. Both State universitys are too quality of schools not to find a home.


    • #3
      Re: DI Conference Hunt

      I have not been that enthused about the Mid-Cont from the get-go. I agree that conference membership has to be a priority, but in the interim I also think we can put together a pretty attractive schedule. I think there will be some surprisingly good conference options for both state schools in the not so distant future. On the football side Regional D1AA schools seem to be actively looking for games.


      • #4
        Re: DI Conference Hunt

        I did some quick research about the three Sun Belt schools basketball programs-I realize that they may be attractive to the Mid-Con due to geographic reasons,but if its for attendence they should still be looking to the Dakotas.  These  are the basketball attendence figures for the 3 schools in question.
        U New Orleans     01/02        Home Avg    1556
        U Arkansas LR       02/03        Home Avg.    3854
        S. Alabama            01/02        Home Avg.     1910

        I guess that if they are interested in expanding to large metro areas for advertising and exposure thats one thing, but if nobody is going to the games what good does it do????


        • #5
          Re: DI Conference Hunt

          It's just pathetic when you look at the apathy for athletics at some of these schools. SDSU and NDSU are head and shoulders above most of these schools that these conferences are considering. I envision that SDSU will one day sell out every basketball game.


          • #6
            Re: DI Conference Hunt

            Me too.... sooner than later..... Once we can schedule good D1 caliber basketball teams. It's going to get hard to get tickets. I'm buying season tickets to get priority seating for the future and I live in TEXAS ! The new individual "blue" seats should be in place for next season. The only bleacher seating will be on the ends. this will decrease capacity to around 8,000, but should significatly help with group and season ticket purchases. The nay sayers will disagree but we will see routine sell outs at Frost in the next few years !!

            GO STATE


            • #7
              Re: DI Conference Hunt

              Here is a quick story from the Argus dealing with this topic:


              Big East shake-up affects SDSU

              Chris Solari
              Argus Leader

              published: 11/23/2003

              As does the cascade of conference raids taking place across the nation

              Forget the usual suspects for a second. Some of the key players in South Dakota State University's search for a Division I conference have been Virginia Tech, Miami and Boston College.

              Don't roll your eyes yet.

              Truth is, when those three schools agreed earlier this year to leave the Big East for the Atlantic Coast Conference, they set in motion a domino effect that is causing major reverberations among even the smallest Division I conferences.

              And that includes the leagues which have been mentioned as possible homes for the SDSU Jackrabbits - the Mid-Continent Conference, the Horizon League and the Big Sky - as they move their athletic programs to Division I.

              "The conferences we've been talking to obviously are in a little bit of a wait-and-see mode," SDSU Athletic Director Fred Oien said. "It's simply to see what happens to their own membership, but also what might be left and how that might all be organized."

              Consider the chain of events: After Virginia Tech, Miami and Boston College bolted from the Big East, that conference moved quickly to find replacements, plundering Conference USA for Cincinnati, Louisville, Marquette and DePaul.

              "Conference USA saw this as an opportunity to reconfigure itself as a pure (Division) I-A southern-based football-playing conference, and they were able to do that," Big East Commissioner Michael Tranghese said at a press conference. "So when we saw that we might be able to fill our needs, and they, at the same time, would do the same thing - we would not have to reach out to other conferences and be disruptive. To me, it was the best choice that we could possibly make."

              Of course, it also was disruptive. Conference USA acted by swiping Rice, Southern Methodist and Tulsa from the Western Athletic Conference. The WAC is now looking at a few Sun Belt Conference schools. And so on, and so on ....

              "This conference realignment thing continues to seem to bounce around," St. Louis University Athletic Director Doug Woolard told The Associated Press after moving his basketball-playing school from Conference USA to the Atlantic 10 earlier this week.

              Many of those schools play Division I-A football, while SDSU will move into the second-highest classification of I-AA.

              Attendance requirements at the I-A level also will affect some conferences after next football season.

              Those regulations require football teams in that division to play five home games against other I-A opponents, and mandates that attendance at those games top 15,000 people. Previous rules were based on ticket sales. The attendance requirement could propel a bevy of teams entering I-AA to form new leagues or make other conferences decide to reorganize.

              One conference which could be drastically affected is the Mid-American Conference, considered one of the best mid-major football leagues in I-A.

              According to NCAA figures from this season, 10 schools nationwide have average attendance totals below 15,000. Half of those universities are in the MAC, which is also a prime target for a raid because of its basketball prowess. That could cause a major split in the 14-team conference, which will already lose Marshall and Central Florida to Conference USA.

              SDSU has also discussed forming a I-AA football league with six other schools. A formal meeting to discuss that league is set for Dec. 8-9 in Las Vegas.

              "It is an exciting time in intercollegiate athletics," Oien said. "Some people don't like it. But on the other hand, this realignment creates all kinds of new opportunities for everybody."

              Go SDSU!


              • #8
                Re: DI Conference Hunt

                Here is a connection to a very interesting article about Sac State. This may have an effect on our Big Sky hopes.


                Go State!


                • #9
                  Re: DI Conference Hunt

                  A very interesting article. What happens at Sac State may open the door to SDSU/NDSU admittance to the Big Sky Conference. If Sac drops football, they will be forced out of the Big Sky, I would tend to believe. Not sure if that will happen, but as Gene Taylor said in either the Fargo Forum or the SF Argus article, that joining the Big Sky for all sports except football was not option. I tend to believe if current members of Big Sky fail to field a team for any sport they are out of the conference. If Sac State is gone, could Portland State be close behind?

                  SDSU/NDSU would do wonders for basketball attendence which is the money sport. SDSU needs to get their act together on Coughlin and the Sac State issue just might be what breaks the ice jam at SDSU on doing things.


                  • #10
                    Re: DI Conference Hunt

                    Looks like the scheduleing thing is going better then expected. This is super news for our move to D-I.



                    • #11
                      Re: DI Conference Hunt

                      KingCal, who is the admin. over at had an interesting take on our Conf. hunt. Someone else from that board (I think it is also KingCal) had this post on

                      Yes, they very much are. Ideally, NDSU, SDSU and N. Colorado are hoping to gain full admission into the Mid-Con. Since Southern Utah is currently a member, the hope is that the Mid-Con will run the league. UCD, Cal-Poly, and St. Mary's would join as football-only members. Mid-Con football would greatly increase the chances of the NDSU, SDSU and N. Colorado gaining full membership. And once some semblence of profit is made by sponsoring football, the 4 football schools would be able to get some more leverage regarding future Mid-Con dealings.
                      It's by no means a is actually a preference right now. We won't know for a couple of weeks if the Mid-Con will have any interest. They'll probably need to see some fiscal projections, but form all records thus far, the football members seem willing to pay the Mid-Continent to manage the league.


                      My take is that it makes a lot of sense, and could be the direction that we are headed towards. Something to think about.

                      Go State! ;D


                      • #12
                        Re: DI Conference Hunt

                        here is a thread that you bunnies may be interested in (it is on bisonville too)



                        • #13
                          Re: DI Conference Hunt

                          Here is an article from the Grand Forks:


                          NDSU searches for games
                          Bison keep working on their move to Division I
                          By Dave Nilles
                          Special to the Herald

                          FARGO - It's been 16 months since North Dakota State announced it plans to move up to NCAA Division I.

                          With less than a year left until the move officially begins, NDSU athletic director Gene Taylor is comfortable with where the school is at in the transition process.

                          The Bison still don't have a conference. But Taylor knew that wouldn't be easy. However, groundwork is under way to form a football-only conference.

                          Earlier this month, Taylor met with officials from five transitional Division I-AA schools in Las Vegas to plan the initial stages of a football-only conference involving NDSU, South Dakota State, Northern Colorado, St. Mary's (Calif.), Southern Utah, California Davis and California Poly- San Luis Obispo.

                          Taylor hasn't ruled out the Big Sky or Gateway conferences as possibilities for other sports.

                          "The major conferences are realizing that eight teams isn't where you want to be anymore," Taylor said. "If you are an automatic qualifier and lose a team you get nervous. The eight-member conference is becoming a dinosaur."

                          A conference must maintain seven members to be eligible to receive NCAA money from the Division I basketball tournament. The Big Sky and Gateway have eight each. Another conference possibility for the Bison, the Mid-Continent, has nine.

                          Recent conference shuffling in Division I may open doors for NDSU. . . .

                          Another NDSU obstacle may be overcome this spring when the NCAA decides whether to shorten the waiting period for sports to become eligible for postseason competition. Men's basketball may be shortened from 13 to five years.

                          "I'm confident it will go through," Taylor said.

                          Another piece of legislation may remove the waiting period entirely for individual sports, such as wrestling.

                          Taylor hopes the Bison have a conference by next fall or early winter.

                          Go SDSU!
                          Go NDSU!


                          • #14
                            Re: DI Conference Hunt

                            Here's some bald, unadulterated speculation.

                            Let's say that the Great West Football conference gets off the ground, and is run by the Mid-Continent conference similar to what the Missouri Valley does for the Gateway. This looks like it's going to happen.

                            Let's say that the tradition-laden GWC members make the appropriate positive impression on the Mid-Con league office, such that UNC, SDSU, and NDSU earn invites into the Mid-Con.

                            Somewhere along the line, the Mid-Con decides that Denver is a better fit for the conference than Centenary.

                            So what we'll have is a 12-team Mid-Continent Conference that looks like:
                            Chicago State
                            Oral Roberts
                            Western Illinois
                            North Dakota State
                            Northern Colorado
                            South Dakota State
                            Southern Utah

                            I really like the look of this possible Mid-Con West . . . I remember a really fun Div. II playoff game with Denver in Frost Arena in 1992, and I think a UNC-Denver basketball rivalry would be just the thing for both Colorado schools' basketball programs. And what self-respecting, wise-cracking SportsCenter host could resist a twice-yearly Jackrabbit-Kangaroo matchup?
                            "I think we'll be OK"


                            • #15
                              Re: DI Conference Hunt

                              I too like the look of that Western Division. I think down the road the mid-cont could be a decent conference!