ESPN: Sources Reveal DU's WAC Plan

(above) DU is trying to save the WAC
by Andy Katz

The University of Denver’s plan, according to a source, is to try to convince the remaining WAC members (Idaho, New Mexico State, Boise State and Seattle) that they should stay together to keep the league’s automatic NCAA tournament berth. 

The WAC could then add available Utah Valley and Cal State Bakersfield. 

The problem is that NMSU and Idaho will need a home for football and Boise State now would rather be in the Big West or, if the Big East were to fail, head back to the Mountain West. And, according to a source, if Denver had its choice, the Pioneers would go to the stable and all-private WCC.


Anonymous said...

DU has more than one plan, folks.

Publically, it's all about stabilizing and expanding what is left of the WAC. DU can be the hero here, but only if the remaining schools can stay the course. Frankly, I think Iadho and NMSU are football-focused than save-the -wac focused.

I think DU is also working every backchannel they can to get into the WCC, MWC or MVC, if openings exist. The Summit is always there too, but it's by far the last resort option among existing autobid conferences.

As the musical chairs rotate in conference realignment, there may may some good oppotunities for DU to get out a mess that they had very little choice to endure in the first place.

I think DU will be okay in the long run. But for now, we sweat.

dggoddard said...

Interesting comment and in no way, shape or form is DU to blame for any of this. College conference shuffling has gone crazy and without any centralized leadership from the NCAA its going to continue.

The best way to control all of this would be to allow schools to switch conferences if they pay a $10 million fee to the NCAA. That way schools would only do these moves if they were sure it was in the long term interests of the institution. Of course $10 million is tip money to the big schools.

EarthX said...

You want the NCAA to tell teams which conference to be in? Wow.

Most people think the NCAA has too much power, now you want them to take more control than they have ever had in their history?

I don't see how that's good idea.

The schools associate with whoever they wish. That is their right and should remain as such.

dggoddard said...

One school switches conferences and before you know it 15 other schools get moved or bumped around.

I'm guessing the AD's & Presidents will have to do something.

Anonymous said...

The big issue is that so few (comparatively speaking) member schools wield such unbelievably disproportionate power over what happens in the college sports landscape. These powerful few (which, it must be said, are acting COMPLETELY in their own rational self-interest without any real malice towards other schools) are able to just run roughshod over the entire rest of the NCAA.

That leaves so many schools right where DU is: In the unenviable position of simply twisting in the wind, fully at the mercy of what happens in AD and Chancellor offices (and broadcast network boardrooms) in places OTHER than on their own campuses.

Yes, schools should be allowed to associate with whomever they wish (I seem to remember reading something about that in the Constitution...); but DG has given voice to a legitimate gripe, here - the NCAA is supposed to be about supporting ALL of its member institutions. In fact, the NCAA lists as part of its "core values" that it has a commitment to "enhancing the sense of community and strengthening the identity of member institutions."

Note that it doesn't say "SOME member institutions"...or "just member institutions that play football in BCS-automatic-qualifier conferences (plus Notre Dame)...or "just member institutions that have the following necessary to command their own television network". The NCAA is supposed to serve ALL of its member institutions. And a compelling argument can be made that it has severely shirked its responsibility to its membership during the conference realignment fiasco of the the last couple of years.

Unfortunately, there is no easy fix here. But, the NCAA's strategy of simply standing by and watching it all unfold with nary a peep of criticism or demonstration of leadership only serves to give further credence to the strengthening voices out there that are questioning the need for the NCAA at all.

In the end, yes. DU will probably be okay in the long run. It just sucks to be one of those schools whose athletic programs' fate rests almost purely in the hands of others....