BYU Football in Conference or Not

BYU Cougars Football. Still Open, now Independent.

Conference or Not?

1. BYU should stay independent in football
2. BYU should go back to MWC
3. BYU should join the American Athletic Conference
Total votes: 38

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BYU Football in Conference or Not

Postby EM_Puma » Thu Dec 08, 2016 10:50 am

In light of our inability currently to join a P5 conference, you are appointed BYU AD for the day with full power. In this mythical world, what you want, of only these 3 choices, would happen. Which option would you select and why?

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Re: BYU Football in Conference or Not

Postby ABYUFAN » Thu Dec 08, 2016 10:57 am

We have been treated better in basketball in the NCAAs as a member of the WCC than any time in our MWC days. We have more TV time as an independent than almost any two other AAC or MWC teams. AND we have never lost out on a Bowl that we should have been included in. I say independence is far far far better than being in any conference.

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Re: BYU Football in Conference or Not

Postby EM_Puma » Thu Dec 08, 2016 10:57 am

I would move our whole sports program into the AAC. While the MWC teams are closer and, as a conference, would feel better, I don't see how it would not be a step back. In the AAC, I like the more varied access to east coast teams.

My real pick would be to once again create a conference of the best of the rest so there was some regionality, because I don't have any problem being in a conference with Boise, SDSU and CSU. I just don't think that will happen again, so I didn't include it.

I love the ability we had this season to schedule the teams we did, which we wouldn't have in a conference, but it just feels to me like being in a conference is really one of the real components of football enjoyment. I keep feeling every independent season like I'm missing something as a fan. I'm just too proud to ever want to go back to the MWC. I'd rather stay independent.

I'm just curious where the rest of you are these days.

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Re: BYU Football in Conference or Not

Postby YNot » Thu Dec 08, 2016 11:15 am

ND-deal with the *expanded* AAC.

AAC adds Boise St., SDSU, Air Force, and one other - probably CSU - for all sports.

BYU, Gonzaga, and Wichita St. join for Olympic sports.

BYU gets 5 games against the AAC, including an annual game over Thanksgiving weekend with Boise St. 2 games against WEST division (sans Boise) and 2 games against EAST division. BYU keeps its national schedule, but also gets help with November.

And, BYU would still have 7 games to schedule Utah, Utah St. and 4-5 other P5 opponents.

BSU, SDSU, AFA, and CSU would join the AAC WEST and Memphis and Tulane move to the AAC East.

WEST: BSU, SDSU, AFA, CSU, Navy, Houston, SMU, Tulsa
EAST: UConn, Temple, Cincinnati, ECU, UCF, USF, Memphis, Tulane

As a football affiliate, BYU would be ineligible for the AAC Championship, but eligible for all other AAC bowl games. AAC adds Las Vegas and Foster Farms versus PAC opponents and Poinsettia and Hawaii bowls against MWC/CUSA opponents.

AAC+ Bowl Lineup:
- Military (v. ACC)
- Birmingham (v. SEC)
- Foster Farms (v. PAC)
- Armed Forces (v. B12/B1G)
- Las Vegas (v. PAC)
- Miami Beach (v. MAC/CUSA)
- Poinsettia (v. MWC/CUSA)
- Hawaii (v. MWC)
- Boca Raton (v. CUSA/MAC)
- New Orleans (v. CUSA/Sun Belt)
- Cure (v. Sun Belt)

The AAC wouldn't be "power" conference for football, but it would look a lot more like the P5 than the G5. It's champion would likely earn the G5's access bid to the NY6 at least 70% of the time.


The AAC divides Olympic sports into three 6-team regional divisions.

WEST: BYU, Gonzaga, Boise St., SDSU, Air Force, CSU
CENTRAL: Houston, SMU, Tulsa, Memphis, Tulane, Wichita St.
EAST: UConn, Temple, Cincinnati, ECU, UCF, USF

The 18-game basketball schedule includes 10 games against your division (home-away) and 4 games against each of the other 2 divisions. Only two 2-game out-of-division roadtrips.

BYU keeps the Gonzaga rivalry and adds back the SDSU rivalry. Also, occasional basketball games against the likes of UConn, Memphis, Temple, Cincinnati, SMU, Tulsa, Houston, Wichita St., but reasonably limited cross-country travel for Olympic sports.

The AAC would be a multi-bid "power" conference in basketball. Probably 4-6 NCAA tourney bids per year.
Last edited by YNot on Thu Dec 08, 2016 11:29 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: BYU Football in Conference or Not

Postby Fido » Thu Dec 08, 2016 11:25 am

I listened to Jason Buck on the radio this week intending to give his take on things a fair shake--and I would say in general I agree with him. It would be better to have a conference with in-conference rivals you play all the time and be playing for a conference championship. It would be better to be in a conference where you could have access to one of the big bowls should they play well enough to get there. It would be nice to expand the stadium some more and pack the place every week.

But it was interesting that when it came down to WHICH conference would give BYU what they needed, Buck backed off and basically said that is Holmoe's job to identify and work for. And in his conversation with DJ and PK, he admitted that there were valid reasons that Holmoe elected to leave the MWC and that he could give a pass on that. But he feels long term BYU needs a conference and waiting another 7 years for the P5 conferences to potentially expand again.

Of course he did end up going with the "we have to play UMass and Southern Utah" complaints and statements like "we could to to a G5 conference and play in the big bowl game (as the highest ranked conference champ) 3 times every 10 years and FORCE the P5 teams to take BYU or at least not be able to ignore BYU.

I think he does spend a little too much time remembering how great things were when he played as that was the peak of BYU years. And talked a bit too much about going undefeated (something that has very, very rarely happened in BYU history) acting like that is a reasonable expectation every couple years.

I think the 2018-19 timeframe is the next chance to have something change as TV deals start to expire and maybe conferences like the Big 12 start to second guess their "we are fine" stance if they keep missing out on the playoffs. But agree that today there isn't an option available to BYU that is better than independence. But joining a conference in the future would be a great move--if it is the right conference.

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Re: BYU Football in Conference or Not

Postby hawkwing » Thu Dec 08, 2016 12:33 pm

I have yet to see a solid argument for going to any non-P5 conference, including a "best of the non-p5" conference.

If you are undefeated or have 1 loss you have a chance to go to a NY6 game.
Play for a conference championship.
Easy scheduling.

No chance with undefeated season to get into playoffs.
Less TV exposure.
Less $$.
Rigid schedules (limited to 2-3 P5 opponents a year; play the same 8 teams every year)
Recruiting suffers

What am I missing here? I think an undefeated BYU as an independent has a pretty good chance of making a NY6 bowl, if not the playoffs if it means BYU has beaten 5-8 P5 teams, certainly that's a better resume than beating MWC or AAC teams. I also don't care about being G5 conference champs, it really just means nothing to me.

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Re: BYU Football in Conference or Not

Postby byufan4ever » Thu Dec 08, 2016 12:49 pm

I really would love to be in "a" conference and to have conference championships to play for. But all of the TV games are great. Lots of football on ESPN and lots of basketball on BYUtv. That's great TV access that most P5 schools don't have for virtually every game of the two major sports. And the WCC has treated us quite well and I do like being part of a private Christian schools conference, lol.

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Re: BYU Football in Conference or Not

Postby Cougarfan87 » Thu Dec 08, 2016 1:15 pm

I wouldn't mind a very small conference or scheduling alliance just to fill in the November games...say Boise State, Air Force, Navy, and Houston. That would leave eight games to schedule up for a nationally respected schedule. Each team negotiates its own TV deal. Of course, the problem with that is that there would be nothing in it for the other schools. So, I played by the rules and voted independent. I like the national exposure we get. The best we can do as an independent is agree to long scheduling agreements with other schools and over time improve the November schedules. As an independent, I would also be in favor of not signing any bowl deals, because there are better paying bowl games that do not get filled by conferences that lack enough qualifying teams. It leads to more intrigue, not knowing which bowl may invite you before bowl season...the way things used to be.

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Re: BYU Football in Conference or Not

Postby 1967cougar » Thu Dec 08, 2016 1:36 pm

I'm getting used to independence. I think Holmoe has done a good job in scheduling. I kinda like the idea of a "scheduling alliance" with some of the bigger name G5 teams. The negative about being in a G5 conference is that every year we would have to play the bottom feeders. We would have to play them in a P5 conference also but our resume looks better beating a Miss. St. over beating a UTEP. Of course, with independence we get a smattering of both type of bottom feeders. So, meh, it seems it doesn't matter.

I am heartened to see that no one (yet) has voted to go back into the MW. Those of us who lived thru that debacle of being slighted on every hand have no desire to go back to being the picked-on bullies. I fear, however, that there are enough millennials now attending BYU who have no memory of Hair Thompson and his underhanded practices nor of the inability to see games on TV, who might feel joining the MW is a viable option.

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Re: BYU Football in Conference or Not

Postby scott715 » Thu Dec 08, 2016 2:03 pm

It is interesting that the Toledo game turned out to be such a good game and maybe our best win this year. Too bad we didn't have W Michigan on the schedule.

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