The Daily Aggie :: 08/18/10 :: Afternoon BYU Rumor Mill

We had something written about the whole BYU football independence/WAC for everything else but decided hold off on posting it this morning until we got a better indication for if the whole thing was really going to happen or not. This morning has seen the Salt Lake Tribune report that it's a "Done Deal" (of course we all know about how "done" these "done deals" are.), however, they are citing a source in the WAC office in their story. So... we'll stick our necks out a little bit and comment on the potential move.

Before we get that though, one interesting side development in this story is the revelation that there is no penalty for Boise State should they decide that the Mountain West isn't what they thought it was and decide come crawling back to the WAC (that would make for very interesting rivalry games between Idaho and Boise State if that happened given what unfolded during the WAC's football media days). A dream scenario for the WAC would have Boise State come back giving the league it's nine-team format for football and the much desired 10-team format for men's and women's basketball, volleyball and softball which would create travel partners and avoid some of the difficult scheduling the league office has.

The Sporting News' Mike DeCourcy also spoke with Aggie head men's basketball coach Marvin Menzies who said that he would welcome the addition of BYU to the WAC.

So what exactly would it mean for the WAC in terms of competition? Well, it means the WAC gets instantly better across the board in pretty much all sports. Last season, the 2009-2010 athletic season, BYU was the conference champion in eight of the 19 Mountain West sponsored sports (women's soccer-regular season, women's swimming and diving-regular season and tournament, men's and women's indoor track and field, men's tennis-regular season, softball-regular season as the MWC doesn't hold a postseason tournament, and men's and women's outdoor track and field).

Since the Mountain West's inception, BYU has won 20 regular season championships in men's sports which is nearly twice as many as the closest competitor (Utah with 11 and they're out the door in 2011) and 20 regular season championships in women's sports (Utah is tied with 20).

The BIG eye opener is in the tournament championships column. BYU has 41 men's tournament championship, the next closest school is UNLV with 15. On the women's side, BYU has 49 tournament championships, the next closest school is New Mexico with 14. That's complete and utter domination of tournament championships.

The biggest winners in a BYU addition would clearly be men's basketball as the WAC would go from a one/two bid league to potentially a two, three or four bid league. The other big winner would be volleyball. The WAC is improving but it's been a two-team league (Hawai'i and New Mexico State) since 2005. Hawai'i and BYU had a fierce rivalry in volleyball and while the Aggies and Wahine have had some intense matches since 2005, it seems like Wahine volleyball fans always seem to be lamenting the loss of their biggest rival, BYU.

So there you have it. Should the BYU football independence/WAC for every other sport thing actually happen (which, our gut says yes, or maybe that's just hunger pangs) that's how it would impact the on-the-field competition.



I hope BYU does this. That would take the WAC to a whole new level. BYU has a HUGE fanbase across the country. They will show up wherever they play. I live in Vegas and every time the Cougars come to play UNLV, it gets crazy. They are like Utah State times 20. Even though i'm not part of the LDS church, I am a huge BYU fan. They bring a whole new level of competition in every sport. First class all the way. Now it will be tough with UNR and Fresno State leaving the MWC. I think the WAC should bring in UNLV and UNM to fill in the void. Talk about a strong basketball conference with Utah State, NM State, BYU, UNLV, and UNM. It would be a great, great thing if BYU joins the WAC. Please do this!