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Southern Miss joins Sun Belt with two more Conference USA teams, FCS program expected to follow


Coach Andy Mac
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The latest domino in the realignment bonanza has fallen, and it has put the future of Conference USA in doubt. Southern Miss announced Tuesday that it has accepted an invitation to join the Sun Belt Conference, with the school making the move no later than July 1, 2023. 

"Today is a great day for Southern Miss. I want to thank Commissioner [Keith] Gill and the Board of Directors within the Sun Belt for their faith in our institution and our ability to add value to the conference," said Southern Mississippi athletic director Jeremy McClain. "We are excited about adding our rich tradition of success and passionate fan base to a conference that values those attributes, and look forward to working together to continue to elevate the Sun Belt on the national stage." 

Southern Miss has been a member of Conference USA since the creation of the league in 1995. It has five C-USA football championships under its belt, with the last one coming in 2011.

 read more:  https://www.cbssports.com/college-football/news/southern-miss-joins-sun-belt-with-two-more-conference-usa-teams-fcs-program-expected-to-follow/amp/

Edited by Coach Andy Mac
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I would think that having La Tech, Louisiana and ULM in the same conference would be great for fans and alumni of those schools.  I don’t know why this played out so badly for La Tech but they should have be angling to have another Louisiana school in their conference that isn’t Tulane.  This isn’t all on Judy.  But if she didn’t tell them this “no man’s land scenario was a legit possibility after looking at the landscape when Texas and OU kicked all this off re-alignment then 80% - 90% is.

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9 hours ago, Mike Jackson said:

I would think that having La Tech, Louisiana and ULM in the same conference would be great for fans and alumni of those schools.  I don’t know why this played out so badly for La Tech but they should have be angling to have another Louisiana school in their conference that isn’t Tulane.  This isn’t all on Judy.  But if she didn’t tell them this “no man’s land scenario was a legit possibility after looking at the landscape when Texas and OU kicked all this off re-alignment then 80% - 90% is.

Don't give Judy a pass.....this is all happening on her watch and you could see this coming.

LaTech screwed themselves several years ago with SBC...

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2 hours ago, Travis said:

Why FCS team? Is the sun belt so jaded to not bring in a team like WKU? Or MTSU?

W.K. and MTSU are a little out of the SBC footprint as well as the MAC's. My question is, do they add value to either conference? Apparently not. Also, the SBC East will consist of James Madison, ODU, Marshall, Coastal Carolina, App St.,  Georgia St. and Georgia Southern,which is a nice regional division. The West will have Texas St., ULL, ULM, So. Miss, Ark. State, Troy, and USA. Again, a nice regional division. CUSA is hosed, with one team in Miami, one in El Paso, and not much in between. They may be able to stay on life support by adding New Mexico State for all sports, and both U. Mass and U. Conn for football only but what a mess. They would have no value to ESPN, and to dissolve the conference would be a mercy killing.

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34 minutes ago, wardly said:

W.K. and MTSU are a little out of the SBC footprint as well as the MAC's. My question is, do they add value to either conference? Apparently not. Also, the SBC East will consist of James Madison, ODU, Marshall, Coastal Carolina, App St.,  Georgia St. and Georgia Southern,which is a nice regional division. The West will have Texas St., ULL, ULM, So. Miss, Ark. State, Troy, and USA. Again, a nice regional division. CUSA is hosed, with one team in Miami, one in El Paso, and not much in between. They may be able to stay on life support by adding New Mexico State for all sports, and both U. Mass and U. Conn for football only but what a mess. They would have no value to ESPN, and to dissolve the conference would be a mercy killing.

If Marshall fits in SBC geographically, then both WKU & MTSU should fit.  I would also say both schools would fit in the MAC (both schools are closer to several of the MAC schools than UNT is to UTSA).  
With WKU, you're getting a nice b-ball school, and a school that is capable of playing themselves into the football rankings (they did it under Coach Brohm back in 2015).   MTSU is a state school that would help in the Nashville market.   At one point, they were attractive enough for C-USA to add them with us ahead of other SBC schools...  what happened?  They didn't keep up budgetarily.

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I don't disagree, but apparently the SBC, MAC, and ESPN don't believe WK and MTSU brings added value to their conferences. The MAC is a mirror image of the MWC in that they apparently see no need to expand, and the SBC feels 14 programs is enough. Conferences are just not going to expand just for the sake of expansion. La. Tech, on the other hand, is getting pay back from ULL and especially ULM for decades of refusing to acknowledge their existence. It's a shame but its also self inflicted.

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