San Diego State Leaving Mountain West, Is BSU Next?
Just when we thought it was okay to take our well-deserved summer vacation, the drama and intrigue returned to college football. This time the drama is not about a team east of the great river but one of Boise State's greatest rivals.
Multiple reports say that San Diego State delivered a letter to the Mountain West stating their intentions to leave the conference. The Aztecs did ask for a month's extension before making the move permanent.
Pete Thamel of ESPN explains the reason for this move right now.
"San Diego State would need to give a year of notice to withdraw next June. If it waits past June 30, the exit fee it'd owe would jump from nearly $16.5 million to nearly $34 million.
San Diego State has long been linked to the Pac-12, which is amid a protracted process of landing a television contract. There's been no formal invitation for SDSU to join the league, and the timeline for that has been linked to either the Pac-12's television deal or the departure of a Pac-12 member. "San Diego State does not have an offer from the Pac-12," according to a source."
San Diego State could leave for the Big 12 or the Pac 12. The school has been described as a desirable candidate to join the Pac due to its academics, improved facilities, and the success of its football and basketball programs. The Aztec men's Basketball team was the runner-up in the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament.
The Aztecs also proved the Big 12 or the Pac 12 the lucrative Southern California television market. The Pac-12 would like to have a school in one of the largest television markets in the country after losing both USC and UCLA.
The big question will be, where are the Aztecs going? They offer the Big 12 the opportunity to join the Big 10 as the only conferences that have teams on both coasts. Wherever the Aztecs land, they will make more than they did in the Mountain West. The key to their decision is which conference offers them the most bang for their buck.
Geographically San Diego State is a fit for the struggling Pac 12, however, if the Pac doesn't want to give the Aztecs a total share of the media rights, they'll head to the Big 12.
The fascinating local angle to this story is what this move means to Boise State. The Broncos are a bigger national brand than any Group of Five and several Power Five schools. A loss of San Diego State weakens an already paltry Mountain West Conference. How will Boise State attract enough attention to make a post-season run without a big time rival?
The BIG 12 said they are continuing to expand. Perhaps their next call is to Boise State? We'll continue to update you on this story as it develops.