Mountain West Conference: Will TV Sets In Houston Be a Factor In 2012 Expansion?

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Mountain West Conference: Will TV Sets In Houston Be a Factor In 2012 Expansion?

It began in June.

The WAC's football dynasty, the Boise State Broncos, agreed to leave the WAC effective July 1, 2011.

BYU's powerful state rival, the Utah Utes, set sail for future PAC-12 dreams.

Perhaps BYU was jealous of its instate rival. "The Project" was the name given to BYU's plan to declare football independence and rejoin the WAC in non-football sports.

In a series of e-mails, BYU and WAC school presidents and ADs discussed the future. BYU scheduled numerous foes from the WAC and waited upon approval from the Mormon Church. 

Perhaps an avalanche fell on the WAC and BYU on August 19th, 2010. After a day of fast-paced expansion action, the Fresno State Bulldogs and the Nevada Wolf Pack became the second and third teams to leave the WAC over the summer.

Fresno State and Nevada will join the Mountain West in 2012, and the two schools could have owed WAC Commissioner Karl Benson millions of dollars for a buyout deal.

Who is left in the WAC? Idaho, San Jose State, Hawaii, New Mexico State, Utah State and Louisiana Tech. The conference will need to add two schools. If WAC commissioner Karl Benson cannot add enough schools, the league will have to fold.

In contrast, the Mountain West can expand the amount of universities in the league.

In 2012, the MWC will have 10 schools. The conference can potentially raid the Conference USA or the WAC.

It's time to start thinking.

In this slideshow, I give you five candidates to fatten the conference. If the league expands to 12 members, commissioner Craig Thompson knows a football conference championship game is big money.

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