UT-Tyler is a very ambitious smaller sibling in the UT system. They get terrific support from the Tyler community. I think it is 99% certain that they will join the LSC. The big drawback, of course, is that is a non-football playing school. The Heartland Conference that are being absorbed into the LSC in 2019 are all non-football playing schools. I agree with EastTexasWildcat that UT-T will certainly look to add football in the near future and the LSC football-playing schools will be supporting that addition. There is real fear over on the LSC board that a preponderance of non-football playing schools will begin to turn the conference as a whole away from football.
I could be wrong, but I don't see that really happening.
Post by wildcatcoachesshow on Feb 12, 2018 3:12:59 GMT
There's a rumor out there that the Tarleton football staff was telling recruits that they were joining the Southland before long. Isaac Niedrauer, who works for the SFA Sawmill, had his brother sign with Tarleton and he said that's what they were telling him when he was being recruited. If true then that's pretty messed up since I can't see them joining anytime soon.
Post by Cap'n Cattitude on Feb 12, 2018 17:21:23 GMT
It actually makes some sense as it would bring the FB playing members to 12 and BB to 14. That would allow for divisions and or balanced schedules. I do wonder if TSU can double their athletic budget. They will have to hit their students pretty hard. And do we really need more purple in the conference?
I know someone on the D-I Task Force at Tarleton and the faculty at Tarleton is violently against any thought of going D-I. Tarleton is only fully funded at the D-2 level in scholarships in a few sports. Of course, you don't have to be fully funded in scholarships at the D-2 level to move to D-1, ACU proved that 4.5 years ago. The most challenging part of going D-1 is that you can't move to D-1 as an independent - you must have a commitment from a conference that is willing to accept you to move to D-1. The only logical conference is the Southland and it appears to me that the SLC has remained cool to Tarleton in the past.
The next big hurdle for Tarleton is getting the $1.2 million it takes to get the invitation -- $1.1 million to the NCAA and $100k to the SLC. ACU was able to get all of that money in donor gifts. UIW was able to get that money from their sugar daddy, Tom Benson. Who does Tarleton have that can produce that kind of money?