Did the Pac 10 fear BYU in the 90s?

In light of recent expansion talk, I’ve come across several articles highlighting the Pac 10’s near misses of the past. One of the most interesting was the consideration of BYU in the 90s, which obviously never grew to be anything but talk. By now you’ve heard the flurry of suggestions declaring the Cougars the best fit for the conference.  And with them, you’ve also viewed the so-called roadblock, which echoes with the words—“if only they played on Sundays”.

Despite staying true to their religious rest period, some sources say BYU was a near addition to the league in the mid 1990s, with a schedule tweak here and there making for easy transition. But fear never allowed it to transcend to anything beyond discussion, because a couple of Pac 10 schools were afraid they wouldn’t be welcoming new members, as much as they felt they were being replaced.

Brad Rock of the Desert News has no actual confirmation of the rumor, but he says the two fearing schools were Washington State and Oregon State, who voted against BYU’s admission. But if you’re the Beavers or Wazzu, why wouldn’t you be scared? Not only is BYU a perfect academic fit, but they may also be athletically better than those worrisome programs. The cougars, for a mid-major, are far from being an athletic slouch, now or then. This is more exemplified by recent accomplishments.

BYU finished its football season by stomping the Beavers in the Las Vegas Bowl, earning them a ranking of 12th in the final AP vote. It fields a basketball team currently ranked 13th in the nation.

Also, the conference’s intention is to add to the viewing audience, which in turn adds to marketing potential. BYU’s home football attendance average for 2009 was 64,236 for six games. That number only trails USC and UCLA of the Pac 10, and is the best average in the Mountain West. Oregon State and Washington State averaged 42,328 and 25,909 spectators, respectively.

Utah and its recent on-field success is the Mountain West program that Pac supporters feel is best for courting. But the better fit, if one had to be chosen for the grand scheme of things, is BYU, despite the faith obstacle it poses that can be avoided with a little tinkering.


~ by Anthony on February 26, 2010.

2 Responses to “Did the Pac 10 fear BYU in the 90s?”

  1. […] original post here: Did the Pac 10 fear BYU in the 90s? « The Trojan Empire addthis_url = […]

  2. It’s not the fact BYU won’t play on Sunday, its the reason behind it. I doubt schools like Stanford, Cal and UCLA will vote yes to a school which allows religion to effect its academic and conference decisions. Not saying its right or wrong, just the way I see it.

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