Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE
A day after receiving word that both Tulane and East Carolina would be leaving Conference USA for the Big East, C-USA has responded by adding two schools from the Sun Belt. Today, it was reported that both Middle Tennessee and Florida Atlantic would be joining the league, beginning in 2014.
The additions mean that Conference USA will now have 14 members beginning the 2014-15 season, 12 of which will be full members. Charlotte and Old Dominion are not expected to start competing at the FBS level in football until the following year.
The move comes, perhaps as a preemptive one, as more C-USA schools could soon be on the move. The Big East lost Louisville to the ACC today, and rumors have swirled that more are looking for a way out.
For now, the conference will have the following members in the 2014 year: Rice, Tulsa, UTEP, Marshall, Southern Miss, UAB, Charlotte, Florida Atlantic, Florida International, Louisiana Tech, Middle Tennessee, North Texas, Old Dominion, and UTSA.
The worst part about this move is that it leaves the league with two fairly unbalanced divisions. Its still unclear how they will divide the league, but now, even more than ever, we are extremely isolated. Maybe Conference USA expects UTEP to bolt for the MWC?