POSTED: Thursday, December 8, 2011 - 5:01pm
UPDATED: Thursday, December 8, 2011 - 6:36pm
The WAC has been teetering on the brink of collapse in terms of a football conference after the defections of Nevada, Hawai'i and Fresno State to the Mountain West. In an act of stabilizing the league, Commissioner Karl Benson announced on Wednesday that Boise State University will return to the Western Athletic Conference as a full member in all sports except football effective July 1, 2013.
The move became necessary when Boise State announced earlier Wednesday that it was withdrawing from the Mountain West Conference to join the Big East Conference in football-only for the 2013 season. Prior to joining the Mountain West five months ago, the Broncos had been a WAC member the previous 10 years.
With the addition, the WAC will consist of 11 members for the 2013-14 season; Boise State (non-football), Denver (non-football), Idaho, Louisiana Tech, New Mexico State, San Jose State, Seattle (non-football), Texas State, UT Arlington (non-football), UTSA and Utah State.
With the addition of Boise State in all sports other than football, Benson made a trip to Reno, Hawaii and Fresno to talk to school officials about staying in the WAC, after defections of Boise and TCU from the Mountain West. Benson said the schools are considering staying in the conference.
San Diego State could be moving as well. The Western Athletic Conference also could be an option for SDSU’s other sports, if not the Big West.
Statement from Idaho AD Rob Spear
"It is certainly good for the WAC and ensures Idaho and BSU will be competing annually in all sports other than football. That is a positive for the State of Idaho."
"The move to the Big East Conference makes a powerful statement about our vision for the future of the football program, and more than ever will showcase the Broncos in the national spotlight. We also look forward to rekindling some outstanding rivalries in the WAC, and continuing the development of our basketball programs and other sports," Boise State President Bob Kustra said.