USM leaving CUSA Early

blueboro007

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IMO, the failure to upgrade facilities sits squarely on McPhee.

Massaro knew facilities needed to be upgrade, but his hands were tied until McPhee realized Massaro was right.

McPhee is an “academic“ at heart. He knows what to do to advance MT academically / internally, but isn’t great with the “external“ functions (Fundraising, athletics, enrollment).
I could never see Dr. Walker letting the facilities get in their current shape.
 

AustinLewis

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Which shows to me how bad of a leader he is. A good leader knows their shortcomings and surrounds themselves with people that are good at what he isn't. Leans on them and listens to them.

If even CM was pushing for it and McPhee still didn't see the reasoning, that makes McPhee look even worse in my book.
For the most part, Massaro has done a solid job hiring on the administrative side. He's hired guys to cover his weaknessess. It's a great strategy insomuch as you hire the right guy. And he has. Guys like Brad Smith, Graham Neff, Whit Turnbow, and Marco Born were excellent hires). Several of his administrative hires have gone on to bigger and better things (which is what you want to see at MT).

Others, however, have overall duds. And I won't give Massaro a pass on his coaching hires. He's made some blunders there (even when he got the right guy).

But the facility problems at MTSU are something an outsider could see coming a mile away. And I think that's where McPhee's failures come to play.
 

AustinLewis

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Yep. Stock's a symptom of the lack of ambition disease that is pervasive in the entire AD. I wouldn't hold any of the underlings blameless though.

Massaro doesn't act like a man stifled by his boss. He's been here almost 2 decades. The simple fact that he's still here doesn't speak of an ambitious man who wants greatness and is thwarted by his boss. More than likely, he's just a "yes" man enjoying the easiest gig in major college sports.

If Stock wanted facilities, he certainly could have had the most impact. At the end of the day, he's as responsible as any of them in presenting an entertainment product that separates people from their money. What would this fan base and the ensuing budget look like had we won 3 or 4 conference titles over the past 16 years, had some ranked teams, big wins and some big time NFL guys, and generally been a product that people get excited over and want to be a part of?

That said, I do think the door is cracked open a bit for further realignment and getting off the death row that the new CUSA is. Hoping against hope, but we need to start making some big moves here soon. Not just fancy drawings and "competing" our way to 6-6 again.
When your facilities are in MT's condition (in need of updating, replacing, etc), it's definitely reveals a problem that permeates the entire university.

Massaro, reportedly, was interested in the GaState AD job. One has to wonder his interest in GaState was the result of having McPhee hamstringing the AD. There's only so much you can do to fix a problem until your "boss" realizes it's actually a problem.

Most of the facility upgrades that have occurred during Massaro's tenure were "inexpensive", part of regular maintenance, the result of a coach raising funds themselves (WBB), donors / power brokers (baseball, football Hendrix Club), or the result of partnerships with external organization (tennis, golf).

To the best of my knowledge, current BuildBlueNow campaign is the first extensive capital campaign in quite some time (maybe the Floyd expansion in 1998?). That's why MT's athletic facilities are behind. It's why the football offices are hidden away underneath the Murphy Center. I

Stock, like so many other MT coaches, should have been out front clamoring and begging boosters for $$$ to upgrade facilities. Maybe he was silently, but I've never seen it (or heard boosters share this with me).

A few years ago, I spent some time looking at peer institutions and their facility upgrades (not counting upgrades needed to move from FCS to FBS). At the time, almost every optional upgrade / enhancement occurred after a period of sustained success and championship level play (ULL, Ark State being prime examples) or a renewed commitment & investment in the programs with the expectations of championships (UAB).
 
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SpaceRaider

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CUSA just released the fall football schedule WITH So Miss, Marshall, and ODU!


2022 Middle Tennessee Football Schedule
Sept. 3 at James Madison
Sept. 10 at Colorado State
Sept. 17 TENNESSEE STATE
Sept. 24 at Miami
Oct. 1 UTSA
Oct. 8 at Old Dominion
Oct. 15 WESTERN KENTUCKY
Oct. 22 Bye
Oct. 29 at FIU
Nov. 5 at Southern Miss
Nov. 12 CHARLOTTE
Nov. 19 at Marshall
Nov. 26 FLORIDA ATLANTIC
Dec. 2 C-USA Championship Game
 

Noogaraider1

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Way too early prediction:


Sept. 3 at James Madison-W
Sept. 10 at Colorado State-W
Sept. 17 TENNESSEE STATE-W
Sept. 24 at Miami-L
Oct. 1 UTSA-L
Oct. 8 at Old Dominion-W
Oct. 15 WESTERN KENTUCKY-L
Oct. 22 Bye
Oct. 29 at FIU-W
Nov. 5 at Southern Miss-W
Nov. 12 CHARLOTTE-W
Nov. 19 at Marshall-L
Nov. 26 FLORIDA ATLANTIC-W
Dec. 2 C-USA Championship Game

8-4. Maybe get the Marshall game and go to 9-3.

Really I just want to beat all the detractors.
 
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MidTennMtneer

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5 home games, which we knew. Surprised USM amd UTSA are on there again. Wasn't expecting that since we played them last year.
 
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Yeah, the beer program is much more prestigious than a law school and catering to the Chinese is far more important than football facilities.


I refuse to buy anything made in China. I haven't been to Harbor Freight in forever. But I gotta hand it to 'em. I like how China has been outspoken about the need for their males to actually be masculine. I also like how they are discouraging the kids from spending so much time playing damn video games. It's not good how they're using gov't force to limit access to video games (that's the parents' job), but I like the stance they've taken on those two issues.
 
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sWiley

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The message boards and twitter have to be on fire after this announcement. Would love to see and hear what fans from the departing schools are saying.

I hope we are able to force them to stay in CUSA and they all end up as cellar dwellers this football season....send them out with a swift kick in the ass
 

MTTim

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ESPN is reporting CUSA is taking all legal actions against the departing schools. My guess is Judy has her knee pads on.
 

MTOleBlue

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Not sure the football team will face this schedule. CUSA obviously is a flaming pile of garbage, so who knows what will happen. Are you guys who care about football interested in this? I thought we wanted better opponents than Marshall, ODU, and Southern Miss... like New Mexico State and Jacksonville State?
 

mtfblue

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Not sure the football team will face this schedule. CUSA obviously is a flaming pile of garbage, so who knows what will happen. Are you guys who care about football interested in this? I thought we wanted better opponents than Marshall, ODU, and Southern Miss... like New Mexico State and Jacksonville State?
yeah...Jacksonville is better than OFU in football, NMSU and USM are a wash. But the departed schools knew the schedule was coming and they did say they wanted to make sure schools schedules are left whole. This is going to be interesting, I guess each school could sue for damages from the schools trying to leave early causing scheduling conflicts
 

MTOleBlue

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yeah...Jacksonville is better than OFU in football, NMSU and USM are a wash. But the departed schools knew the schedule was coming and they did say they wanted to make sure schools schedules are left whole. This is going to be interesting, I guess each school could sue for damages from the schools trying to leave early causing scheduling conflicts
No matter how it can be spun, I don't think I'll ever see this as a positive. That's not even mentioning the 6 other teams that are leaving in future years. The entire thing is a disaster but that's expected. It's sad that CUSA and especially MT are the laughingstock of literally all of college sports now. The university asked for this by deciding to stay here. Fortunately I have other teams I support and I'll have a football season ticket with home games against Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, and Penn State amongst others. I used to make it a point to come to at least one MT home football game a year and road games if they were nearby but now... not happening because of the cumulative effect of the crap conference and acceptance of mediocrity. Oh well. At least there's basketball because of the parity and wider range of competition you see.
 

MidTennMtneer

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ESPN is reporting CUSA is taking all legal actions against the departing schools. My guess is Judy has her knee pads on.

What legal recourse? Due to her approval of the contracts, there is none. They pay the same now whether they leave now, in 23, or even 24.

Can't blame them in the least for walking out the door now.
 

dukewayne

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On the upside, Liberty, NMSU, and Jacksonville St all seem to be pretty good mid-major teams in basketball. From what I can tell Sam Houston isn't bad in basketball either. Sam Houston just doesn't look as good as the other 3 incoming basketball teams.

Watched NMSU home conference game online a couple of weeks ago on a Saturday night. NMSU had a legit 12,000 in their arena for a conference game vs Grand Canyon iirc.

Jacksonville St HC is the former WKU HC Harper. Last I checked they are competing at or near the top of their conference along with Liberty. Liberty regularly fills up their brand new 4-5k arena that looks similar to Belmont's or Lipscomb's arena. I believe it is attached to their still in use and renovated 10k seat arena that they will still play in when the need arises.

While the C-USA situation stinks badly, at least there are some pretty good performing basketball teams with good support coming into the conference. I guess the same could be said for football at least with Liberty, SHSU, and JSU.
 

sWiley

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NMSU is a top tier mid major in basketball. I could be wrong, but I believe they averaged higher attendance than any other CUSA school last year in b-ball and probably this year too.
 
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AustinLewis

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Yeah, the beer program is much more prestigious than a law school and catering to the Chinese is far more important than football facilities.
To be fair, McPhee tried to get a law program. State (wrongfully, imo) killed it.

In my experience working in higher ed, the academic folks don’t understand the importance of outreach programs. They get mad when the athletic department gets funding. The way some academic folks see it : giving money to athletics / outreach takes away money from academics. They don’t see it as an investment in the campus community. And that’s what I see in McPhee.
McPhee is so focused on academic partnerships and programs that he can’t understand outreach programs
 

ewglenn

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NMSU did have over 12k for GCU. They will likely continue to win and fill up the arena. All four inbound basketball teams are good. JSU and Liberty are at the top of the ASUN and NMSU and SHSU are 1/3 respectively in the WAC. Duke is correct, Liberty’s new arena seats right at 4k and they fill it regularly and have the Vines center for larger crowds as needed.
 

AustinLewis

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To be fair, McPhee tried to get a law program. State (wrongfully, imo) killed it.

In my experience working in higher ed, the academic folks don’t understand the importance of outreach programs. They get mad when the athletic department gets funding. The way some academic folks see it : giving money to athletics / outreach takes away money from academics. They don’t see it as an investment in the campus community. And that’s what I see in McPhee.
McPhee is so focused on academic partnerships and programs that he can’t understand outreach programs
To elaborate just a little bit :

I remember hearing professors I respect (and still consider friends) complain about their university spending $$$ on athletics. Meanwhile, the athletic community used academic spending in our recruiting pitch.

A rising tide lifts all boats. If academics improve, it helps athletics. If athletics improve, academics will too.

The academic community is often far too siloed to understand investing in one department can help all departments.
 
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MTTim

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To elaborate just a little bit :

I remember hearing professors I respect (and still consider friends) complain about their university spending $$$ on athletics. Meanwhile, the athletic community used academic spending in our recruiting pitch.

A rising tide lifts all boats. If academics improve, it helps athletics. If athletics improve, academics will too.

The academic community is often far too siloed to understand investing in one department can help all departments.
Agreed.
Educators are good at their profession however the majority are terrible at running a business. We need someone at the top with great business sense.
 

AustinLewis

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Agreed.
Educators are good at their profession however the majority are terrible at running a business. We need someone at the top with great business sense.
Or, at least, more of a focus toward outreach and understanding how internal academics and external outreach programs (like athletics) form a symbiotic relationship.

Worked at another school during a presidential transition. The 1st president I worked for was an academic & did a good job advancing the academic side of the institution. However, external engagement lagged & the school suffered.

The brought in an externally minded president & invested in outreach. Now, some 4-5 years later, enrollment & donations are up. They are investing in academics, campus life, etc.
 

MTOleBlue

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NMSU did have over 12k for GCU. They will likely continue to win and fill up the arena. All four inbound basketball teams are good. JSU and Liberty are at the top of the ASUN and NMSU and SHSU are 1/3 respectively in the WAC. Duke is correct, Liberty’s new arena seats right at 4k and they fill it regularly and have the Vines center for larger crowds as needed.
That's what drives me crazy. So much of this realignment is driven by football nowadays - including at MT, or so it seems - yet it all looks like we should be paying attention to basketball instead. I get that football is the big money-maker.
 
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ewglenn

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That's what drives me crazy. So much of this realignment is driven by football nowadays - including at MT, or so it seems - yet it all looks like we should be paying attention to basketball instead. I get that football is the big money-maker.
I think it’s smart to make sure additions are really good in one of football and MBB. They need to make sure the other isn’t completely dead. If NMSU could get their football back to somewhat respectable standings then they will be a home run addition.
 

MidTennMtneer

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MT01

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Why McPhee and Massaro are hell bent on tying themselves to the brick shoes on water that is Judy Mcleod is beyond me. Why she hasn't been fired still blows my mind. C-USA is no longer a destination. Either the AAC or going back to the Sun Belt has to be our goal at this point. And doubling down on this asinine effort to keep them in the league over what's ultimately going to be peanuts will probably officially eliminate any chance of going back to the Sun Belt. It's certainly going to anger the three leaving. And there's some holderovers that probably still hold a grudge cause we left in the first place. We need ODU, Marshall, and USM as a future ally. Not an enemy which is exactly what we are doing right now.

And for what? It's not like there is a significant monetary value that can be attained here. And what does come is going to be chewed up by court and attorney fees. It's just mind-boggling how many bad decisions we make.
 
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MidTennMtneer

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There is a part of me that wonders (hopes) that CM and McPhee didn't see an early exit coming. That they thought it would take time for them to leave, and it would give MT time to take some extra $ and start facilities for what will be the absolutely inevitable next round of realignment.

At the same time, how did you not see this coming? The SBC has a better TV deal. They don't have to wait on schools leaving like the AAC does. Yes you could say a contract is there to keep them, but anyone could see that there are no penalties for leaving early and weigh the pros and cons of a legal fight. I mean this honestly comes as no surprise to any of us, yet somehow, MT didn't see this coming? Or did and hugged Judy and said it'll be ok?

I know there are backroom dealings and we will never know the exact details of a MAC move or if there was SBC discussion. But deep down, my head overrules my hope and I know CM and McPhee had to have considered this a possible outcome. No way they couldn't have.

And they still chose to stay.

Either they know something we nor anyone else does, or they just made the biggest mistake ever. Other schools won't want to deal with Judy if this gets messy. Wouldn't surprise me to see new ones pull out (Liberty for ex) and be even in worse shape. I just truly do not get it.

I spoke my peace way back when to CM. And while I give him credit for replying to me personally, I 100% disagreed then, and I 100000% disagree now.

This is going to get super super super messy and there won't be any pieces of CUSA left. We will be on our own. I'd be calling Todd Stewart now and making backroom deals ASAP with anyone who will listen. MAC, AAC, or SBC.
 

MT01

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There is a part of me that wonders (hopes) that CM and McPhee didn't see an early exit coming. That they thought it would take time for them to leave, and it would give MT time to take some extra $ and start facilities for what will be the absolutely inevitable next round of realignment.

At the same time, how did you not see this coming? The SBC has a better TV deal. They don't have to wait on schools leaving like the AAC does. Yes you could say a contract is there to keep them, but anyone could see that there are no penalties for leaving early and weigh the pros and cons of a legal fight. I mean this honestly comes as no surprise to any of us, yet somehow, MT didn't see this coming? Or did and hugged Judy and said it'll be ok?

I know there are backroom dealings and we will never know the exact details of a MAC move or if there was SBC discussion. But deep down, my head overrules my hope and I know CM and McPhee had to have considered this a possible outcome. No way they couldn't have.

And they still chose to stay.

Either they know something we nor anyone else does, or they just made the biggest mistake ever. Other schools won't want to deal with Judy if this gets messy. Wouldn't surprise me to see new ones pull out (Liberty for ex) and be even in worse shape. I just truly do not get it.

I spoke my peace way back when to CM. And while I give him credit for replying to me personally, I 100% disagreed then, and I 100000% disagree now.

This is going to get super super super messy and there won't be any pieces of CUSA left. We will be on our own. I'd be calling Todd Stewart now and making backroom deals ASAP with anyone who will listen. MAC, AAC, or SBC.

Although I lament bad decisions and I know everyone thought we should go to the MAC, I still believe staying (for now) is the right call. The MAC is simply the wrong place for us. And the requirements to enter would have eliminated us from having a chance to move to the right place later. Right now we still have that option in the future. But we have got to start making improvements in football and basketball. And facilities is a big part of that. Hopefully whatever CNM is doing isn’t fools good because my head tells me there will be a reversion to the mean sometime between now and a year from now.
 
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JohnDavidBlue

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I don't see the belt ever being an option again. If so, it would have happened.

Judy is not a leader and has single handedly brought down the conference to where it is. However, I think she has the law on her side regarding the contract on this one. She is willing to dig her heels deep and you know what. Good for her. Show some balls.

This will show a precedent for departures to come in college athletics.
 

MidTennMtneer

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Although I lament bad decisions and I know everyone thought we should go to the MAC, I still believe staying (for now) is the right call. The MAC is simply the wrong place for us. And the requirements to enter would have eliminated us from having a chance to move to the right place later. Right now we still have that option in the future. But we have got to start making improvements in football and basketball. And facilities is a big part of that. Hopefully whatever CNM is doing isn’t fools good because my head tells me there will be a reversion to the mean sometime between now and a year from now.

At this point, I'm not even saying MAC. Just somewhere that isn't a sinking ship. I could be wrong, but I don't see Judy digging her heels. I hope I'm wrong and the payout jumps a few million per school. Glad I'm not a lawyer who has to determine if if is a breach of contract when there is no penalty for said breach.

Like I said I have a feeling this I'd going to get very very messy.
 

Brew_Raider

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CUSA just released the fall football schedule WITH So Miss, Marshall, and ODU!
So that’s where the legality issue will come into play. If the league has some deal /contract signed for scheduling, then by leaving early, these schools would owe the game buyout funds.

If there is no written binding game contract yet, CUSA could say that the breech of contract is costing them now and would have to show how even though they know the schools leaving early was announced, how this would cost financial hardship.

It will be interesting to see what the schools do.
 

AustinLewis

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So that’s where the legality issue will come into play. If the league has some deal /contract signed for scheduling, then by leaving early, these schools would owe the game buyout funds.

If there is no written binding game contract yet, CUSA could say that the breech of contract is costing them now and would have to show how even though they know the schools leaving early was announced, how this would cost financial hardship.

It will be interesting to see what the schools do.
To add it the legal complications,

1) Does it go to a federal or state court? If it's state, then you're looking at 3 different cases in the HOME state.
2) The possibility the schools could be granted sovereign immunity.

There will be lawyers.

But it's telling the SBC is saying "we didn't expect you to join until 2023." Is that to avoid a 3rd lawsuit between CUSA and SBC? Who knows?